Orleans is nestled into the northeastern corner of the county along Highway 96, approximately 15 miles past the town of Weitchpec. The community is surrounded by the Six Rivers National Forest, so all of the approximately 600 residents live within the Wildland-Urban Interface.
Orleans became a nationally recognized firewise community site in 2011 and has maintained its firewise status since then. The Orleans Firewise Board is assisted by the Orleans-Somes Bar Fire Safe Council (FSC) and the Orleans Volunteer Fire Department (VFD) in its efforts to improve fire preparedness in this community.
Orleans firewise days are often incorporated into other community events, such as The Old Timers Day Parade and Picnic, where the VFD’s fire trucks are on parade and fire-safe educational materials are distributed to landowners. The Klamath fire ecology symposium is another event where fire information is openly shared with community members through several days of lectures and workshops.
Orleans residents have also been leaders in the use of alternative fuels reduction methods, such as prescribed burning and animal grazing, along with the more conventional methods, like manual and mechanical vegetation removal.