▶️ Bedrock Fire increases to 12,000 acres; incoming thunderstorms a concern


The Bedrock Fire in the Willamette National Forest, which has been largely responsible for the smoke in Deschutes County, has increased to 12,213 acres and is 5% contained. 

There is concern that gusty and erratic wins that are expected with incoming thunderstorms may hinder the fight against the fire.

Here is the Thursday morning update from InciWeb.

Basic Information
Current as of Thu, 08/03/2023 
Incident Type Wildfire
Cause Under investigation
Date of Origin
Location National Forest Service Road 18. Fall Creek Lake. Lowell, Oregon. Vida, Oregon
Incident Commander Brian Gales, Eric Riener
Northwest Incident Management Team 13
Coordinates 43° 58′ 17” Latitude
-122° 32′ 


” Longitude


Current Situation
Total Personnel: 766
Size 12,213 Acres
Percent of Perimeter Contained 5%
Estimated Containment Date 10/01/2023
Fuels Involved

Timber (Litter and Understory)

Closed Timber Litter 

Brush (2 feet)

The mixed ownership of private and federal lands, coupled with old fire scars, provides a checkerboard mosaic of fuel types. Mixed aged classes of timber from slash and young managed stands to late seral stage timber are spread across the landscape. Light and very dry lichen moss is draped in the tree canopies and accentuates spotting in mature stands.

Significant Events

All fuel size classes carry active fire behavior. Steep topography allows for uphill runs, often establishing in the crowns that produces prolific and productive spotting, up to ¾ miles. Afternoon diurnal wind activity drives fire spread up drainages such as Alder Creek, Hehe Creek, and Fall Creek to the northeast; and in the south in Andy and Rubble Creek. As fire moves into old burn scars, intensity decreases but abundant fine fuels can maintain fire spread.


Planned Actions

Indirect control lines placement on the west and north flanks are under construction and supported. Re-opening historic fire lines, helispots, and staging areas is proving useful. Division Y has established a strong anchor with Division A. Working with aviation support in the southeast is critical to this operational success. 

Control line preparation continues on the 1817 and 1821 roads along with fire line construction in Division J along the forest and private lands utilizing a mix of ODF and Federal resources. 
Heavy aviation utilization will occur in line construction areas supporting their holding. Retardant and scooper use will prove effective as air quality provides opportunity. 

Projected Incident Activity

12 hours: Thermal belt establishment allows for at least moderate fire spread throughout the night in the 1000 to 3000 foot elevation range. Good RH recovery is only apparent in the lower valley bottoms. Night burnout operations can progress until 2400 and add to acres consumed. Expect at least 50 acres of growth overnight.

24 Hours: NE and east fire spread will be most problematic in the Hehe, Tiller and Fall Creek drainages. Higher temperatures and lower RH will maintain active fire behavior. Although fire spread has checked up on tertiary road systems in the NE, fire is still expected to advance towards and possibly impact primary containment lines near Fawn Rock. South fire spread is not expected to advance due to suppression activity. Jones and Gales fire scars will continue to retard fire growth along the margins of the Bedrock Fire. 

48 Hours: Consistent weather conditions will allow for persistent fire growth towards the NE. Typical moderate fire activity in the margins. 

72 Hours: Fire advance in the NE could initiate the activation of suppression operations if not already done by this time frame.

Anticipated after 72 Hours: Similar activity expected. 


The IR flight on 8/1/2023 indicated the acreage of the Bedrock Fire is currently 11,182 acres. Growth to the north, east, south and west continues today. Containment is 5%. A joint delegation has been signed between the Willamete NF and ODF.

An incident occurred this operational period when a wheel came off a newer vehicle driving at slow speed. There was no damage to the vehicle other than to the brake drum. There were no injuries.
There was a Safecom for a bucket strike on a snag. There was no damage to the bucket or the helicopter. 


Current Weather
Weather Concerns

Observed Wednesday, 8/2:
Poor humidity recoveries were observed over the fire with iRAWS reporting highest readings of 50-59%. Warmer and drier air moved into the area on Wednesday leading to the highest temperatures (80-85) and lowest humidity (25-30%) observed over the past week. Smoke cleared early in the day allowing inversions to break up earlier than previous days.  

Forecast Thursday-Friday, 8/3-8/4
More warm and dry weather will be in place on Thursday before increasing clouds move into the area on Friday. High temperatures in the 80s are expected both days with relative humidity increasing from the upper-20s on Thursday to the mid-30s on Friday. A 10% chance of thunderstorms will be possible on Friday. The main threat from the thunderstorms will be gusty and erratic winds with little to no precipitation expected over the fire.


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