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Deschutes National Forest plans prescribed burns Tuesday east of Sunriver near Lava River Cave and south of Crescent

Rocket prescribed burn east of Sunriver 5-20
Deschutes National Forest
Map of Rocket prescribed burn east of Sunriver, near Lava River Cave
Five Mile Unit prescribed burn 5-21
Deschutes National Forest
Map of Five Mile Unit prescribed burn planned Tuesday south of Crescent.

BEND, Ore. (KTVZ) Firefighters on the Deschutes National Forest are planning prescribed burn operations Tuesday on the Bend-Fort Rock and Crescent ranger districts, east of Sunriver near Lava River Cave and south of Crescent.

Firefighters on the Bend-Fort Rock Ranger District are planning prescribed burn operations about 10 miles south of Bend, five miles east of Sunriver and a quarter-mile east of Lava Lands Visitor Center. If conditions are favorable, firefighters will ignite up to 261 acres east of Highway 97 near the Cottonwood Road interchange and directly east of Forest Service Road 9703, near Lava River Cave.

Ignitions on Rocket Prescribed Burn Units 9,10,11 and 12 are planned for 10 a.m. Smoke will be highly visible from Highway 97, Bend, La Pine and Sunriver. Sunriver and south Bend may experience some smoke impacts.

Road and trail closures are not anticipated, although the public is asked to use caution and slow down where fire traffic and firefighters are present along Forest Service Road 9703. This area has been previously thinned and mowed prior to returning low-intensity fire through prescribed burning.

The Crescent Ranger District plans to conduct up to 58 acres of prescribed burning on the Five Mile Unit 14 Prescribed Burn, about seven miles south of Crescent and about one and a half miles north of the Highway 58 and Highway 97 junction.

Ignitions are planned for 9 a.m. on Tuesday. No road or trail closures are anticipated. Smoke will be visible from Highway 97 and Highway 58.

Prescribed burning reintroduces and maintains fire within a fire-dependent ecosystem helping to stabilize and improve the resiliency of forest conditions while increasing public and firefighter safety. Once firefighters ignite prescribed burns, they patrol the units until they declare the burn out.

These prescribed burns are occurring within the Central Oregon Landscape, one of 21 focal landscapes identified within the Forest Service’s Wildfire Crisis Strategy. The implementation of these prescribed burns supports the Deschutes National Forest’s commitment to addressing the Wildfire Crisis Strategy which aims to reduce severity of wildfires, protect communities, and improve the health and resiliency of fire-dependent forests.

Prescribed burns can protect homes from tragic wildfires. Fire management officials work with Oregon Department of Forestry smoke specialists to plan prescribed burns. Prescribed burns are conducted when weather is most likely to move smoke up and away from our communities. While prescribed fire managers take significant preventive measures, it’s likely that communities may experience some smoke during or immediately after a prescribed burn. 

What does this mean for you?

During prescribed burns, smoke may settle in low-lying areas overnight and in the early morning hours.

  • All residents are encouraged to close doors and windows at night to avoid smoke impacts.
  • If available, use a portable air cleaner. Air cleaners work best running with doors and windows closed. You can also create a DIY air cleaner.
  • If you have a central air system, use it to filter air. Use high-efficiency filters if possible.
  • When driving in smoky areas, drivers should slow down, turn on headlights and turn air to recirculating.
  • If you have heart or lung disease, asthma, or other chronic conditions, pay attention to how you feel and if symptoms of heart or lung disease worsen, consider contacting your health care professional.
  • Go to to learn more about smoke safety and prescribed burning in Central Oregon and visit When Smoke is in the Air for more smoke preparedness resources.

For more information on prescribed burning in Central Oregon, visit and for information specific to the Deschutes National Forest visit Follow on X/Twitter @CentralORFire. Text “COFIRE” to 888-777 to receive wildfire and prescribed fire text alerts.

Article Topic Follows: Fire Alert

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