The U.S. Forest Service says prescribed burning season has arrived on Mt. Hood National Forest. If conditions are favorable, Barlow Ranger District firefighters will ignite a 400-acre prescribed fire west of Wamic over the next few weeks, depending on weather conditions. Fire personnel may start ignitions as early as May 6 on the South Rock prescribed fire unit. The burn unit is located about three miles southwest of Pine Hollow and five miles west of Wamic. Fire personnel are planning to burn up to 400 acres over three days. Weather forecasts will be assessed daily to determine whether conditions are favorable for burning. Firefighters will remain on site for several days and continue patrols until the prescribed fire is declared out. The South Rock prescribed fire is within the footprint of the Central Wasco County All Lands Joint Chief Project, intended to improve landscape resilience to disease and fire, as well as improve Oregon white oak habitat and the plants and wildlife species that depend on it. The Forest Service says prescribed burns are a critical tool for reducing hazardous fuels on the landscape, minimizing the spread of disease and pest insects, and favoring fire-adapted plant species.