Tuesday, August 22, 2023

Umatilla National Forest reopens Olive Lake Campground

PENDLETON, Ore. (August 22, 2023) — With increased containment and reduced firefighting activity on the Ben Harrison Fire, Umatilla National Forest officials have reopened the Olive Lake Campground.

The Ben Harrison Fire is currently estimated at 95 acres and 100% contained, but the fire may still have some heat sources within the interior. Forest visitors should be cautious when entering any recently burned area and be aware of increased hazards, particularly snags (which are recently burned or dead trees). Dead or dying trees that remain standing after a fire are unstable, especially in high winds. Loose rocks and logs can be present in a burned area and are unpredictable, creating a falling a hazard. Additionally, burned vegetation can also contribute to landslides, mudslides and erosion when rain occurs. The ground in a burned area can also be unstable, due to burned-out roots beneath the soil. Even areas that have no visible fire and that appear cool can still have hot ash pits below the surface.  After soils and vegetation have been charred, rainfall that would normally be absorbed could run off extremely quickly.

Forest visitors may also encounter firefighter traffic, downed trees in roadways, dusty roads and areas of smoke. Please be alert when traveling on the Forest.

Fire danger rating on the Umatilla National Forest remains at HIGH and Public Use Restrictions involving chainsaw use are in effect. For more information regarding Restrictions, please contact the Information Hotline at (877) 958-9663.

The latest fire information will be posted on the Blue Mountains Fire Information Blog. To receive updates on fires in the Blue Mountains, follow our blog at http://bluemountainfireinfo.blogspot.com/.  

Additional information about the Umatilla National Forest is available at: http://www.fs.usda.gov/umatilla.


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