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.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Oregon Dept. of Forestry Wildfire Summary, week ending June 19, 2015

Though forest conditions are extremely dry across the state, wildfire activity on the 16 million acres of private and public lands protected by the Oregon Dept. of Forestry has been relatively moderate. Considerable credit goes to the Oregon public for exercising fire safety awareness in the forest. Nature has contributed, too, with lightning occurring during the week but not burning large acreage.

Sunset Grade Fire - The 67-acre fire, reported June 13, burned on the Tillamook State Forest. ODF, assisted by the Forest Grove and Banks Fire departments, contained the fire the next morning. Cause is under investigation.

Powder House Canyon Fire - The 33-acre fire was reported June 15 burning in the Central Oregon District - John Day Unit. ODF resources currently at the fire include: two fire engines, two hand crews, one water tender, and one bulldozer on standby. The fire is 90 percent contained and in mop-up. Cause is under investigation.

Buckskin Fire - This 2,635-acre fire reported June 11 is burning 10 miles SW of Cave Junction in southwestern Oregon on the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest, in an area previously burned in the 2002 Biscuit Fire. The fire is currently six percent contained. The cause is lightning. More information is available at:

Little Basin Fire - This 630-acre fire reported June 15 is burning 10 miles north of Imnaha in the Hells Canyon National Recreation Area. The fire is currently 85 percent contained. Cause is under investigation. More information is available at:

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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 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.


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.