Current situation

April and May see lots of controlled burns in Oregon to eliminate piles of woody debris left over after logging or thinning. Embers buried in the ashes of these pile burns can sometimes reignite even days after a fire appears to be out, especially if winds blow away ashy debris. The same winds can then fan smoldering embers back to life. That's why it's a good idea to keep checking old pile burns to ensure no hot spots have rekindled.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Central Oregon fire update - 11 new fire starts Aug. 7

FIRE NEWS--Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center
For Immediate Release: August 8, 2013 –10:00 am
Contact: Media Desk, 541/416-6811 Website:
Follow us on our Twitter account: CentralOrFire

Central Oregon Fire Update
Over the last 24 hours Initial Attack forces responded to 11 new fire starts and were successful containing them. Initial Response resources remain ready to respond to any new fire starts as they are reported. Air tankers which were focusing on the Green Ridge fire are now being shared with the Grouse Mountain Fire just North of John Day and new starts in the Vale area. A Fire Weather watch and Red Flag warning remain in place for the entire Central Oregon area for scattered thunderstorms beginning tonight through Sunday evening. Some of the storms may bring localized wetting rain.

In general the Central Oregon skies will remain smoky as the upper elevation westerly winds continue to blow smoke from the wildfires in SW Oregon, which are combining with the local fires to create the current conditions. Air quality in the Camp Sherman area was described as light filtered smoke with fairly clear air in the valley bottoms. The latest air quality information is available at

Update on the Green Ridge Fire which is burning 14 miles northwest of Sisters is now about 958 acres and remains at 30% containment, with 620 personnel assigned. Overnight crews successfully completed a burn out operation along the southern flanks of the fire. This operation was visible from Camp Sherman. Later in the evening winds picked up and the eastern flank of the fire spread to the east with some spotting occurring up to ¾ of a mile. Today firefighters will focus on containing these new spots and construction of new firelines in efforts to corral this fire. There currently are no evacuations in place. Additional information is also available at

For those wishing to visit the Camp Sherman area and enjoy the Metolius River, businesses are open and look forward to serving all your recreational needs. Six popular campgrounds remain open along the Metolius River, however three campgrounds are closed. They are Lower Bridge, Allen Springs, and Pioneer Ford Campgrounds.

A community meeting has been scheduled for this coming Friday, August 9 at 6:30 p.m. at the Camp Sherman Fire Hall. Members of the Incident Management Team and Deschutes National Forest Staff will present the latest information on the Green Ridge Fire. Everyone is welcome to attend.

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The purpose of this blog is to provide breaking news about wildfire activity on the forestlands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry. We invite you to post questions or comments you have about current wildfires. Please keep your posts civil and free of profanity. You are also welcome to contact us by email at:

Current wildfire info

Cool, wet weather in the winter of 2016-17 ended Oregon's long drought and left a thick mountain snowpack. It didn't take long for that to melt and vegetation to dry out due to a series of heatwaves and a prolonged stretch of dry weather over the summer. As forest fuels dried, fires started and spread, many from lands adjacent to those protected by ODF, such as the Chetco Bar Fire in Curry County. That one fire accounted for 46% of the 47,537 acres of land protected by ODF which burned in 2017. Of fires originating on ODF-protected land, 95% were put out at less than 10 acres.

What we do

Protection jurisdiction

The Oregon Dept. of Forestry protects 16 million acres of private and public forestlands from wildfire. This includes all private forestlands in Oregon as well as state and local government-owned forests, along with 2.8 million acres of federal Bureau of Land Management lands in the western part of the state. In total there are about 30.4 million acres of forest in Oregon.

Fire suppression policy

The department fights fire aggressively, seeking to put out most fires at 10 acres or smaller. This approach minimizes damage to the timber resource and fish and wildlife habitat, and protects lives and property. It also saves money. While suppressing large fires can cost millions of dollars, economic and environmental damage from wildfires can be many times greater.


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Oregon Dept. of Forestry's public information officers in Salem, Ore., maintain this blog. During the wildfire season, we spend much of our time reporting on fires and firefighting to news media and the public.