Whitewater Fire Update: Mt Jefferson Wilderness

Release Date: Aug 11, 2017

Contact(s): Fire Information: 503-867-7707

Yesterday’s Operations: Increase in acreage yesterday resulted from the use of firing operations to manage fire intensity and secure control lines. Fire spread was slowed by rains and cooler temperatures last night. Yesterday, resources from the fire assisted in the suppression of eight new starts on the National Forest. 

Fire Prevention: There are currently 15 large, uncontained fires burning in the northwest. Any new human caused fires will take valuable resources away from these efforts. Please be careful and follow your local restrictions.

  • Approximate Size: 5,844 acres
  • Containment:  0%
  • Incident Commander: Eric Knerr
  • Resources on Fire
    • Crews: 18
    • Helicopters: 6
    • Masticators: 7
    • Engines: 19
    • Water Tenders: 11
    • Dozers: 5
    • Personnel: 665

Today’s Operations: Lightning late in the day yesterday has firefighters patrolling the area for new fire starts. Today’s operations will focus on reinforcing fire lines and securing lightning caused fires from yesterday by utilizing crews and resources.

Weather and Fire Behavior: Fire meteorologists predict an increased chance of thunderstorms tonight, with scattered showers occurring on various sections of the fire throughout the day. Temperatures will be in the upper 80s at the fire line.  Firefighters expect moderate fire behavior today, due to cooler temperatures, higher humidity and winds out of the northwest.  Firefighters are on the lookout for aggressive fire behavior, and a high potential for rolling, burning materials that may increase fire spread.

Smoke Forecast: Widespread smoke from multiple fires in the northwest is impacting the Central Oregon area. Smoke from the Whitewater Fire may affect the communities of Detroit, Marion Forks and Idanha.  Check the Oregon Smoke Blog for more updates and other useful information:  http://oregonsmoke.blogspot.com/

Location: The Whitewater Fire is burning in the Mount Jefferson Wilderness and adjacent forest lands, approximately 13 miles east of Detroit, Oregon. The Incident Command Post, located at Hoodoo Ski Resort, is closed to non-fire traffic.

Area Closure: To protect public and firefighters safety, the Willamette and Deschutes National Forests have closed all trail access points into Jefferson Park inside the Mt. Jefferson Wilderness, including a 28-mile stretch of the Pacific Crest Trail. The area closure also includes a portion of the Willamette National Forest west of the wilderness boundary and east of the town of Detroit. Individuals who have private lands within the closure, or leased lands, will be allowed to enter as long as it is safe to do so. For specific land closures, see the area closure order and map

The following trailheads are now closed:

Willamette National Forest: Bingham Ridge, Minto Mountain, Pamelia Lake, Woodpecker Ridge, Whitewater Creek, Cheat Creek, Triangulation Peak, Leone Lake, South Breitenbush and Crown Lake.

Deschutes National Forest: Bear Valley/Rockpile Lake, Cabot Lake, Jefferson Lake and Brush Creek.

Pacific Crest Trail: Approximately 30 miles of the trail is closed.

Inciweb: https://inciweb.nwcg.gov/incident/article/5420/37544/