Reporters Learn from Cow Creek Umpqua Forestry on Wildfires

Journalists from across the Northwest joined the Cow Creek Umpqua Forestry and Wildfire Management teams on Cow Creek Umpqua lands in May.

The group was organized through the Institute for Journalism and Natural Resources. Reporters visited several areas across Oregon to learn more about wildfires, prevention, land stewardship and cultural burning as West heads into wildfire season.

While on Cow Creek Umpqua lands, journalists toured the Joe Hall property because it is an area that historically experienced frequent fires, both from Tribal use and natural occurrences. Originally homesteaded in the late 1800s, it was subsequently sold to a local private timber company in the 1970s. In 2016, the Cow Creek Umpqua Tribe acquired the property and initiated collaborative efforts with the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to restore the oak woodlands and meadows.

Cow Creek Umpqua Forestry continues to work on fuel reduction in the area to ensure safe reintroduction of fire to the landscape. Cow Creek Umpqua people used prescribed burning in the Umpqua Rogue Divide since time immemorial. Traditionally, Tribal families would set fire to their summer camp meadows as they left for winter camps in the valleys. They understood that regular fires protected the forest, made space for deer and elk for the next hunting seasons, and improved the health of the soil for plants.