Dog Creek (Umpqua) Indian Caves

May 11, 1996

This year an even dozen of us successfully made the trip to the Dog Creek Indian Caves near Steamboat on the North Umpqua River. This year the spur road leading to the trailhead was closed because of fallen trees whereas it was closed because of nesting falcons last year. This meant I had to take the longer route starting at the Ragged Ridge Road and including a total of a mile cross-country hiking over the abandoned Bradley Ridge Trail. This portion was made more difficult by the large amount of wind throw from last December’s storm. Despite these hurdles, our hearty band literally took it in stride. We were rewarded by finding the kalmiopsis in the middle of its life cycle, and the native American pictographs were as intriguing as usual. Since the day was clear and mild, the view from the rock’s crest was spectacular. We also enjoyed the calypso orchids along the trail and the magnificence of the sugar pines. Returning back up the steep hills to the road, many of us were glad that the temperature wasn’t any warmer than it was! A special thanks to Ben Elkus for scouting out the trail conditions for me. Thinks also to Max Brown, Nioma John and Lloyd Plaisted for driving their cars. Others in this amiable crew were Barbara Bruns, Cliff Davidson, Bev Halter, Sandra Larsen, Bob Lemon, Anne McLucas and Ivan Vandeberg. — Leader, Anne Montgomery.

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