OverviewStein Butte , Collings Mountain , and
Red Buttes , Baldy Peak is located in the Siskiyou Mountains and in the Rogue River Siskiyou National Forest . There was a forest fire in the area in 2006, however, the damage was minimal and it is still a great hiking area.
The Siskiyou Mountains are unusual because they run east and west to form a bridge connecting the Coast Range and the Cascade Mountains. This connection allows plant species from these different regions to meet and intermix. This area seems to have lots of ticks and they find me whenever I am in the area. Take precautions. If you take an approprate hiking partner, you can entertain each other looking in all the hidden areas where ticks like to hide.
Getting ThereTo find the trailhead from Interstate 5 in Medford take either the North or South exit from I-5 and follow the signs to Jacksonville and Hwy 238. Jacksonville is a quaint historical town located about 6 miles west of Medford. The whole town of Jacksonville is on the National Historic Register because of its well preserved buildings from the 1850’s when gold was discovered nearby. After driving through the middle of Jacksonville continue on Hwy 238 towards Grants Pass. About 8.6 miles from Jacksonville is the little settlement of Ruch. Applegate Road is the major intersection here. Turn left or south onto Applegate Road and head towards Applegate Lake.
The trailhead is 12.1 miles from Ruch. On the way you will pass the Star Ranger Station and McKee Bridge. McKee Bridge is a little settlement that is famous for its covered bridge across the Applegate River. The trail is adjacent to the road on the left or east side of the road. The trail has been numbered by the forest service as number 919. There is not much parking at the trailhead, you have to park along the road. Be careful that you don’t get too far off the pavement, otherwise you will easily slide down into the ditch. The trailhead elevation is about 1,790ft.
See the Route Description for info on the trail and finding the summit of Baldy Peak.
Red TapeNo permits required unless you want a campfire. The infamous Northwest Forest Pass needed for parking at most trailheads is no longer required at any trailhead in the Rogue River or Siskiyou National Forests.
Ranger Station Info
Applegate Ranger District
Erin Connelly, District Ranger
6941 Upper Applegate Road
Jacksonville, Oregon 97530-9314
Voice: (541) 899-3800 FAX: (541) 899-3888
CampingThere are lots of camping areas within a few miles of the trailhead, including areas around Applegate Lake. Some of these campgrounds are closed in the winter, so call ahead to find out about access.
There really is no backpack camping available along the trail until you get to elevation 4,080 just before the summit. You could make a bivy site once you get up to the summit if you wish.
Follow these links for more camping information.
Forest Service Camping Info
When to ClimbThis mountain is accessible year round.
Winter snow rarely accumulates to more than 6 inches in the winter.
Summer hiking could be quite hot. The mountain is not tall enough to get above the 100 degree plus temperatures in the valley. This would be a good morning hike and then cool off in the lake in the afternoon.
Other trails in the area
Mountain ConditionsThis mountain is accessible in the winter and that is the primary reason that I keep coming back and climbing it. I have climbed it a couple of times after snow storms, but the snow rarely accumulates to more than 6 inches in the winter.
For current weather conditions in Medford follow this link