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.

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

From the Wasco County Sheriff's Office Emergency Management: Press Release - Rowena Fire Update: August 6, 2014 @ 2 p.m.

Wasco County
Emergency Management

511 Washington St., Suite #102
The Dalles, Oregon 97058
Phone 541-506-2790
Fax 541-506-2791



Management of the Rowena Fire is now being conducted by a Unified Command between Oregon Department of Forestry and the Oregon State Fire Marshall’s Office. The Incident Command post has been set up at Mid-Columbia Fire and Rescue, 1400 West 8th Street, The Dalles, OR.

Highway 30 is now closed between The Dalles Country Club and Rowena; however, the closure could expand as the fire progresses. Citizens are asked to keep away from the area in order to avoid interfering with firefighting operations.

Currently, there are approximately 275 structures threatened by the fire’s spread. A Level III (Go) evacuation notice has been issued for seventy five residences located between the 5500 block of Highway 30 west to the 6200 block of Highway 30. Approximately 200 residences located between the 4800 block of Highway 30 (Exit 82) west to the 5500 block of Highway 30, including Murray’s Addition, Foley Lakes, Simonelli Road, Tooley Terrace and Adeline Way have been placed on a Level I (Get Ready) evacuation notice. Evacuation notices are being conducted by Wasco County Sheriff’s Office staff and via the Citizen Alert emergency notification program. Please register for Citizen Alert at

The American Red Cross has opened a shelter for residents displaced by the fire, located at the Mosier Grange, 900 4th Street, Mosier. For information related to the shelter, please contact the American Red Cross at 888-680-1455 or follow @redcrosscascade on Twitter. Home at Last, 541-296-5189, is offering sheltering services for dogs and cats if owners have no other options for their pets. Livestock sheltering is being coordinated by Nan Wimmers, 541-993-5510.

Please refer to the official Rowena Fire Facebook page at “Rowena Fire Oregon – 2014” and Twitter feed @rowenafire2014 for current fire information. Questions can be directed to

For current road closures and evacuation notices, call the Wasco County Sheriff’s Office Rowena Fire hotline at 541-506-2792.

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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.