Wallowa-Whitman National Forest Issues Public Use Restrictions

Wallowa-Whitman National Forest will move to Phase C Public Use Restrictions effective midnight tonight. These restrictions are also in place for all Oregon State Parks properties across Oregon.

Baker City, OR: Forest officials will implement Phase C public use restrictions at 12:01 AM on Thursday, August 20, 2015 on the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest due to extreme fire danger, the potential for human caused fires, and concern for public safety.

Phase C Fire restrictions are:

  1. Campfires are not allowed.  Liquid and bottle gas stoves only.
  2. No internal combustions engine operation, except for motor vehicles.
  3. Smoking is allowed only in enclosed vehicles and buildings, developed recreation sites, or cleared areas.
  4. No off-road/off-trail vehicle travel or travel on roads not cleared of standing grass or other flammable material; no vehicle travel on those Forest Service roads where access has been impeded or blocked by earthen berm, logs, boulders, barrier, barricade or gate, or as otherwise identified in the Fire Order.

Certain exceptions apply within the Eagle Cap Wilderness and the Hells Canyon National Recreation Area. To view the complete Phase C Fire Order and Fire Closures on the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest please visit www.fs.usda.gov/wallowa-whitman/

The Wallowa-Whitman National Forest is currently experiencing a high volume of fire activity. The fire activity can make recreation activities unpleasant and raises safety concerns for visitors.

Excessive smoke inhalation can be unhealthy for many individuals. A good source for information on smoke conditions is available at http://oregonsmoke.blogspot.com/ In addition to the health effects the smoke is causing poor visibility across the forest and can impair driving, especially at night. To ensure that you arrive at your destination safely please check current highway conditions and closures at https://tripcheck.com/ before you leave.

Several Area Closures are in effect on the Whitman and La Grande Districts due to the Cornet/Windy Ridge, Eagle Complex and Merry-Go-Round Fires. To view a map of the closure area and the closure order please visit www.fs.usda.gov/wallowa-whitman. Also available at this website are daily fire updates from the Joint Information Center and the Public Use Restrictions for the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest.

Considering the current fires and the potential for more fire starts, Deputy Forest Supervisor Chuck Oliver said, “The recent wildfires in the region have stretched the Wallowa-Whitman’s fire suppression resources and the nation’s firefighting resources. Non-fire Forest Service personnel are also working hard to assist with fire management efforts in a variety of ways. Containment of these fires may take several weeks. We appreciate the cooperation of forest users in respecting the Fire Area Closures and following the Public Use Restrictions regarding campfires.”

With hunting season around the corner and increased recreation through Labor Day weekend it is important to: Know before you go. Always check with your local Ranger Station prior to your trip to get the most up to date information on current fire activity, closures, fire danger, and fire restrictions for the area. Contact information for local Ranger Districts is available at www.fs.usda.gov/detail/wallowa-whitman/about-forest/offices

Additional Fire information can be found at:

Phone: Fire and Evacuation Information: (541) 523-2905

Email: BakerCoJointInfo@gmail.com (Email this address for daily fire updates.)

Blog: http://bluemountainfireinfo.blogspot.com

Facebook:

https://www.facebook.com/CornetFire

https://www.facebook.com/ElDoradoFire2015

https://www.facebook.com/EagleComplex2015

Inciweb:

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4478/ (Cornet)

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4497/ (Windy Ridge)

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4502/ (El Dorado)

http://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/4481 / (Eagle Complex)

 

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