A Long, Rainy Hike in the Coastal Mountains


I enjoy hiking in the Coastal Mountains. It is verdant and beautiful country.

On the first day of spring I drove almost to the crest of the Coastal Range, parking at the Gales Creek Forest Camp.

Several years ago the Gales Creek Trail was repaired and reopened. But, keeping the trail open is an endless task. The area continues to suffer many washouts and blowdowns.

Most of the trail is at or near the bottom of the deep Gales Creek Canyon. After the first six miles, the next mile is fairly steep as it climbs out of the headbasin to the summit at Bell Camp Road.

There were many trilliums in bloom along the trail, and a few wood sorrel, toothworts and stream violets. On the downside, I endured 6 1/2 hours of non-stop rain.

Because of the immense amount of rainfall this winter, there were many streams to ford. At several of the locations there were eye-catching waterfalls to see.

After taking a break at Bell Camp Road, it was time to return to the trailhead.

A very wet, but superb way to spend a day.

A copse of Red Alder surrounding the trail

A copse of Red Alder surrounding the trail

Wood Sorrel with its characteristic shamrock-shaped leaf

Wood Sorrel with its characteristic shamrock-shaped leaf

One of many waterfalls along the trail

One of many waterfalls along the trail

Springboard slot on stump of a Douglas Fir logged a good century ago

Springboard slot on stump of a Douglas Fir logged a good century ago

Remains of a recently killed Blacktail Deer (probably a Cougar)

Remains of a recently killed Blacktail Deer (probably a Cougar)

New signpost about one mile from trailhead

New signpost about one mile from trailhead

Classic Rain Forest scene along the trail

Classic Rain Forest scene along the trail (another springboard slot)

Pleasant stretch of the lower trail

Pleasant stretch of the lower trail (sword ferns and Red Alders line the trail)

Small waterfall along the trail

Small waterfall along the trail

Trillium

Trillium

A wispy waterfall along the trail

A three-stage, wispy waterfall along the trail

Red Alder bark

Red Alder bark

 

Categories: Oregon Coastal Mountain HikingTags: , , , ,

4 comments

  1. Great shots John.

    Like

  2. To me, a rainy day on the west side of the mountains is pure bliss. Thank you for sharing your great eye and skill. Sandy Covey

    Like

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