Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District Firefighters Conduct Pile Burning Operations West of Bend and Sunriver

Firefighters will conduct ignitions in visible areas west of Bend, Sunriver and along Cascade Lakes Highway as favorable conditions exist

Bend, Oregon — Firefighters on the Bend-Fort Ranger District plan to start pile burning in areas west of Bend and Sunriver as conditions are favorable.

Ignitions could start as early as today in areas including near Swampy Lakes SnoPark, the Deschutes River and northwest of Skyliners Road. Firefighters will also continue pile ignitions adjacent to Road 45 west of Sunriver. Over the next few weeks, the public can expect to see smoke from pile burning ignitions in areas adjacent to Cascade Lakes Highway and locations west of Bend.

No road or trail closures are anticipated. Smoke from some of these piles may be visible from Bend and the surrounding area. Once ignited, piles are monitored by firefighters until declared out.

Piles may smolder, burn, and produce smoke for several days after ignition. While smoke may linger in the area, removing these large accumulations of woody debris during the winter months minimizes fire danger. The piles are concentrations of leftover materials associated with vegetation management activities being done to help maintain and restore forest and ecosystem health while reducing hazardous fuels loading.

What does this mean for you?

The possibility exists for smoke to settle in low-lying areas due to cool night-time temperatures.

  • When driving in smoky areas, drivers should slow down and turn on headlights
  • If you have heart or lung disease, asthma, or other chronic conditions, ask your doctor about how to protect yourself from smoke
  • Go to centraloregonfire.org to learn more about smoke safety and pile burning in Central Oregon

For more information on hazardous fuels reduction projects in Central Oregon, visit centraloregonfire.org/ or fs.usda.gov/deschutes and follow us on Twitter @CentralORFire. Text “COFIRE to 888-777 to receive wildfire and prescribed fire text alerts.


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