Metolius River/Black Butte's Lower Loop

August 18-19, 2007

When a low pressure system was forecast to move into the NW and rain Saturday night, I changed the campout location from Golden Lake at 6600' elevation to a lower carcamp at Riverside Campground between the Head of the Metolius River and Camp Sherman. After pitching camp, we (Bob “nonmember” Howarth and I, Jim Fritz,) viewed the “Head” (source), then drove to Camp Sherman where the trail begins across the street from the only store. We hiked in perfect weather far beyond the second road bridge where the trail wanders from the ever-steepening bank into a rhody and manzanita woods far from the filtered, multi-dimpled river. Back to our tents at 7:00, we dined as the high front quietly greyed the sky. It rained ½" as we slept.

After breakfast and breaking camp, it drizzled briefly as we drove to Black Butte and found the gravel road had been washboarded by the rain. The intense car vibrations stopped as we parked where the Lower Loop Trail crosses the road. We hiked to the south and returned to Eugene on the McKenzie Highway, stopping at Belknap Springs for a salmonburger.

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