The Summer Lake Wildfire Risk Reduction project area will focus on an approximately 600 acres within an overall 1,800- acre area with multiple ownerships. Three private landowners make up about 1,358 acres with the remaining 475 acres under BLM management. The project area is flanked by three wildfire scars and the US Forest Service has been focused on conducting thinning treatments to the boundaries.
This area is the last dense forested stand at risk of wildfire. A stand that would lead wildfire to four permanent residences and one hunting cabin. The area is currently being surveyed for pre-wildfire roads and contingency lines within a grant agreement between the USFS and the High Desert Rangeland Fire Protection Association (HDRFPA).
The implementation of a thinning project would successfully complete a wildfire contingency line spanning nearly 10 miles from Paisley to the project area west boundary. Additionally, the treatment would improve watershed function in four sub-watersheds of the region.
Lake County Umbrella Watershed Council, Lakeview Bureau of Land Management, Fremont-Winema National Forest, Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife, Oregon Department of Forestry, and the private landowners within the project area.
With funding secured, treatment areas identified, bid tours and contracts established, we have began with implementation of thinning and piling during the spring 2022. Several units have been completed and continuation of thinning and piling will commence in the spring and summer of 2023 once access is attainable. More funding is being pursued to add on to the existing acres identified and complete the wildfire risk reduction for this project area. In October of 2022, we applied for a Summer Lake All Lands Restoration grant to expand our efforts further north within the greater Summer Lake community. We will find out about the application status in the spring of 2023.