Winter closures for recreation, wildlife begin tomorrow across the forest

Bend, Ore. – With significant snow forecasted for the week in Central Oregon, the Deschutes National Forest will close the gate on Forest Road 16 outside of Sisters near Three Creek Sno-park and the gate to Tumalo Falls outside of Bend for the season on Tuesday, November 26.


Beginning December 1, winter wildlife closures will take effect across the forest. There are four winter wildlife closure areas on the Deschutes National Forest—Cabin/Silver Lake, Metolius Winter Range, Opine Travel Management Area and Tumalo Winter Range. Motorized vehicles (including snowmobiles and electric bicycles) are prohibited in the closure areas to protect deer and elk during the winter. These protected areas usually have minimal amounts of snow cover and provide vegetation for forage, hiding cover and protection from weather. For more information including maps of these area, please visit the “What is winter range?” section at:


The public is reminded to be cautious when driving on all forest roads in the winter months. Not all roads will be gated, and those that are blocked by snow or water should be considered impassable for public safety as well as the protection of natural resources.  The public needs to be prepared at all times, whether it is a short or long journey into the forest. Please take all precautions as weather and road conditions can change rapidly.  Be prepared for winter driving, limited sight distance and bumpy driving on all Forest Service roads.  Stay prepared for by bringing extra clothing, food, water, blankets, first aid kit, shovel, tire chains and let someone know your destination and expected day/time of return.

For more information on winter range, visit:




USDA is an equal opportunity provider, employer and lender