OverviewCollings Mountain is located in the extreme southwest corner of Jackson County, Oregon in the Rogue River National Forest near the Applegate Ranger District. The Oregon/California border is only 3 miles directly south of the summit. Collings Mountain is located in the Siskiyou Mountains and is adjacent to the western edge of Applegate Lake. Views from the hiking trails leading to Collings Mountain include the Red Buttes Wilderness , Grayback Mountain , Wagner Butte , Stein Butte , the Siskiyou Mountains , and Applegate Lake
Collings Mountain Trailheads are adjacent to Applegate Road and Applegate Lake and are popular hiking destinations for area residents. The north Collings Mountain Trailhead is also the access point to see the world famous Bigfoot Trap . Just south of Collings Mountain is a taller ridge that includes the Red Buttes Wilderness area and the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT). Collings Mountain is a good place to get some winter conditioning because it isn’t high enough to be buried in snow.
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.
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.
Applegate Lake is 15 miles along Applegate Road and the Applegate River. 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. Once you get to the Applegate Dam stay to the right and follow the road down the west side of the lake to virtual milepost 15.8 for the north end of Collings Mountain Trail or continue on to virtual milepost 18.5 for the south end of the Collings Mountain Trail. The trail is signed at both ends. The trail has been numbered by the forest service as number 943.
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
There really is no backpack camping available along the trail. You could make a bivy site once you get up to the ridge line or near 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