News and Opinion from Sisters, Oregon

Fire consumes two forest dwellings

A fire of undetermined origin consumed two trailers/RVs in the forest just west of Sisters late Saturday night, May 13.

"It involved two RVs," Sisters-Camp Sherman Fire District Shift Commander Cody Meredith told The Nugget. "One of them was completely destroyed. When we pulled up, there was pretty good flame-length; a tree was torching between the two RVS."

The fire, which was called in just before 11 p.m., occurred north of the Best Western Ponderosa Lodge off the 2068-120 forest spur road, less than a quarter-mile from Sisters. The fire was on the east side of Highway 20 and readily visible from the highway.

Meredith said that the occupants of the RVs appeared to have departed the scene; law enforcement informed firefighters that a truck associated with the campsite was not present. It was not clear whether the occupants left before or after the fire started. The shift commander told The Nugget that one of the RVs appeared to be the area of origin for the blaze - the fire then spreading to the second one 20 to 30 feet away."

Sisters Fire Chief Roger Johnson told The Nugget that the state fire marshal responded to investigate.

Due to the level of destruction, the deputy state marshal was unable to pinpoint a cause.

The fire's cause is officially ruled "undetermined." A number of forest dwellers camp regularly in that area, which has posed concerns over sanitation, fire safety, and personal security for neighbors in the area.

Sisters-Camp Sherman Fire District; Cloverdale Fire District; Black Butte Ranch Fire District; and the Deschutes County Sheriff's Office responded Saturday night. Chief Johnson said that the U.S. Forest Service was on scene Sunday morning dealing with a small spot fire near the scene.

There were no injuries to firefighters or other responders.

Author Bio

Jim Cornelius, Editor in Chief

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Jim Cornelius is editor in chief of The Nugget and author of “Warriors of the Wildlands: True Tales of the Frontier Partisans.” A history buff, he explores frontier history across three centuries and several continents on his podcast, The Frontier Partisans. For more information visit


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