MADRAS, Ore. -

Over the next three days, Ochoco National Forest fuels specialists will use prescribed fire to burn approximately 200 acres on the east side of the Crooked River National Grassland within a project area known as “Pine Ridge Stewardship.”

The Pine Ridge Stewardship project is located approximately 6 miles southeast of Madras adjacent to Forest Road 5310 near Juniper and Bennett Springs. 

Fuels specialists plan to reduce hazardous fuels along with improve wildlife forage and range lands by burning concentrations of previously cut juniper associated with a firewood removal project. 

No road closures are anticipated with this project. However, smoke will likely be visible from Highway 26 near Madras.  If smoke drifts on to roads, motorists should slow down, turn on headlights, and proceed with care.  Once ignited, projects are monitored by firefighters until they are declared out.

Fuels specialists will follow policies outlined in the Oregon Department of Forestry smoke management plan, which governs prescribed fires, and attempts to minimize impacts to visibility and public health. For more information, visit the Ochoco/Deschutes website at www.fs.usda.gov/centraloregon