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2,300-acre north-central Oregon fire 40% contained; Hwy. 206, Cottonwood Canyon State Park reopen

Aerial view of Cottonwood Fire along John Day River
CO Fire Management Service
Aerial view of Cottonwood Fire along John Day River

WASCO, Ore. (KTVZ) – A new wildfire southeast of Wasco in north-central Oregon raced across more than 2,300 acres on both sides of the John Day River on Tuesday, prompting closure of a state highway and nearby Cottonwood Canyon State Park, but both reopened Wednesday as crews stopped the blaze and had it 40% contained.

Central Oregon Fire Management Service firefighters responded Tuesday afternoon to the Cottonwood Fire (Incident #748) burning 17 miles southeast of Wasco adjacent to Highway 206 in the John Day River drainage. The fire is burning on Prineville District-BLM, state and private lands.

The fire was estimated as of Tuesday evening at 4,000 acres and 0% contained, as it was established on both sides of the John Day River. But the fire was stopped by day's end, and later re-mapped at 2,316 acres.

Firefighters conducted mop-up operations Wednesday and used aircraft as needed to check on any hot spots.

Resources on scene Tuesday included 12 engines and miscellaneous overhead, in addition to several local and county resources. Firefighters on the ground were supported throughout the day by two large air tankers, four single-engine air tankers (SEAT planes), a lead plane, a Type 3 helicopter and air attack. Additional resources were en route late Tuesday.

State Highway 206 was closed between Condon and Wasco but reopened by Wednesday morning.

"Please use caution if driving this route as firefighters are working in the area mopping up the Cottonwood Fire," officials said.

Motorists can monitor road closure and travel information by visiting Additionally, Cottonwood State Park was closed, but reopened Wednesday. More information regarding Cottonwood State Park can be found by visiting

For current wildland fire information, the public can visit or follow fire information on Twitter @CentralORFire.

Article Topic Follows: Fire Alert

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