Smith Ridge

October 2, 1993

Smith Ridge is a unique area in the Cascade Mountains near Clear Lake. The ridge is actually a plateau that rises to 3500 feet elevation. On top are six large, wooded areas. The ridge is prime grazing area for herds of elk and deer. A number of tall Douglas-firs display osprey nests and there are numerous beaver dams in the streams. On a warm, sunny day nine of us bushwhacked several miles in a loop that included forested areas as well as meadow. Chery Friesen, the wildlife biologist at McKenzie Ranger Station, served as our naturalist guide. We visited a beaver lodge and meadows which were criss-crossed with channels excavated by beaver. Deer and elk tracks were everywhere. After lunch we drove to several salmon spawning areas. At Lost Creek we balanced ourselves on a log jutting into the stream and watched two large salmon. The female was excavating in the streambed in preparation for spawning. We had an enjoyable afternoon. Our group included Mari Baldwin, Charlie Berg, Bob Foster, Ray Jensen, Chuck Mitchell, Anne Montgomery, Carol Stern, Chery Friesen and Dave Predeek (leader).

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