B&B Complex Forest and Fire History

Mt. Jefferson from "Grizzly Farm," on the banks of the flooded "Fall River." Photograph taken by Myra Albert and first published in 1894 (Halstead and Jones 1894: 50).

On Tuesday, August 19, 2003, the Bear Butte Fire started at the north end of the Mount Jefferson Wilderness area. Within hours the Booth Fire was ignited close to Henkel Butte Lookout. The most probable cause of the fires was lightning. The next day, the fires joined and became the B&B Complex Fire. The fire was declared contained by Friday, September 26, having burned more than 90,000 mostly-forested acres of Douglas-fir, ponderosa pine, mixed conifer, mountain hemlock, lodgepole pine, and bug-killed snags.

The B&B Complex Fire straddled Highway 20 on both sides of the Santiam Pass, covering thousands of acres of mature wet west-side and dry east-side forests. The burned area is managed under four distinct policies within three different land ownership types. Over half of the burned area is federal land designated as Wilderness in the Willamette National Forest, managed by the Detroit Ranger Station. Much of the remainder is National Forest land in the Deschutes National Forest, managed by the Sisters Ranger Station. A relatively small portion of the B&B fire area is owned by private landowners, located mostly in the southeastern part of the burn, and managed under poicies adminstered by the Oregon Department of Forestry. The remainder is Warm Springs Indian land, in the north-eastern area of the burn, and managed under formal tribal policies.


Title Description
Geology The geological history of the B&B Study Area, with a focus on the last 12,000 years.
Climate and Weather Climate and weather history of the B&B Study Area, with a focus on the last 500 years.
  Early Historical Accounts Written eyewitness descriptions of the fires, forests, and people of the B&B Study Area, 1826-1900.
  General Land Office Surveys General Land Office Survey maps and notes for the B&B Study Area, 1854-1910.
Historical Photographs Photographs of the B&B Study Area that illustrate its forest, fire, and human history, 1860-2004.
Historical Forestry Maps Forestry and fire maps of the B&B Study Area, 1901-2004.
  Aerial Photographs  
Historical Forest Research Studies Documented forest science and historical research studies and findings of geographic or thematic interest, 1880-2004.
News Accounts News accounts and public opinions regarding the B&B Complex, and related issues regarding the Tillamook Forest and Biscuit Salvage management proposals.


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