Seven months ago, Central Oregonians felt the impact of some of the worst wildfires in this state’s history. Now there is growing concern that dry fuels across the region could ignite even bigger fires this year.

Tinderbox conditions have already ignited several fires around Central Oregon this year, even as higher elevations are still blanketed with snow. Part of that is due to a drying out of the forests at lower elevations, which are experiencing some of the lowest moisture levels recorded in years.

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Michael Kohn has been public lands and environment reporter with The Bulletin since 2019. He enjoys hiking in the hills and forests near Bend with his family and exploring the state of Oregon.

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