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Siskiyou Mountain Range

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Miller Complex Fire Report: Mixed Severity Fire on the Siskiyou Crest

The Abney Fire burned through large portions of the Condrey Mountain and Kangaroo Inventoried Roadless Areas on the Siskiyou Crest in 2017.

The Klamath Forest Alliance has released the Miller Complex Fire Report, a detailed exploration of the Miller Complex Fire, its ecological implications, fire severity, and fire suppression impacts. 

The Miller Complex began on August 13, 2017 with a spectacular thunderstorm. Lightning crashed down throughout the Upper Applegate watershed, igniting 27 fires from the high country on the Siskiyou Crest to the low-elevation foothills of the Upper Applegate Valley. Four major blazes burned throughout the summer, including the Burnt Peak Fire, Creedence Fire, Abney Fire and Knox Fire. 

The fires burned in a healthy, mixed-severity fire mosaic, rejuvenating fire dependent plant communities, maintaining many late successional habitats, reducing fuel and restoring the process of fire to over 36,000 acres. Despite extensive efforts and significant environmental impacts associated with suppressing the Miller Complex, the Abney Fire was only extinguished by the first snow and rain in late October. 

The Abney Fire burned in a beneficial fire mosaic with highly variable fire effects.

Large portions of the Siskiyou Crest burned in a natural mixed-severity fire mosaic, including some of our wildest landscapes in the Red Buttes Wilderness Area, the Kangaroo Inventoried Roadless Area, Condrey Mountain Inventoried Roadless Area, Collings-Kinney Inventoried Roadless Area and the Stricklin Butte Roadless Area. 

The Miller Complex was a beautiful, diverse and rejuvenating natural event. The beneficial and highly variable fire mosaic will harbor extreme levels of biodiversity and fire resilience for many, many years to come. Fire is perhaps the most important natural process affecting terrestrial habitats in the Siskiyou Mountains, and the Miller Complex demonstrates the potential of managed wildfire as a restoration tool. 

Low-severity fire effects in the Collings-Kinney Roadless Area following the Burnt Peak Fire.

Please read our full Miller Complex Fire Report.


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