Prescribed Fire in Wilderness

Firefighters lighting fire in understoryWhat We Are Proposing

The Willamette National Forest is proposing to burn some selected areas in the Mt. Washington Wilderness. The entire project area will not be burned and when completed there will be a mosaic of burned and unburned vegetation across the landscape.

Project Vicinity Map with link to the project area

Scott Mountain Project Area Map (pdf ~ 351 kb)
(Mt. Washington Wilderness - Willamette National Forest)


  • To protect wilderness values
  • To improve firefighter and public safety
  • To reduce risk from wildfire to infrastructure and natural resources outside the wilderness.

The prescribed fires would create breaks in the continuous vegetation, resulting in conditions that could improve opportunities to allow lightning-caused fires play their natural role in the wilderness. You can review our thinking and rationale for doing this project in wilderness in the Minimum Requirements Decision Guide (MRDG) document. (pdf ~ 164 kb)


  • We completed two rounds of scoping, the first round in early 2013 and the second round during summer 2014.
  • We posted signs at project area trailheads (summer/fall 2012 and 2013) asking for your thoughts and comments.
  • You can follow and comment on the project throughout the NEPA process (starting January 2013)
  • The environmental analysis was out for public comment fall 2015.
  • The draft decision is expected to be release fall 2016.
  • We would burn the project area once a decision is made and on the ground conditions are right (earliest: fall 2017)


Scott Mountain Project Area (Mt. Washington Wilderness):

Matt Peterson, Project Team Leader
Willamette National Forest, 541-225-6421


Thumbnail of vicinity map for prescribed fire in wilderness project

Vicinity Map & Project Area Map

Photo of burning in wilderness with fire along ground

Prescribed Fire in Wilderness