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Oregon 1 night backpacking trip

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Oregon 1 night backpacking trip

Postby tedryan10 » Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:47 pm

My wife and I are taking 10 days to drive around Oregon in late May and looking to get into the backcountry for a night. Something scenic and not too much mileage, but enough to get out there. most of our plans on the books so far are concentrated around Hood River so somewhere elsewhere such as Hood Nat'l Forest would be ideal.

Thanks
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Re: Oregon 1 night backpacking trip

Postby ExcitableBoy » Wed Mar 05, 2014 8:50 pm

Hood River is a great town to spend time in - lots of restaurants, brew pubs, art galleries and nice scenery. When I think of a nice back pack trip, I think of the Goat Rocks Wilderness across the Columbia River in Washington State. I'm not sure if that is too far afield for you, but it might be the ticket.
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Re: Oregon 1 night backpacking trip

Postby tedryan10 » Wed Mar 05, 2014 10:26 pm

I'm dying to find some wild mtn goats but that spot is a bit too far north for our plans. Thanks for the tip though.
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Re: Oregon 1 night backpacking trip

Postby Sunny Buns » Thu Mar 06, 2014 12:27 am

Mirror Lake is good; it's about 1.5 miles and maybe 700 feet gain - easy. On weekends it might be crowded. There are a few campsites by the lake. May get lucky and get good shots of the lake with Hood behind. You can keep going to the right another 2 miles or so past Mirror Lake to Tom Dick and Harry mountain as a day hike; or camp up there but you may need to carry your water. Nice views from there. Caution: the trailhead is 5 feet from a very busy and loud 4 lane highway and there is no barrier. Some day a texting doofus will run off the road and smash into the cars at that location so have EVERY SINGLE THING ready to go prior to arriving at the trailhead. Park vehicle, put trailhead pass in window, sun shades in windows, get out, put on packs and gear, lock it up and GET THE HELL AWAY from that trailhead. ;) Because of speeding cars (and monster trucks) going down-hill "away from" Government Camp it is dangerous to approach the trailhead from Government Camp - it is best to approach from the downhill side (going uphill toward Government Camp).

http://www.portlandhikersfieldguide.org/wiki/Mirror_Lake_Hike

http://www.oregonwild.org/about/hikes_events/explore-wild-oregon/northwest-oregon-hikes/oregon-wild-hikes-mirror-lake

Another good one would be Olallie Butte but that trail may not be maintained, is rough, and you may have to cross a LOT of blown down trees. Not sure if it's legal to camp up there because some of it is on an Indian reservation. I'd probably feel OK about camping in the woods prior to getting to the reservation but water may not be available. This is a more remote trip. Views from the top are some of the best anywhere. Get detailed driving directions from the internet and verify road conditions with the rangers prior to going. I've done it in a Civic, but if there's a big drift along the way, that might stop a Hummer. ;) Top of Olallie is over 7,000 feet - it is usually blowing hard and very cold on top.

http://www.portlandhikers.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=5689

Have fun!
Last edited by Sunny Buns on Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Oregon 1 night backpacking trip

Postby Sunny Buns » Thu Mar 06, 2014 1:02 am

Another one that's more of a workout but has nice views of Jefferson, Olallie Butte and maybe Hood is Bear Point. It's about 4 miles in, 3,000' gain. 6000' at the top. Should be some snow left for water at the top. Some years the cornices are awesome - don't fall thru those. This is another trip that's more remote so being self-sufficient is more important. It's not far from Breitenbush Hot Springs. If the top 1500' is snow-covered you can just go straight up and avoid the switchbacks which you will not be able to see anyway. Mark a few trees with colored ribbon as you go up and pay attention to the terrain if the trail is snow-covered.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QbfLNkIBhfY

http://alltrails.com/trail/us/oregon/bear-point

http://books.google.com/books?id=YIULH2Jk7yIC&pg=PA42&lpg=PA42&dq=bear+point,+oregon&source=bl&ots=laUy1M_m5d&sig=jpaJz2ofQtJUoCDKYnae-EZBelU&hl=en&sa=X&ei=58IXU-LCHIOAogSwrYCADQ&ved=0CCsQ6AEwAQ#v=onepage&q=bear%20point%2C%20oregon&f=false

Other options would be Pamelia Lake with possible trip to Grizzly Peak. Permit required for Pamelia Lake - obtain from Forest Service Ranger Station in Detroit, Oregon. Inquire about permits now if want to try this. A campout on Grizzly Peak during good weather would be awesome -the views of Jefferson are awesome. I don't remember great views from Pamelia Lake but it's an easy hike - 3 flatish miles.

http://www.summitpost.org/grizzly-peak/517839

http://www.daytrails.com/PameliaLake.html

http://www.everytrail.com/view_trip.php?trip_id=661106

:)
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Re: Oregon 1 night backpacking trip

Postby oldandslow » Thu Mar 06, 2014 11:17 pm

Camping in Western Oregon and backpacking in the northern Oregon Cascades in May can be problematic. There is the threat of rain and likely snow on the ground in higher elevations. A nice one night backpack not far from Hood River is Elk Meadow. Beautiful views of Mt. Hood. I have been there in May and there was not very much snow on the ground but it varies from year-to-year. There are a lot of books that offer many aalternatives.
For camping there are state parks and USFS campgrounds. I believe that each of these agencies publishes directories.
If you are going to be traveling to Eastern Oregon, you might want to consider hiking in the Elkhoen Mountains. Very scenic, not crowded and likely to be mostly snow free in May. The Elkhorn Crest National Scenic Trail treverses the area.
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Re: Oregon 1 night backpacking trip

Postby Bubba Suess » Tue Mar 25, 2014 2:32 pm

I would add the Strawberry Mountains to this list. The hike into Upper Strawberry Lake is fantastic with great views and a nice waterfall. Bonus: there are mountain goats in the Strawberrys, often on the cliffs above the lakes:
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