The goal of pile burning is to reduce hazardous fuels leftover from recent thinning projects, designed to reduce the potential for wildfire to move from public to private lands. While many of these areas had biomass removed as part of the project, not all material was able to be used. The remaining material has been piled in preparation for burning. Burning the piles will also protect the large, old-growth juniper in the area from large-scale summer wildfires.
As long as crews have favorable weather, this project should take less than a week to complete. Although not expected to linger, smoke may be visible to residents in Eagle Crest, Redmond and to visitors traveling through areas. No road closures are anticipated with any of these burns; however, smoke may settle in overnight. Where necessary, motorists should reduce speeds and turn on headlights.
All controlled burns are completed in cooperation with the Oregon Department of Forestry smoke management plan. These burns meet the recommendations put forth in the Redmond Community Wildfire Protection Plan, which describes opportunities to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire in Redmond and Eagle Crest areas. For more information about prescribed burning, please contact the Prineville BLM at (541) 416-6700.