The Malheur National Forest has opened the 13 and 16 Roads to woodcutting on the perimeter of the Cow Fire.

Woodcutting is limited to the felled and stacked woodpiles on the roadsides. Felling trees is not permitted. Permits are required and may be purchased at any Malheur National Forest Ranger District offices.

“There are approximately 25 to 30 loads of firewood along NFS (Road) 13 on the northeast side of the road," said Prairie City District Ranger Ed Guzman. "Some of the wood will need to be cut down to meet the 8-foot length requirement.”

While woodcutting is normally not permitted on forest roads with two-digit identifiers, the Forest Service has temporarily waived this restriction on the 13 and 16 Roads. Material cleared along these roads to stop the fire has been piled next to the roads to facilitate public woodcutting. There is still firefighting traffic in the area so the public is reminded to drive slowly and carefully.

Decked wood in the Deardorff Rock Pit is set aside for a future timber sale. These logs are not part of the firewood available in the area.

On Wednesday, crews will continue with fireline cleanup and rehabilitation. This team will repair firelines to prevent erosion by building water bars to divert runoff away from the firelines. All chipping and log hauling operations have been completed. Cool, wet weather continued over the fire overnight making fire spread very unlikely in the near future. Isolated concentrations of heavy fuels will continue to smolder and produce smoke.

The Road Closure Order has been revised in the vicinity of the Cow Fire and surrounding roads. While the 16, 13 and 1665 roads are now open, there is still an Area Closure in effect that includes all roads west from the 13 Road and to the north and west from the 16 Road that will remain in place for an extended period. It is not safe to travel off-road in recently burned areas. Trees killed or weakened by the fire will continue to fall for months, even during calm weather.

Remaining resources include three hand crews, two engines and two excavators.

See the Malheur National Forest Facebook page for future updates.

For more information on firewood regulations please visit: https://www.fs.usda.gov/detailfull/malheur/passes-permits/?cid=fsbdev3_033809&width=full or call 541-575-3000.

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