Western Juniper Thinning Project Slated for Summer

Prineville, OR–Three government agencies are working together to reduce improve habitat and reduce the risk of wildfires at Ochoco State Scenic Viewpoint  just west of Prineville.

The Oregon Parks and Recreation Department (OPRD), the Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) and Crook County’s Fire Ready initiative will conduct a project to thin Western Juniper stands within the Ochoco State Scenic Viewpoint.  The project is designed to reduce fire hazard within the juniper stands by thinning out trees and pruning other trees in the most densely populated areas.  Tree trunks will be removed for firewood, while the limbs will either be burned or chipped, depending on the location.

Work is scheduled to begin later this summer. Phase 1 will concentrate on buffering the Highway 126 corridor leading through the property, as well as the entrance road up to the viewpoint. Tree thinning will not only reduce fire hazard on the property, but stimulates new bunchgrass and forb growth for wildlife forage.