NEAR PINE GROVE, Ore. — The Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) is reporting this morning that firefighters working overnight on the 570-acre White River Fire extinguished remaining hot spots inside of the fire’s perimeter. The White River Fire started Saturday afternoon in the White River Wild & Scenic area, 12 miles west of Tygh Valley.
Fire crews today continue to improve fire lines, tightening the protective barrier around the blaze, and stringing hoses deeper into the burned area, according to a press release from ODF. Teams of fallers are also working with firefighters to eliminate hazardous trees where crews are working.
The White River Canyon has difficult terrain for firefighters. It’s very steep and footing is poor, burned trees fall with little warning, and firefighters also need to watch out for rattlesnakes, according to ODF.
No structures are immediately threatened by the fire, but there are widely scattered homes, cabins and other structures around the fire’s fringe. The nearest community is Pine Grove, approximately 2.5 miles south of the fire.
The Mt. Hood National Forest, Barlow Ranger District, is working with Oregon Department of Forestry to ensure public safety while recreating on the White River. Because the White River Fire is burning on both sides of the river, making the riverbank unsafe and causing visibility problems due to smoke, the Mt. Hood National Forest is asking kayakers to hold off using the Keeps Mill Campground launch site and others on the Forest until river passage is safe.
The fire is 45 percent contained, and the suppression cost thus far is $767, 428. Resources assigned to this fire include 451 personnel, six helicopters, eight engines, four bulldozers, and one water tender. The cause of the fire is still under investigation.