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Image of the Forest Service  Smokejumper logo. National Program

The smokejumper base at Redmond is one of several bases around the country in the national program. The 35 jumpers at the Redmond Air Center are part of the larger corps, which currently includes over 400 jumpers. In this program, a national dispatch system coordinates smokejumpers and aircraft, dispatching them to areas with high fire activity. With their fleet of fixed-wing aircraft, jumpers are a highly mobile and flexible firefighting resource.

Jumpers from surrounding areas can quickly reinforce or "boost" the numbers in other areas as needed, usually within 24 hours. With approval from coordination centers, temporary smokejumper operations or "spike bases" which require very little logistical support from the ordering unit can be established quickly. Traditionally, a spike base has been located in La Grande, Oregon, the site of a former smokejumper base. Such prepositioning of smokejumper forces can further improve response times to fires. Almost any airport can be "spiked," bringing a valuable resource to fire managers when the need arises.

For more information e-mail the Redmond Smokejumpers.