With hot and dry conditions expected to continue and a series of human-caused fires on public land, the Prineville District Bureau of Land Management, the Deschutes National Forest and the Crooked River National Grassland of the Ochoco National Forest are implementing campfire restrictions.
Effective 12:01 a.m. August 2, (Friday), open fires, including charcoal fires, will be prohibited, except in the following designated campgrounds:
Crescent Ranger District: Contorta Flat, Contorta Point, Crescent Lake, Odell Creek, Princess Creek, Simax Beach, Simax Group, Spring, Sunset Cove, Trapper Creek, Whitefish Horse Camp, Windy Group Site, Industrial Mushroom Camp (Little Odell Butte)
Bend-Ft. Rock Ranger District: Crane Prairie, Cultus Lake, Elk Lake, Fall River, Fall River Guard Station, Gull Point, Lava Lake, Little Cultus Lake, Little Fawn, Little Fawn Group, Little Lava Lake, Mallard Marsh, North Twin, Point, Quinn Meadow Horse Camp, Quinn River, Rock Creek, Sheep Bridge, South, South Twin, West South, Big River Group, Bull Bend, Wyeth, Cinder Hill, East Lake, Little Crater, Newberry, Ogden Group, Paulina Lake, Prairie
Sisters Ranger District: Allen Springs, Allingham, Blue Bay, Camp Sherman, Candle Creek, Cold Spring, Driftwood, Gorge, Graham Corral, Indian Ford, Jack Creek, Link Creek, Lower Bridge, Lower Canyon Creek, Perry South, Pine Rest, Pioneer Ford, Riverside, Scout Lake, Sheep Spring, Smiling River, South Shore, Suttle Lake, Three Creeks Lake, Three Creeks Meadow, Three Creeks Horse Camp, Whispering Pine
Crooked River National Grassland: Skull Hollow and Haystack Reservoir
Prineville BLM: Castle Rock, Still Water, Lone Pine, Palisades, Chimney Rock, Cobble Rock, Post Pile, and Poison Butte.
These restrictions do not apply to Wilderness areas on the Deschutes National Forest.
In addition to campfire restrictions, smoking is restricted to an enclosed vehicle or building, in a designated campground, in boats on lakes and rivers, or while stopped in an area at least three feet in diameter that is clear of all flammable material.
Portable cooking stoves or lanterns using liquefied or bottled fuel may be used in all areas. The restrictions also include operating or using any internal or external combustion engine without a spark arresting device and welding or using any torch with open flame.
On the Deschutes National Forest and Crooked River National Grassland, drivers are also prohibited from using a motor vehicle off National Forest System roads.
Officials want to remind the public that using explosive target material, such as Tannerite, explosives, and fireworks continue to be prohibited.
In addition to Public Use Restrictions, the Prineville BLM, Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests and Crooked River National Grassland will be moving to an Industrial Fire Precaution Level III (IFPL) at the same time. The IFPL applies to permitted and industrial operations on federal lands. IFPL III is considered a “partial shutdown” and restricts the use of chainsaws to loading sites on tractor/skidder operations to between the hours of 8 p.m. to 1 p.m. Only cable yarding systems that use non-motorized systems are allowed. Industrial welding and mechanized loading operations are also restricted to the hours of 8 p.m. to 1 p.m. Industrial and permitted operations may request a waiver from the Forest Service or BLM depending on land ownership at the activity location. It is the responsibility of all operators to know and follow the requirements of the current fire precaution level.
More information about both IFPL and Public Use Restrictions can be found at the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forest website, the Prineville District BLM website, and the website for the Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center.
Public use restrictions are not put in place to ruin camping experiences. Officials carefully consider the current fire situation, fuel moisture and predicted weather before making the decision to implement fire restrictions. Every year lightning-caused fires place a heavy demand on our firefighting resources, and put our wildlands, our firefighters, and our communities at risk. Fires caused through carelessness or negligence only increase the threat to life and livelihood, and place an even greater burden on already busy firefighters. Every fire that’s prevented protects our communities and helps our firefighters remain available, rested, and safe.