Waldo Mountain-Salmon Lakes Loop

September 11, 2005

The day before our trip was the first significantly cold day and rain of the fall season. In the spring when I scheduled this trip I tried to pick a date after the mosquitoes and before the snow. I lucked out on one of the two. We left Eugene with clearing skies and with the temperature expected to be in the mid 50s in the mountains. As we hiked up the train to Waldo Mountain we passed two bow hunters hunting for elk. They said they had heard deer, but had not heard or seen any elk. The storm from the previous day made the brush wet and left a light covering of snow on the ground. As we lunched in the sun at the lookout, which is boarded up but appears to be in usable condition, the clouds shrouded the highest summits but the views were still rewarding with fresh snow on the peaks. We descended the east ridge of Waldo Mountain and took a side trip past Elbow Lake to the Waldo Lake shoreline. From the shore we basked in the sun with views of The Twins and Maiden Peak across the lake. We headed back to the car through Waldo Meadows. The 2.5 miles listed in Sullivan’s book from the Salmon Lakes trail to the trailhead, hikes much faster than other 2.5 mile trails. On the way home we stopped at the Trail Head café in Oakridge for a cup of warm tea. The hikers included guest Wendy Mitchell (her third Obsidian hike), and members Dick Hildreth, Daphne James, Nola Nelson, and leader Craig Renkert.

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