Riverside Wildfire and the Ghost town of Dodge

Welcome to John Carr Outdoors! 

Please visit the blog and follow. The follow button can be found at the bottom of the page. 

If you are seeing this on Facebook, click the link to visit the blog to see all of the photos.


September was a tough month in the Portland area. We faced a continuing onslaught of Covid-19 and unrest/violence in our downtown core. In addition, we suffered through a period of dense wildfire smoke.

In early October I took a drive southeast of Portland to Estacada on the Clackamas River to see if I could find the origins of some of the wildfire smoke. To my surprise, the huge Riverside Wildfire almost made it to Estacada.

Paved road to Dodge, an area exposed to the Riverside Wildfire

The road east of Estacada was closed just past a marina on the North Fork Reservoir due to wildfire damage.

Turning around, I ventured south of the Clackamas River to the ghost town of Dodge, established in 1852. Shock and amazement was my response. The fire had burned through the area. There was much evidence of total destruction.

A small church and at least one home was burnt to the ground. There was a lot of timber damage.

Driving home I reflected on the fact that the only reason the Riverside Wildfire stopped was due to an advantageous change in the weather.

All that’s left of a home in Dodge

Burnt timber near Dodge

Small church burnt to the ground in Dodge

Many closed roads due to wildfire damage


Categories: Portland OutingsTags:


  1. It is really heart-wrenching to drive around and see fire damage, espec. when you remember what was there and is now just a pile of ashes. And yes, shocking to see how the fires move indiscriminately, sometimes narrowly missing a structure, other times taking it down. I’m very sorry for the loss of the fires and structures there in your area. Also sorry there has been so much protesting and civil unrest in Portland. I hope that rain comes soon, quells the region and brings more restful moments. Hang in there, my friend.

    • Thanks for the kind comments Jet. In another week I’ll be in the Detroit, Oregon, area. There were many more people than Dodge, but they suffered equally as bad from the intense wildfires.

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: