Crater Lake, OR – Crater Lake National Park Fire Management staff are preparing to implement portions of the West Highway 62 prescribed fire project.

The unit is located along both sides of West Highway 62.  Approximately 44 acres containing roughly 2200 piles are in the areas scheduled to be burned this fall.  These piles are from the construction of fuel breaks along Highway 62.

Fire managers expect to begin implementation as early as Tuesday, October 1, pending favorable conditions.  Ignitions will continue throughout the fall as conditions allow until the project is complete, or heavy snow prevents further burn operations.  Weather, fire behavior, and smoke forecasts will be monitored before, during, and after the burns to ensure desired fire effects are achieved.  Fire management personnel will patrol and monitor the prescribed fires until they are completely out.

The National Park Service uses prescribed fire as a tool to help reduce the intensity of wildfires by removing excess accumulations of forest fuels resulting from fire suppression.  This project will improve forest health by reducing the amount of dead woody debris that can lead to larger, more intense fires during periods of high fire danger.  Fire encourages establishment and re-growth of grasses and herbaceous plant species, and increases habitat diversity for wildlife.

All park roads and trails are expected to remain open during prescribed fire operations.  Motorists should watch for signs and reduce their speed, as personnel and equipment are working on and adjacent to the road.

For additional information, please call Crater Lake National Park’s Fire Management Officer at 541-594-3062.