Sisters enters the burning season


Last updated 4/2/2024 at 9:37am

Deschutes National Forest firefighters plan to start spring prescribed burning in mid-April as conditions become favorable. The Deschutes National Forest may accomplish up to an estimated 11,000 acres of prescribed burning, including up to an estimated 7,000 acres on the Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District, 1,271 acres on the Crescent Ranger District, and 2,942 acres on the Sisters Ranger District.

Prescribed burns are planned north of Sisters on the east and west sides of Highway 20 just south of Indian Ford Campground; within the Metolius Basin including along the eastern side of FSR 14 and just north of Camp Sherman on the eastern side of FSR 14; and generally west of Sisters.

Firefighters implement understory prescribed burning to reduce wildfire risk to communities. According to the Forest Service, prescribed burning reintroduces and maintains fire within our fire-dependent ecosystem by removing concentrations of vegetation and restoring forest health while increasing public and firefighter safety. Once firefighters ignite prescribed burns, they monitor and patrol the units until they declare the burn out.

Prescribed burns, primarily conducted in spring and fall, are planned and implemented under specific conditions of temperature, wind, humidity, and vegetation moisture. Firefighters work with Oregon Department of Environmental Quality and Oregon Department of Forestry smoke forecasters to identify conditions that will minimize smoke impacts on people and communities. While prescribed fire managers take significant preventive measures, it’s likely that communities may experience some smoke during or immediately after a prescribed burn. Most smoke impacts occur during the night and early morning hours.

For more information on prescribed burning and smoke preparedness in Central Oregon, visit and for information specific to the Deschutes National Forest visit Visit to view an interactive map with planned burn locations. Text “COFIRE” to 888-777 to receive prescribed burn and wildfire text alerts. Follow along on X/Twitter @CentralORFire.


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