More than 6,500 lightning strikes hit Bend and Redmond between 2 and 5 p.m. Sunday, according to Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch. COID spokesman Dennis Benson said heavy rains assisted in controlling the fires, but 36 fires were still reported by Sunday evening.
He said firefighters were also called to multiple abandoned campfires Sunday, preventing them from responding to the lightning-caused fires.
But the storms that rattled Central Oregon on Sunday are likely gone for the week, according to the National Weather Service in Pendleton.
“It should be a lot quieter here for the rest of the week,” said forecaster Marilyn Lohmann. “We will probably see clouds breaking up (this) morning. We’re still in a southwesterly flow, so some of the mountain areas might have some isolated thunderstorms. But it should be a lot drier.”
Lohmann said skies this week are likely to be mostly partly cloudy, with highs in the 70s and low 80s and evening temperatures likely to drop into the mid-40s.
— Bulletin staff report