** THE CONTROLLED BURN HAS BEEN CANCELLED FOR TUESDAY, SEPTEMBER 6, 2011 DUE TO HIGH TEMPERATURES AND STRONG EAST WINDS. **
With weather permitting on Tuesday, September 6, 2011, Portland Fire & Rescue (PF&R) and Gresham Fire & Emergency Services (GF&ES) will be conducting a controlled burn of two grassland areas in the southeast section of Powell Butte Nature Park. The burn will reduce non-native shrubs and brambles that pose an increased risk of wildfires on the butte and will benefit birds and wildlife, help re-establish native vegetation, improve the park experience for visitors, and provide a training opportunity for Portland firefighters.
PF&R and GF&ES will begin the burn by deliberately setting controlled blazes to burn 24 acres and will be on-site during the burn to assist with fire control. The burn site will be carefully monitored by onsite fire personnel for several days after burn begins for any excessive smoke conditions and/or fire flare-ups.
Please note that Powell Butte Nature Park will be open for use during the burn, but public access will be restricted to certain areas away from the fire zone, including the Johnson Creek Trail, Pioneer Orchard Trail, Orchard Loop viewpoint, and Wild Hawthorne Trail.
Portland Parks & Recreation (PP&R), the Wildland Unit of Portland Fire, Portland Bureau of Environmental Services and the Portland Water Bureau (PWB) are collaborating on the first of three planned prescriptive burns at natural area grassland habitats within the city. Powell Butte will be the site of the first operation, with Baltimore Woods and Elk Rock Island Natural Areas being scheduled for later in this summer or early fall.
For the past 15 years, PP&R and PF&R have worked together to plan and implement small prescriptive burns to improve the ecological health of grassland and oak woodland habitats in several Parks Natural Areas and reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire by removing hazardous fuels. These prescriptive burns also provide important training opportunities for PF&R firefighters to learn and practice techniques of wildland firefighting operations and management.
Portland Fire & Rescue
We Respond: Always Ready, Always There
September 2, 2011