Current situation

Winter and spring 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 29, 2013

ODF fire update - Aug. 29, 2013


Government Flats Complex
The lightning-started Government Flats Complex, burning 10 miles southwest of The Dalles, Oregon, reamins at 11,434 acres (Blackburn Fire, 11,221 acres, Government Flats Fire, 229 acres, and Wells Road Fire, 66 acres), with the two smaller fires 100 percent contained and the total complex 85 percent contained. There are currently 552 personnel assigned to this incident this morning, although ODF Incident Management Team 3 is transitioning management of the complex to a local ODF Central Oregon District – The Dalles Unit fire management team, who is assuming command of this complex today.
New Information Contact: David Morman, ODF Central Oregon District Information Officer, 503-302-7088

Big Windy Complex
The lightning-started Big Windy Complex, burning eight miles northwest of Galice, is now 24,137 acres and 55 percent contained. There are currently 822 total personnel assigned to this fire which is now being managed by the Southern (U.S.) Area Red Incident Management Team.
Information: 541-476-1252

Douglas Complex
The Douglas Complex, burning approximately 7 miles north of Glendale in Douglas and Josephine counties, is now 90 percent contained and has burned approximately 48,679 acres. The complex was turned over to a local fire management team out of the Douglas Forest Protective Association on Monday, August 26, 2013.
New Information Contact: Kyle Reed, DFPA Fire Prevention Specialist, 541-672-6507 X 136


The lightning-started Vinegar Fire, burning 6.5 miles southwest of Granite in the Greenhorn Unit of the North Fork John Day Wilderness Area, is 1,220 acres and 45 percent contained. The fire is located approximately 6.5 miles southwest of Granite, Oregon. It is burning in the North Fork John Day Wilderness Area. There are 489 people assigned to work on the fire. Road and areas closures remain in effect.
Information: 541-755-9003.

The lightning-started Labrador Fire continues to burn in inaccessible country 30 miles southwest of Grants Pass, Oregon. Isolated heat pockets still persist in the fire. The fire is 2,023 acres, with no containment percentage reported; 25 personnel are assigned to this fire. An Evacuation Level 1 order is still in place for the Oak Flat community in Josephine County and the Illinois River road remains closed to public use for safety reasons. A season ending event will provide the moisture needed to control the fire. Unless the fire situation changes, there will be no further reports on this fire.
Information: 541-864-9282

The 3,314-acre lightning-caused Olympus Fire (BLM), burning 23 miles east of Crane in grass, brush, and juniper, is now 100 percent contained. Unless the situation changes, this will be the last report on this fire.

The lightning-caused Sagehen Gulch Fire (USFS) burning in grass, brush and timber 26 miles southeast of Prairie City is 290 acres and now 80 percent contained.


For information on other ongoing wildfires in other jurisdictions within Oregon, go to the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center website, and to the national Incident Information System website at

Statewide air quality index readings are available at

ODF maintains a blog at, that includes breaking news on wildfires statewide, along with current fire statistics.

The Southwest Oregon District maintains a blog at with wildfire information specific to the region, as well as a Twitter feed at

News media may call the Fire Information Duty Officer pager, 503-370-0403, 24/7 for fire information. The duty officer will call back promptly. Media may also call the Oregon Department of Forestry headquarters office, 503-945-7200, weekdays during business hours.

This update focuses primarily on firefighting activity on Oregon Department of Forestry-protected lands involving fires 10 acres or larger in size or of other significance. It also reports on ODF’s actions as a partner in fighting major fires that start on lands protected by other agencies.

ODF is responsible for fire protection on private and state-owned forestland, and on a limited amount of other forestlands, including those owned by the U.S. Bureau of Land Management in western Oregon. Fires may cross ownerships, and because of the need to share firefighting resources, agencies work closely together.


Safety Tips:
Fire weather:
Wildfire smoke forecasts:
Keep Oregon Green:

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Comments and questions

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 snowpack at higher elevations which will take some time to melt. However, in the summer of 2017 a series of heatwaves and a prolonged stretch of dry weather created conditions that dried forest fuels, allowing fires to start and spread. The result was more than a thousand fires on lands protected by the Oregon Department of Forestry.Ninety-five percent of these 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.


About Me

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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.