Restoration Work near Phil's Trail area
Popular mountain biking trails will be temporarily closed.
You may have noticed some activity in the forests west of Bend. Restoration work (thinning, mowing, and prescribed burning) near the Phil's Trail area aims to put the forest on a trajectory to grow healthier trees, improve wildlife habitat, and reduce the risk of high-severity wildfire. In order to keep bikers, hikers, dogs, kids, and logging operators safe, some trails are temporarily closed while this important work is being done.
Updated: May 10, 2021
This Monday, 5/10 and Tuesday 5/11, fire and fuel specialists with the Deschutes National Forest will conduct prescribed fire operations adjacent to Bend and within the Phil’s Trail and Welcome Station area. The area includes portions of Ticket to Ride, COD-Alt, COD-Paint It Black, and COD-Rock Stacker, which will be closed during fire operations. Forest Service Road 4604 also will be closed along with several smaller Forest Service Roads. Closed roads and trails will be signed.
Ongoing Temporary Closures
Earlier this year, contractors began selective logging in the Euro Stewardship contract area. They will also use large mowers to reduce the height of flammable understory fuels such as brush and small trees, which decreases the potential impacts of a wildfire.
Trails closed Monday – Friday (see map below):
- Lower Whoops, Pine Drops, EXT, and the northwest portion of Storm King from the junction with Forest Road 4615 and the junction with Phil’s Trail.
- The western-most portion of Phil’s between the junction with EXT (near Forest Road 300) and its western terminus at the junction with Pine Drops, Upper and Lower Whoops, and Skyliners trails.
PLEASE OBEY SIGNAGE: The Forest Service had attempted to keep the roads open to recreation users but due to frequent encounters between bike riders and construction and logging equipment, these roads will now be closed to all uses seven days a week.
- FS Roads 4610, 4601-300, and 4601-310 will now be closed to all uses due to frequent encounters between bike riders and construction and logging equipment. These closures will be in place seven days a week.
- FS Roads 320 and 322 are closed to vehicles but open to bikes and non-motorized uses.
- All roads will reopen to the public once road reconstruction is completed.
Your cooperation with these temporary closures will mean the contractors can work safely and more efficiently, ultimately resulting in the trails being reopened sooner.
Please use caution!
- Operators working on large equipment cutting and moving trees in the unit cannot see people walking or riding through the area and may not be able to prevent an accident. Mowing can cause debris to hurl over 500 feet from the equipment.
- Given these safety hazards, the Forest Service has implemented area closures, which remain in effect Monday – Friday.
- This is a great opportunity to check out some of our other nearby trails, including Horse Butte, Horse Ridge, Cline Buttes area (Maston, Juniper, Tumalo Canals – Between Tumalo and Eagle Crest), Peterson Ridge (Sisters), Radlands (Redmond), Lower 66 (Prineville) and Grey Butte/Skull Hollow (Smith Rock) We've compiled a general list of alternate trails HERE
What will it look like in a few months to a year?
- Over the next year, visitors will see the effects of tree felling and removal. There will be slash piles, orange-painted trees, and trail closures, all of which will be announced as soon as possible. Visitors will also see a forest with better views and longer sight distances. Check out our recent story, "Why is paint on the trees a good thing for mountain bikers?"
- In the long term, visitors can expect to see a more open forest, with bigger trees. More importantly, we all will experience a more resilient forest that offers a lower risk of extreme wildfire.
- Why is this restoration so important? Learn more about Restoring Our Forests.
The Euro Stewardship contract area is one portion of the 26,000-acre West Bend Project within the Deschutes National Forest and is located within the Collaborative Forest Landscape Restoration boundary.
The West Bend Project was developed in collaboration with our Steering Committee, the Deschutes National Forest, and a number of community stakeholders including COTA, BendTrails, City of Bend, and Deschutes County. We have worked together from the very beginning of designing, through planning, and now to implementation. The West Bend Project is designed to restore forest ecosystems, creating a diversity of plant and wildlife habitat, reduce the risk to our community from high severity wildfire, and provide economic and social benefits to our local community.