Eastern Washington’s dry forests have evolved with and depend on regular, low-intensity fire to thrive.

To protect communities and timber resources, we have been aggressively suppressing wildfire for over 100 years, and today, large portions of our forests are unnaturally dense with high levels of forest fuels, and less able to resist insects, disease and severe fire. When wildfire does occur — as it always has, and always will — these unhealthy forest conditions increase the likelihood of megafires that can’t be effectively contained from ground or air. We’ve seen the devastating effects on our communities.

Prescribed burning, or controlled burning, is a time-tested and effective tool that maximizes the benefits that low-intensity fire can provide within a variety of landscapes. Professional fire managers safely administer the right fire, in the right place, at the right time, and work closely with air quality officials to minimize smoke near people. Combined with strategic timber management and thinning, controlled burning can make forests and neighboring communities more resilient to wildfire, and help protect clean water, wildlife habitat, and forest products for generations to come.

It's time to put fire to work.

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Cascadia TREX

Burning Together, Learning Together

Last fall, firefighters converged in Leavenworth, WA for two weeks, from September 24th to October 6th, to learn how to safely and effectively implement prescribed fire. The Cascadia Prescribed Fire Training Exchange (TREX) was a collaborative training program that brought together diverse partners from across the country to burn together and learn together. With over 50 TREX events conducted since 2008 across the country, this is the first time this training has been brought to Washington. Through this training, participants worked on restoring fire adapted ecosystems, reducing wildfire risks to communities, and increasing their expertise and training with fire.

Training participants were from the Washington Department of Natural Resources, Washington Department of Fish & Wildlife, U.S. Forest Service, Chelan County Fire District 1, Chelan County Fire District 3, Kittitas Valley Fire & Rescue, National Park Service, and Oregon Department of Forestry. Together they implemented 420 acres of prescribed fire on US Forest Service, National Park Service, The Nature Conservancy, and private lands.

This training was hosted by the Chumstick Wildfire Stewardship Coalition, Washington Prescribed Fire Council, Okanogan-Wenatchee National Forest, The Nature Conservancy, and numerous other partners.

Where did we work?

Keep up to Date

    Working across Washington state.

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    Forest Resiliency Burning Pilot

    In the Spring of 2016, the Washington State Legislature passed House Bill 2928, the Forest Resiliency Burning Pilot project. This Pilot brought stakeholders together from across Washington to examine the role of prescribed burning in creating healthier, more resilient forests. Stakeholders discussed how to improve prescribed fire to work for all of us.


    Cooperative Burning

    We don't always have the money or resources to get work done on our own, so we rely on our partners and our partners rely on us. Cooperative burning is one way we can get more work down on the ground. See how the Mt. Adam's Resource Stewards has worked with partners across the state to manage their community forest.

    Stay Informed

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    Washington Burn Bans

    Fire is a tool for all of us. Keep up to date on the latest news on where and when you can burn. Remember, even if you can't burn, fire professionals with the right resources, right people, and right expertise may still be able to burn. Always check before lighting the match.

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    Forest Service Fire Activity Map

    The Okanogan-Wenatchee Forest is your home, your playground, your vacation, your solitude, your challenge, your job, and your family reunion. See where the Forest Service is working to protect our communities and forests through planned, prescribed fires.

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    Washington Smoke Information

    Fire is a natural part of our forests, and that means smoke too. Monitor smoke and air quality near you and learn how to protect yourself from smoke.


    How You Can Help

    We all need to take care of our land. That's why federal, state, local, and tribal agencies, and private landowners are using prescribed fire where it makes sense, restoring forests and returning good fire to the landscape. We all can help by taking care of our homes and lands to be more resistant to fire. There are several steps you can take to help.

    Learn how prescribed fire benefits our forests, communities, and wildlife.

    Help protect firefighters by making your home and property fire adapted.