Mount June is the tallest peak in the undesignated Hardesty Mountain wilderness area about 20-25 miles east/southeast of Eugene, Oregon and offers an easy trail to a rocky-topped summit with views from Mt. Hood to Diamond Peak. The summit is the site of a former fire lookout. In the 1920's, there was a 50 foot pole platform there which was then replaced with a wooden tower and cabin quarters. Long since abandoned and detroyed, the only thing left are some foundation pillars and a couple of USGS markers.
There is an easy trail of just over a mile and 900 feet elevation gain to the summit but this one also is connected to nearby Hardesty Mountain and many other trails that would allow multiple ways to reach the summit including an 18 mile round-tripper with over 4000 feet of elevation gain for those traiing for much bigger things. The easy trail can also be combined with the Sawtooth Trail to bag Hardesty and get in almost 10 miles with 2100 feet of elevation gain.
Views of other nearby Old Cascades peaks include Fairview Peak, Bohemia Mountain and the rocky pillar, Sawtooth Rock (which is on the connecting trail to Hardesty Mountain). And even though this peak is fairly close to one of Oregon's larger towns, be on the lookout for large wildlife including deer and black bear (who like to browse in the meadows).
Enjoy these areas while you can. The Clinton Administration passed the Roadless Area Conservation Rule to protect this and 2 million other acres in Oregon but the Bush Administration repealed that putting this area at risk. This is not intended to be a political statement, I could care less about either of them, just trying to prompt you to enjoy these areas before loggers or suburbs get them.
Getting ThereTake I-5 south of Eugene, OR to Oakridge Exit 188A. Then follow Highway 58 east for 11.2 miles to Dexter Dam and turn right at the sign for Lost Creek. Go 3.5 miles to Eagles Crest Road and turn left over a small bridge. Take Eagles Crest Road 7.6 miles toa fork and veer left following the brown hikers sign. This is Road 20-1-14 and you will take this 2.6 miles to where the pavement ends and continue on on this road another 3.5 miles of gravel. You will then come to a small triangle of roads on the left. Take either left, the first or second one, they meet up in a few short yards. This is Road 1721 and you are only on this for .1 miles to Road 941 on the left. This road is somewhat steep and rutted and may not be the best for low-clearance cars. Take this road .4 miles to the trailhead sign on the right.
Red TapeNo fees or permits required! Yay!
CampingThis area is within the Laying Creek Municipal Watershed and as such, overnight camping is not allowed. You can find many campgrounds back on Highway 58 if needed but this is such a short hike, it really is a day use area.
Cottage Grove Ranger District