Firefighters made progress in completing the burnout operations planned for last evening. The area blackened was located between the established dozer line of the east perimeter and along Forest Road (FR) 2039, the south perimeter. Five spot fires were located over the firelines during operations. The largest spot was 1/8 of an acre. The spots were quickly surrounded and extinguished. Firefighters will be diligently gridding the area searching for additional spots south of the FR 2039. Plans are to continue burning out fuels between the fire line and the main fire tonight along the south west corner to secure the entire fire perimeter. In other locations of the fire, firefighters are locating and mopping up hot spots. The infra-red flight over the fire last night displayed very few heat signatures along the northern end of the fire. Safety concerns to firefighters include snags, unburned fuels between the firefighters and the main fire, high temps, and driving.
A Community Meeting is planned for this evening, July 27th at 5:00 pm at the Heppner City Hall at 111 North Main Street. Fire managers will provide a fire update with maps and an opportunity for questions and answers at the end of the presentations. If you are unable to attend, this meeting will be live streamed through Periscope. Please download the app, create an account and “follow” NWIMT8. Once the broadcast begins you will receive a notification. For assistance please call (541) 676-2100.
The Morrow County Off-Highway Vehicle Park and Campground is currently open, however some trails may be impacted by the fire activity. Please observe all trail and area closures.
The firefighter morning operational briefing may be viewed at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eiRA9yXCf9E
Smoke from a large fire to the west has drifted into the local area. Those with sensitivity concerns should take appropriate precautions. For more information on air quality please visit: http://www.oregon.gov/DEQ/AQ/Pages/index.aspx
Acreage: 437; the footprint of the fire changed slightly with the burnout operations.
Fire Information: Christie Shaw, Oregon Department of Forestry, 541-263-0661 or Darcy Weseman, Umatilla National Forest 541-278-3722 Available 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.
Information Websites: Inciweb – https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/6028
ODF Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/ODFCentralOregon/.
Resources: Total personnel assigned – 367: 3-type 2 IA hand crews, 11-type 2 hand crews, 2- medium helicopters, 1- light helicopter, 12-engines, 6-dozers, 7-water tenders, 2–faller modules, and 3-skidgens. Additional resources have been ordered and continue to arrive.
Air Operations: A temporary flight restriction (TFR) is in place over the fire area restricting aerial public access. Please check the NOTAMs prior to flying. The public is reminded all air operations are grounded any time a drone is sighted within the TFR, delaying fire suppression efforts. Flying within the TFR is prohibited and against the law.
Weather: Today will be sunny with max temperatures of 92 degrees with relative humidity to 11%. Winds will be west-northwest at 3 - 6 mph decreasing to 3-7 mph in the late afternoon.
Closures: The Umatilla National Forest implemented a Forest Closure including a large area, trail and road closure within the vicinity of Bull Prairie Lake and the Wilson Prairie area. A map and detailed description of the area closure is available at any Umatilla National Forest office and on Inciweb. Forest Service personnel will be located near the campground to assist recreational visitors with alternative locations to camp.
Closure Description: Starting at State Highway 207 at its junction with the Forest Boundary in T7S, R25E, Section 3, South to Forest Service Road (FSR) 24, then follow FSR 24 east to its junction with FSR 23, then follow FSR 23 east to FSR 2128, then follow FSR 2128 north to the Forest Boundary at T7S, R26 Section 2, then following the Forest Boundary west to State Highway 207.
In addition, the following roads are closed:
National Forest System Road (NFSR) 2039000 - From the Junction of Highway 207 easterly to Morrow County Road Wilson Creek Road 732 - 5.0 miles.
National Forest System Road (NFSR) 2000350 - From the Junction of Highway 207, easterly to National Forest System Road (NFSR) 2039000 – 4.6 miles.
National Forest System Road (NFSR) 2307000 - From the Junction of National Forest System Road 2300000, northeasterly to Bull Prairie Campground National Forest System Road (NFSR) 2300000 – 8.5 miles
National Forest System Road (NFSR) 2307035 - From the Junction of National Forest System Road 2307000, north to Bull Prairie Campground National Forest System Road (NFSR) 2039030 – 0.8 miles.
The weather forecast for the region is a continued hot and dry trend with poor humidity recovery. Any spark landing in light fuels (grass) has a 100% potential to start a fire so please follow restrictions to limit potential human wildfire ignitions.
Regulated Closure is in effect for ODF’s Central Oregon District. Specific restrictions, intended to reduce human caused fires, can be found at www.ODFcentraloregon.com.
Phase B of the Public Use Restrictions (PURS) for the Umatilla National Forest are in effect. For more information regarding these and other restrictions on the Umatilla National Forest visitwww.bmidc.org