September 25, 2004
Some mist was falling early on our drive but we soon had sunshine. It was a beautiful day for our early fall hike to this area west-northwest of Mt. Jefferson. Making a pit stop at Sahalie Falls, I was surprised to meet up with a climbing buddy from more than 30 years ago, Bill Ross, of Bend. He and his family were on their way to a Duck game.
On our hike in, we found the Huckleberries lining the trail were long gone. We ate lunch where the lookout stood, by the stump that is still there. I had carried a watermelon up to that lookout when a friend was there more than 50 years ago. I had also led a 16 mile round trip hike there from our 1960 summer camp at Jeff Park.
After lunch we followed the “trail” down to the Boca Cave, which is large enough to place a fair size home in it, and still have room left over. At times I have seen evidence of animals having taken refuge there in a storm. In earlier years there was no trail down to the cave, but in later years a semblance of a trail has developed, which makes it much easier to reach the cave. While not a “good trail”, it certainly beats trying to reach the cave without a trail at all.
From inside the cave, one can climb up the slope to where the mountain (Jefferson) can be neatly framed by the entrance to the cave. From that spot, one has a superb view of Jeff, and with fresh snow on it, it is beautiful.
On this hike were Daniel Pearson, Sandy Smeltzer and Dale Steinhauer, all non-members, and Norm Benton, an Obsidian and trip leader. Daniel is 11 years of age, and like the other two, he was on his first Obsidian hike. Sandy is a young woman originally from Pennsylvania, while Dale is my nephew, and a archivist (civilian) with the army at Leavenworth Kansas. Nearly 50 years ago he and his older brother started hiking and climbing with me. It had been many years since we had done a hike together.
We returned to Eugene at 5:50 p.m. after a satisfying hike in the mountains.