PRINEVILLE, Ore. – The Ochoco National Forest today has reduced the closure area surrounding the Desolation Fire, which is still burning within Mill Creek Wilderness.
Beginning today, the closure is restricted to Wildcat Trail #833, which transects Mill Creek Wilderness. The trail is closed to the public from its junction with Belknap Trail #833A on the south to its junction with Wildcat North Trailhead.
About 6 miles of Forest Road 27 also remain closed, from its junction with Forest Road 2745 on the west side to its junction with Forest Road 2730-250. (See the accompanying map and order here: https://www.fs.usda.gov/Internet/FSE_DOCUMENTS/fseprd560264.pdf)
Crews with heavy equipment are still working along Forest Road 27, making it unsafe for the public to drive among working feller bunchers and log trucks. The work is expected to continue for at least another week.
The Desolation Fire is still burning, although at a low intensity and it has not grown or moved in more than a week. The fire remains 4,512 acres with 30 percent containment. Around 34 firefighters are still working on the fire under a Type 4 incident management team.
While only the specified road and trail are closed to the public, the National Forest would like to urge hunters and anyone else entering the wilderness to use caution around recently-burned areas. Pockets of heat may remain in places and dead trees could pose a threat of falling down.