Fish Creek Mountain: only for Adventurers


It’s always fun to return to a hike done many years ago, especially if it no longer follows a well-maintained trail.

The original trail began near the end of a Forest Service road. But, close to twenty years ago the road was closed and is currently so overgrown it is unrecognizable as having ever been passable.

The current trail to 5,100-foot Fish Creek Mountain begins at an unmarked trailhead off of a rough dirt road southeast of Estacada, Oregon.

Now one gets the challenge of hiking a hard-to-follow access trail built by volunteers. The trail is very steep in places.

Another change from 20 years ago is the old fire lookout site on the mountain’s summit is overgrown with noble firs and mountain hemlocks standing well over my head. Still, there continues to be views extending to Mt. Jefferson and Mt. Hood.

An extra treat of the outing was a 500-foot descent below the summit on another rough trail to a very pretty cirque lake (High Lake) formed by a receding glacier long ago.

What could be a better outing on an early May day?

High Lake

High Lake

Avalanche Lily

Avalanche Lily

Englemann Spruce cones

Englemann Spruce cones

Cat's-ear Lily

Cat’s-ear Lily

Summit of Fish Creek Mountain (remains of a long-removed fire lookout)

Summit of Fish Creek Mountain (remains of a long-removed fire lookout)

Western Mountain Ash

Sitka Mountain Ash

Swallowtail Butterfly on a Larkspur

Swallowtail Butterfly on a Larkspur

Western Solomon Plume (wild Lily)

Western Solomon Plume (wild Lily)

Penstemon (Cardwell's?)

Penstemon (Cardwell’s?)

Rock Penstmon

Rock Penstmon

Mt. Jefferson with fresh snow

Mt. Jefferson with fresh snow

Trail leading through a wildflower meadow

Trail leading through a wildflower meadow

Prairie Star

Prairie Star

?

Waterleaf

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Oregon Cascades HikesTags: , , , ,

4 comments

  1. Truly stunning photos, John. And a wonderful hike. Detail and clarity in each photo. My favorite one is the spruce tree and pine cones, it looks like it’s from another planet.

    Like

  2. Just beautiful, John. When someone tells you to “get lost”, I’m so glad you take them literally. 🙂 another great post!
    Sandy

    Like

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