Malheur National Forest
U.S. Forest Service
P.O. Box 909
John Day, OR 97845
UPDATE - OCTOBER 6, 2017: Due to changing forecasts, Emigrant Creek Ranger District will not ignite as planned. Officials will reassess the beginning of next week for potential ignitions mid-week.
October 5, 2017: As conditions appear to be in line for additional prescribed burning on the southern half of the forest, Emigrant Creek Ranger District plans to accomplish 800 acres in the Silvies project area burn units beginning Friday, October 6. Additionally, Blue Mountain Ranger District is evaluating conditions for further prescribed burning in the Damon project area burn units next week.
Due to unfavorable conditions, additional prescribed burning in the 16 Road project and Knox project area burn units is unlikely to occur until next spring.
Crews are evaluating conditions to move into pile burning in numerous project area burn units on the forest.
Frequent, low-intensity fire is essential for healthy forests and reducing the risk of uncharacteristic wildfire caused by excessive fuel buildup. Prescribed burning is an effective tool for removing excessive amounts of brush, shrubs, and trees, while also encouraging the growth of native vegetation. However, prescribed burning is highly dependent on weather conditions, which have to be within a narrow criteria window in order to use prescribed fire. Factors such as wind speed and direction, temperatures, relative humidity, and fuel moistures are all taken into consideration prior to implementing a prescribed burn operation.
Each prescribed burn represents many years of planning and preparation to ensure burn operations meet prescriptive conditions that allow for successful burns that provide multiple benefits to resources. The forest works closely with the Oregon Department of Forestry and Washington Department of Natural Resources in accordance with the State’s Smoke Management Plans to determine when, where, and how much is burned on a daily basis. Potential smoke impacts, looking at volume of smoke, direction of spread, and mixing heights, are determined prior to each burn. All burns will be monitored until a season ending rain or snow occurs.