Tree planting day is fast approaching on February 6th. Our RSVP list is almost full and we anticipate 150 youth participants.
The most important items to remember are a shovel and raingear. Rubber boots for kids, along with gloves, a rain jacket and rain pants, if you have them. It is a great idea to bring an extra pair of shoes and a kitchen-sized garbage bag. When your angels return to the car, you can place all of the muddy, dirty gear into the bag before it destroy the inside of your car!
Tree Planting Day will be located near Blodgett, Oregon. It is a 20 minute drive from the Philomath High School, where we will all meet. After leaving a dual lane Benton County Road, you will be driving on single-lane forest roads for a total of about 3 miles. Note that there is a car wash on Philomath Blvd, near Safeway, if you need it on the return trip!
We want everyone to be safe and have fun. We will only cancel Tree Planting Day if there is dangerous ice, snow or wind. Rain will NOT slow us down!
Most of our recreation permits expire on 12/31 every year. If you have a permit and would like to renew, please stop by our office. We are open 7 am to 4:30 pm, M-F. This week, we close at 12 pm on New Year’s Eve and are closed on Friday, 1/1/16. Happy New Year!
The Oregon Dept. of Forestry issued this news release.
Measuring the 2015 Oregon wildfire season in gallons
December 22, 2015
Rod Nichols, (503) 945-7425, firstname.lastname@example.org
So, just how severe was Oregonâ€™s wildfire season this summer? About 838,000 gallonsâ€™ worth, according to Neal Laugle, the Department of Forestryâ€™s (ODF) aviation unit manager. Thatâ€™s how much liquid retardant the departmentâ€™s air tankers dumped on fires in 2015. And that figure doesnâ€™t include the thousands of gallons of straight water dropped by ODF contracted helicopters in close support of ground firefighting forces.
The window of opportunity in which to stop a new blaze from growing large has shrunk from days to hours, due to the extreme summer weather and forest fuel conditions. Fire managers with ODF and the fire associations increasingly rely on air power to even the odds, launching air and ground resources simultaneously, which often shaves response time to minutes.
ODFâ€™s contracted large air tanker can reach a fire quickly and deliver 3,000 gallons of retardant in a single load. This slows fire growth and buys time for fire engines and hand crews to arrive on scene and begin direct attack. Single-engine air tankers (SEATs) use their speed and maneuverability to box in a fire with multiple, smaller retardant drops. All told, air tankers logged more than 700 flight hours this summer. The agencyâ€™s helicopters put in 834 hours slinging water to hot spots with their cable-suspended buckets.
Fire aviation snapshot
Statistics currently available are for ODF– and fire association-protected lands west of the Cascades. This summer, most of the aerial firefighting took place east of the Cascades (86 percent), followed by southern Oregon (14 percent), and northwestern Oregon (less than one percent).
Â§ In 2015, the Douglas Forest Protective Association in Douglas County flew 60 helicopter missions and also assisted ODFâ€™s Southwest Oregon District and the Willamette National Forest. A small plane flew 55 missions that included fire detection, monitoring of existing fires, and guiding air operations (air tankers and helicopters) over fires.
Â§ The departmentâ€™s Southwest Oregon District (Jackson and Josephine counties) conducted 150 missions, including air tanker and helicopter flights. Helicopters performed air attack, helitack (insertion of firefighters at fires, along with making water drops) and transport of personnel and cargo.
Â§ Coos Forest Protective Association logged 55 flight hours on 19 different fires in Coos and Douglas counties to quench the flames with water drops. In addition, CFPA aircraft flew reconnaissance during lightning events to detect new fires.
ODFâ€™s aggressive firefighting tactics can create an â€œairshowâ€ of multiple tankers and helicopters over an active fire. When the meter is running on all these aircraft, costs mount quickly. But stopping even one high-potential blaze from spreading to thousands of acres can save millions of dollars in the long term.
As an example, the 26,000-acre Stouts Creek Fire in Douglas County cost $37 million to extinguish. And that is just for suppression. Damage to the forest resource, which includes timber as well as fish and wildlife habitats, typically totals at least three times the firefighting expense.
No one can accurately predict the intensity of future fire seasons. But the current trend has the department, its partner resource agencies, and private forest landowners scrambling to meet the challenge. Aviation will undoubtedly continue to play a major role in Oregonâ€™s fire protection system in the years to come.
If you would like to find and cut your Christmas tree on Starker Forests lands, please come to our office to get a permit. This year, available trees are naturally grown and not shaped.
Permits are available for a $5 donation to Old Mill Center or the Boys and Girls Club (your choice). Starker Forests will match the donation to each organization.
We will give you a map of the area we have selected for cutting Christmas trees. The area is near Blodgett.
Christmas tree permits are available M-F 7 am-4:30 pm until December 23rd.