Chucksney Mountain

July 30, 2005

Dan Christensen, Becky Lipton, Danny Baihuber and Allan Coons (leader) met at SEHS parking lot at 7:50 a.m. and left for Chucksney Mtn. at 8:00. All are Obsidians. The sky was clear and promised to be to by mid-afternoon, and it was. We stopped at Westfir on the way and turned north on Aufterheide Scenic Drive. The divide between the Willamette and the McKenzie drainages is about 75 miles from Eugene whether one goes up Hwy. 58 and turns north or up Hwy. 126 and turns south. We arrived at 10:00. This hike can be a loop hike, and that is what we did, going counter-clockwise. (It's 4.75 miles to the ridge top where we had lunch and 5.50 miles back to the trail head.) The hike climbs through old growth forests, gaining about 2000 feet, with a few ups and downs. The ridge top affords wonderful views of the Three Sisters, Bachelor, Broken Top and Mt. Washington. There are some meadows on the est side of the ridge which earlier in the season would have had wildflowers and butterflies. There were hardly any this year. After lunch the trail goes through meadows on the west-facing ridge which offers views of the ridges and valleys of the Old Cascades. Eventually the trail works its way down the Box Canyon watershed. Near the end of the hike, the trail crosses the creek where we soaked our feet for a few minutes in the cool air on the banks of the stream. In fact, we had a nice cooling mountain breeze for most of the hike, particularly during the afternoon. We got back to the vehicle around 4:00 p.m. We completed the scenic drive continuing north on Aufderheide Drive and drove back about 75 miles from the trail head to the parking lot.

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