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Joseph Canyon Fire

Unit Information

Vale District
Bureau of Land Management
Vale, OR 97918

BLM Shield

Incident Contacts

BLM Vale District
Phone: 541-523-1407

USDA Forest Service
Phone: 541-519-8051

Oregon Dept. of Forestry
Phone: 541-263-0661

Highlighted Activity

06/07/2021 Fire Requires Closure of Precious Lands Wildlife Management Area in Northea
Lapwai, Idaho- On June 4th, the Joseph Canyon fire started and is still actively burning on part of the Precious Lands Wildlife Management Area in Northeastern Oregon. Due to the extremely steep...
Closure - 06/07/2021
Sunday view of the Joseph Canyon Fire from Rye Ridge. Photo by Andy Hayes, Wallowa-Whitman National ForestImage options: [ Full Size ]

The Joseph Canyon Fire was one of multiple ignitions resulting from an overnight lightning storm June 3-4. It was reported Friday morning, June 4, by Washington Department of Natural Resources as burning in steep, rugged terrain in northern Wallowa County.

Located 23 miles southwest of Lewiston, ID, the blaze began on Vale Bureau of Land Management lands, but soon crossed over into Washington state lands protected by Oregon Department of Forestry.

 Three large airtankers dropped retardant along the perimeter of the Joseph Canyon Fire Friday to slow the fire growth.  In addition to firefighter delivery, three Type 2 helicopters were used to drop water on hot spots.

The fire continued to burn actively overnight in the flashy fuels and was estimated to be approximately 2,500 acres by Friday afternoon. Cooler temperatures, reduced wind and moister air slowed the fire on Sunday and Monday, while crews made significant progress in containment. The fire is currently estimated at 7610 acres with 95% containment. Control of the fire was returned to the local unit on June 11 and will be patrolled and monitored using air resources.

Basic Information

Current as of
Incident TypeWildfire
Date of OriginFriday June 04th, 2021 approx. 10:15 PM
LocationJoseph Canyon
Incident CommanderBLM Vale District
Incident DescriptionWildfire
Coordinates45.989 latitude, -117.081 longitude

Current Situation

Total Personnel96
Size7,610 Acres
Percent of Perimeter Contained95%
Estimated Containment DateMonday June 14th, 2021 approx. 12:00 PM
Fuels Involved

Short Grass (1 foot)

Timber (Grass and Understory)

Significant Events

Minimal, smoldering


Planned Actions

Monitor and patrol with air resources

Projected Incident Activity

Minimal spread expected due to suppression actions taken, and weather forecast. Very little smoke present. Fuels will remain wet with cool and moist conditions.

Current Weather

Weather Concerns

Very moist southerly flow and low pressure resulted in a steady rainfall Wed night through early Thursday afternoon. Significant precipitation amounts over the fire area and ICP. 0.20" to 0.50"

with locally higher amounts are expected by noon Thursday. Temperatures will be cool with highs in the 50s Thursday.

Wet weather will create slippery muddy road concerns.