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Spring and summer 2004 trail tips from the USFS Bend - Ft. Rock District
Summer 2002 Winter 2002 - 2003 Summer 2003 Winter 2003 - 2004 Summer 2004 Winter 2004 - 2005
Trail changes are in the wind! 10.06.04
The Fall season trails are on the dry and dusty
side at this time but that may change towards the end of the week as head into a
cooling trend with a chance of showers. That may mean some minor snow fall at
the higher elevations. As usual, watch the weather closely this time of year and
Just a couple of quick local trails related activities that are coming up this Saturday:
Saturday, October 9 from 10am-4pm is the 2004 Active Winter Outdoor Expo. This celebrates the best of non-motorized wintertime health, fitness, safety and environmental education and takes place at the Mazama Gym Complex at Central Oregon Community Complex.
Along with dozens of national and regional vendors and organizations representing a variety of winter outdoor activities, there will be several Educational/Informational Presentations. For more information on this event see: http://www.xcoregon.org/
Here's another local trails related opportunity just posted at www.cotamtb.org by COTA Staff. This is from the local mt. bike organization which is heavily involved in mt. bike trail maintenance in cooperation with the Deschutes National Forest. For more info: www.cotamtb.org
Reminder--COTA Saturday Biketoberfest: Fall trailwork season is underway. This Saturday and every Saturday throughout the fall we'll be meeting at DiLusso's on Galveston at 9 and heading out to the trails. Bring: Sturdy shoes, gloves, eye protection, snacks, water and your bike as we often ride a short distance to the work area. Tools will be provided. There is a burger and beer fest at about 3PM for those who have helped with the trails.
Over the coming weeks, I will be sending out increasing information on the upcoming winter trails program, changes and events. And once again, Fall is a transition period for us as we begin the "winterizing" of our summer trails program and startup of the winter trails.
Have a safe week!
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Fall is officially here! 09.27.04
Fall is officially here and our recent early
season snowfall has mostly melted off with temperatures reaching into the
seventies and eighties over the past few days. Fall is officially here
Some minor snow will likely be encountered near the summit of the volcanoes, mainly South Sister. This may present some added challenge for fall climbers, as the snow may be hard and crusty in the morning hours and during colder temperatures. Mid and lower elevation trails have dried out considerably with some becoming soft with dusty conditions. Dry and warm conditions with some cooling is expected for the immediate future and in most cases, it is a great time of year to be out on the trails.
A note of interest and safety here for all trail users, hunters and non-hunters alike: The bulk of the deer and elk hunting seasons is upon us and it's a time to take a little extra caution to the local woods and trails; the hunters will be out in force. During hunting season, you can expect to encounter more people on the roads, on trails and off trail. During this season, it is a good idea to wear bright color clothing (orange or red) to make you more visible to others. For hunters, be aware that many of the trails on the Deschutes National Forest are high use with hikers, bikers and runners. Get familiar with where you may encounter a trail when hunting off trail and keep this in mind when taking aim. If possible, avoid hunting in the high use areas especially during weekends.
For non-hunters, be aware that most of the Deschutes National Forest, including the Three Sisters Wilderness is open to hunting during specific hunting seasons. Those seasons and areas of the Bend/Fort Rock Ranger District are: Archery season District Wide: August 28 - September 26, Deer Rifle Season District Wide: October 2 - October 13, High Cascade Bull Elk Season: Portion of District West of Highway 97: October 16 - October 22, Elk Season. Portion of District East of Highway 97: 1st period Oct. 27 - Oct. 31 2nd Period Nov. 6 - 14.
There is a General Western Oregon Deer Season that the hunt unit begins on the west side of the Pacific Crest Trail. Hunters may access the unit via Deschutes National Forest hiking trails: Oct. 2 - Oct. 15 and Oct. 23 -Nov. 5. See out further hunting season information in the Oregon hunting synopsis.
Have a great and safe fall week!
-- Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Winter volunteer stuff! 09.20.04
I'm sending this special request out for
volunteer assistance on winter shelter restoration projects. We have some
special shelter restoration funding of which I have purchased materials for log
and shake treatment and chinking for weather proofing between the logs of some
of our un-chinked shelters. Without getting into a lot of detail the following
shelters are scheduled for treatment over the next month: Six Mile, Sheridan,
AC/DC, Swede Ridge, and Shooting Star. These are log shelters that have not been
chinked nor ever treated with wood preservative. If there is wood treatment left
over, we will do some treatment on some of the post and shake shelters i.e.,
Meissner and Swampy. We also have shakes for doing repairs on those shelters in
need of roof repairs i.e.. Meissner, AC/DC, Kwohl, and Swampy.
This Thursday I will working on cleaning of the exteriors of Six Mile, Sheridan, Swede Ridge and Shooting Star; using a fire engine with high pressure water to knock the loose material and dirt off. Could use people to help with that process who would scrub the difficult areas. Then sometime in the near future after the shelters have dried we will need to chink those in need and then apply the wood treatment; more volunteers will be needed for those steps. So if you're interested in helping out with these projects, please contact me directly and we'll get you on the shelter restoration schedule.
Of course beyond these special shelter projects there are the normal winter trail preparation projects including shelter wood stocking, trail brushing/clearing, sign repairs. etc. I will doing field surveys over the next week looking at winter trail priorities; I will then get back with details so the winter club project coordinators can plug these into the weekend trail project parties.
A last note, any crystal ball readings on what this winter holds for us? Feels like we have been on an early fall approach for the past few weeks; could that mean an early winter?
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Webmeister's Note: This is a great opportunity
to volunteer with like minded folks. Call Chris Sabo at Bend/Fort Rock Ranger
District of the Deschutes National Forest, 541-383-4795 or email
Plan for cold weather on your Fall adventures! 09.13.04
Early Fall and Winter?
Indian summer or Alaskan winter? Looking at this week’s weather forecast and you would think we are already into October. Rain and snow is the forecast for the Three Sisters over the next several days with snow level dipping down to 5500 ft. late into the week and weekend. Small craft warnings out on the Coast? Try the Noaa website at the below site for further weather details in the Three Sisters area.
What this dictates for the trails over the next few days is plan on rain at the lower elevations and snow at the higher elevations. Maybe not quite enough snow to dig out the skis, snowshoes and snowmobiles but enough to plan on extra cloths and raingear. Long range weather is calling for a cooler Fall with a chance of early winter conditions. This could mean trails and some roads becoming blocked by snow earlier than normal. It’s this time of year with very changeable weather conditions that trail users can get into precarious situations when not fully prepared for changing weather.
At present most trails are in good conditions although several will be on the damp to wet side over the next several days. Snow showers were reported to be falling in the Green Lakes area (6,500’) over the past weekend.
As the weather begins its transition from summer to fall and into winter so to are our trail crews planning for the seasonal changes. Over the coming weeks, crews will be improving trail drainage to ready them for heavy runoff as well as taking down summer information boards, Wilderness Permit stations, miscellaneous signing prone to winter damage, etc. At the same time crews of volunteers will be repairing and installing winter related signs and information boards along with performing maintenance on and stocking firewood in winter warming shelters. There’s also winter trails that need brushing and clearing before the winter snows make such duties difficult. If you are interested in volunteering in this seasonal trails transition from summer to winter trails contact our District Volunteer Coordinator, Todd Cardin at: (541) 383-4794 for more information.
During this transition in seasons, we tend to see an increased level of resource impacts due to illegal off road vehicle use. This especially occurs at elevations of early season snow. Irresponsible operators of highway vehicles, ATVs and even early season snowmobile users venturing off road onto meadows, slopes and trails with their vehicles when such activities are illegal either anytime or without sufficient snow depth. Areas especially sensitive to these activities include high alpine sites and riparian areas.
A reminder for snowmobilers wanting to get an
early season start, please remember that snowmobiling is NOT permitted in those
areas where snowmobiling is legal in the winter UNTIL THERE IS SUFFICIENT SNOW
TO PREVENT IMPACTS TO SOILS OR VEGETATION.
Common sense indicates that if you’re turning up soil, exposing snow covered vegetation, bumping over numerous logs and rocks, etc. the snow is not deep nor dense enough to ride on. What this means is that the first snows that are unconsolidated and without a solid base may not be deep enough even at 1-2 feet if you’re sinking in that 1-2 feet in powder snow. Some of the higher powered snowmobiles during rapid acceleration may require more than 3 ft. of snow if it’s soft, fluffy snow without a solid base. Please, don’t set a bad example; be patient and wait until the snow is sufficiently deep and dense enough to protect soils and vegetation throughout the legal riding area.
For those who witness illegal off road vehicle use we urge you to contact law enforcement authorities by calling (541) 388-0170 with the location and vehicle and person descriptions if possible.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Labor Day Weekend and the last Hurrah! 08.31.04
The short answer to this week’s question of
what will the crowds be like this holiday weekend: We will see; it all depends
on the weather. Nice weather, plan on healthy crowds in the popular
hangouts. Not so nice weather and you could almost have some of these sites to
yourself. Present weekend forecast calls for cooler temperatures with cloudy
skies and chance of rain showers.
The more popular trail areas on the Bend/Fort Rock Ranger District include: Deschutes River, Tumalo Falls, Tumalo Mt., Todd Lake, Broken Top, Green Lakes, Moraine Lake, South Sister and a few trails in the Newberry Crater area.
Less popular trail areas include: Wickiup Plains to the southern Wilderness trails, Lava to Edison Trail, Metolius/Windigo Trail, Swampy Lakes Trails, Lemish Lake to Charlton Lake trails area, Cultus Lake to Little Cultus Lake, higher elevation trails in the Newberry Crater area and Swamp Wells trails. Even some of the bike trails in the Phils Trailhead area do a good job of absorbing the moderate to high use. So if you’re seeking a bit more trail solitude this weekend, try these lower use sites and you might be surprised at how easy it really is to get away from the maddening crowds.
With last week’s moderate to heavy rainfall, all trails have firmed up and are dust free for the most part. The mosquitoes for the most part seemed to have packed their bags and headed south or are at least so few and far enough between to be of minor nuisance.
Have a safe and enjoyable weekend!
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Trail Report Summary 08.16.04
Overall, trail and Wilderness conditions are
looking pretty good with nearly every mile of Bend/Fort Rock summer trail
reported to have been cleared. The latest trail clearings include: remainder
of the Pacific Crest Trail (Bend District section), Lemish Lake/Clover Meadow
loop and Bridge Creek (hiker only in the Bend Municipal Watershed). We have had
a few reports of isolated trees falling across trails since clearing began this
spring. In most cases, unless they pose a serious safety problem these new blow
downs won’t likely be cleared until next year.
Recent thunderstorms have caused some safety concerns for trail users and firefighters alike. For unprepared trail users, unexpected thunderstorms can be a direct lightning hazard but also pose the danger of hypothermia. I covered these safety concerns in detail in a recent report and will only send this out as a reminder. As dozens of climbers in the South Sister, Moraine Lake, and Green Lakes area found out last weekend, these storms can move in rapidly, giving you no time to reach a safe area. Reports by hikers on the South Sister Summit and along its access trail reported lightning strikes as close as 30 ft. with heavy hail and rain. Dozens of fire starts from lightning have been reported and extinguished and dozens more will likely pop up over the coming week. Just a heads up to trail users to always check the weather forecast before venturing out and go prepared.
Mosquitoes seem to be backing off in most areas while in other locales they appear to be holding their numbers.
As we continue towards the Labor Day Weekend, remember we are in peak summer use period for most trails and backcountry areas. Depending on the trail and day, you may encounter moderate to heavy use by hikers, runners, bikers and horse users. Remember to finely hone your trail manners, to allow everyone to have a good trail experience.
A few trail safety and courtesy tips include:
1. Bikers yield to hikers and stock users. Always bike under control and at a safe speed adjusted for the type of trail, terrain, and potential for other user contacts. Avoid hard braking as skidding is particularly damaging to trails. Be sure to give advanced warning when approaching other trail users from behind. Remember, Wilderness is closed to all mechanized forms of travel including bikes.
2. Hikers step to the side (preferably the downhill side) of the trail to allow for safe passing by stock users.
3. Stock users avoid running stock as it causes increased trail wear and can be a safety hazard for other trail users. Also, please remove horse waste from trails.
4. Trail users with dogs, leash your pet on the leash required trails along the Deschutes River Corridor and high use Wilderness areas; or if you do not have adequate control of your dog. Many trail user conflicts occur during this heavy use period because of dog behavior.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Trail Report Summary! 08.10.04
Weather this week is looking favorable for
trail and Wilderness activities and the use numbers are looking typical for the
high use season.
Typical busy trails and backcountry areas for August include:
South Sister, Green Lakes, Moraine Lake, Todd Lake, Sparks Lake, Deschutes River and Trails, Tumalo Falls and Tumalo Trail system, and Broken Top. An example of heavy use: it’s not uncommon to find 150-200 people climbing to the summit of South Sister on a Saturday in August or 70-80 people camped in the Moraine Lake area on a Friday or Saturday night in August. Green Lakes too is a very busy area with counts of over 200 people hiking and horseback riding in for a single weekend day. Be prepared to encounter many other trail users in these high use areas or try to plan your outing during a weekday or better yet, during the off season.
Trail conditions on most Bend/Fort Rock Ranger District trails are looking mostly good.
The 9 miles of Pacific Crest Trail just north of Irish/Taylor Lakes should be fully cleared within the next week. Two miles remain to be cleared at this time. All remaining sections of PCT on the District have been cleared. It has been reported that with the recent thunderstorm activity, many areas were hit with strong winds causing some new blowdown across trails. Crews will try to clear this new blowdown on the more popular trails but the less popular trails with new blowdown may have to wait until next year.
The recent cold spell and isolated heavy rain seemed to cut back the mosquito populations to manageable levels. Presently, most trails and backcountry areas are reporting low mosquito counts. Though cold spells are good for knocking back the mosquitoes, they can be life threatening to the unprepared. There were several reports to backcountry Wilderness Rangers of cold hikers in the South Sister, Moraine Lake, and Green Lakes areas late last week as temperatures dipped into the mid-twenties at one point. Several trail users reported symptoms of hypothermia as the wind chill factor fell to single digits and possibly below on South Sister. Just a reminder to go prepared!
Everyday Trail and Backcountry Etiquette to consider!
During this peak use period comes the need to practice more patience and trail etiquette whether hiking, biking or horse riding. Basic trail etiquette, use restrictions and safety tips on multi-use trails includes:
1. Bikers yield to hikers and horse riders; also sound a warning in advance when approaching others from behind. Always ride under control and avoid hard braking to avoid user conflicts, accidents, and trail erosion.
2. Hikers yield to horse and other stock users, preferably on the downhill side of trail if safe.
3. Horse users, please remove animal waste from trails, along water sources, trailheads and other areas of high use. Prevent your dog from chasing wildlife, stock animals, other dogs and people by maintaining control of your dog at all times (preferably with a leash if not under good voice control). All developed recreation areas including trailheads require dogs be leashed at all times. Maintain visual contact with your dog at all times and clean up after your pet by removing waste from trails, campsites, water sources, trailheads and anywhere dog waste may cause user conflicts or sanitation concerns. Be a responsible pet owner and help to avoid the need to impose additional dog restrictions on area trails.
Local area dog restrictions include:
July 1 – October 1 dogs are required to be on leash at all times when on the trails and in the lake areas from Todd Lake to Broken Top, South Sister, Green and Moraine Lakes, and to Devils Lake and Green Lakes Trailheads.
Wilderness dog leash map:
May 1-October 1 dogs are required to be on a leash at all times when in the Deschutes River Corridor from Meadow Picnic area upstream to Benham East.
Deschutes River Corridor dog leash map:
During these periods, ALL dogs must remain on leash or owners risk receiving a $200 citation. Due to the heavy concentration of use on these trails and in these areas, conflicts between dogs and people, stock, and wildlife have created safety issues. Please help us eliminate these safety related conflicts and maintain your pet on a leash. For those choosing not to leash your dog, you do have the option of hiking and horse riding on the many miles of trails not included in these special restriction areas. We do however ask that you maintain either voice or physical control of your dog, especially in the presence of other trail users and wildlife.
Avoid cutting switchbacks and encourage others to do the same:
Stay on main trails in high use alpine areas and other areas of high use with fragile soils and vegetation. Hike, bike, and horse ride single file on trails. Not doing so widens trails, increases erosion and degrades the scenic qualities we all come to enjoy. Wilderness users, always obtain a Wilderness Permit (free) at the self issuing permit station at each trailhead. Remember, the Wilderness group size limit is 12 people and 12 stock. This applies to all groups and is in place to avoid serious impacts to areas and help to maintain a “Wilderness experience” by preserving some degree of solitude to the Wilderness.
All trail users, please read the information
at the trailhead boards:
Be aware of any special restrictions that may apply to a certain trail or area; i.e.. fire restrictions, designated campsites at Green and Moraine Lakes, dog leash requirements, sanitation, trails closed to bikers or horse use, etc. Be aware that many of the trails on the Deschutes National Forest are high use this time of year and you may wish to seek a lighter use trail in order to experience a higher degree of solitude. Respect private property.
Plan ahead and go prepared with food, water, extra clothing, map/compass, fire starter, cell phone etc. to match the type of trail and backcountry experience you are seeking. Be sure your skill level and physical conditioning are up to the trip you are planning. Also, make sure the others in your group are also prepared. Let a reliable friend or family member know your plans and when you will return and what to do if you shouldn’t return as planned. Be sure to contact them upon your return.
Always consider and minimize the effects of your activities on the soils, vegetation, wildlife, water, and other trail users. Pack out all litter and remember to Leave No Trace!
Your help in following these trail etiquette and
safety practices will go a long way in maintaining the environment and a quality
experience for everyone.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Peak summer season is upon us! 08.02.04
Peak summer season is upon us!
August is here and that puts us in the peak summer recreation season on the Deschutes National Forest. What that means is potential for heavy recreation use on certain trails, backcountry Wilderness areas, campgrounds and day use areas. Weekends are especially busy at the more popular areas with parking limited and reaching maximum capacity at areas like Tumalo Falls, Deschutes River recreation sites, Todd Lake, Sparks Lake, Green and Devils Lakes Wilderness Trailheads, Elk and Cultus Lake areas, and many recreation sites around Wickiup and Crane Prairie Reservoirs and in the Newberry National Volcanic Monument. Even many weekdays when the high temperatures are in the 80-100 degree range plan on finding healthy crowds at many of the lake and river recreation sites. Plan on packing a little extra patience before heading out on your outings this time of year.
A note on packing, the recent thunderstorm activity is just a reminder to pack extra clothing and rain gear just in case your timing is off and you find yourself out on the trail with a dark cloud over your head ready to pelt you with rain, hail and lightning. You’ll be glad you packed the extra gear and in some cases it could be a lifesaver. People often forget how fast the weather can change in this area and what started out as a typical August day in shorts and t-shirt turns into a stormy wet and cold struggle for warmth and survival. Even driving can suddenly turn treacherous as one driver found out today when he suddenly hit one inch of hail and spun off the hwy. From summer to winter driving conditions in a matter of a few feet! So plan on changeable conditions and be ready to deal with it.
Just a few reminders on how to deal with life threatening conditions in the field:
Hypothermia, the critical loss of body heat, can be a more serious threat to a hiker or biker in August than a skier in January. A skier is typically well prepared and dressed for cold conditions. Most hikers, bikers, horse riders and other trail and backcountry users this time of year are thinking more about sun burn and mosquitoes. The cold hard fact is they could be more exposed to hypothermic conditions when the temperature drops from 80 to 50 degrees within an hour with rain, hail and even possibly snow in July or August. In 50 (even 60) degrees and wet without a way to dry and warm yourself can set you up for life threatening hypothermia. It’s important during these sudden thunderstorms to keep yourself dry and warm with proper clothing. I’m sure most of us have experienced at least once the uncontrollable shivering associated with the initial stages of hypothermia. Allow that to continue long enough without adequate warming and death could be the end result.
Of course, exposure to lightning is another threat to outdoor users this time of year. A few points to keep in mind regarding lightning are: each year some 100 people are killed by lightning in the US with many more being injured lightning (though not always) tends to more often strike taller or more prominent objects like trees, ridges and mountain tops, and rock outcroppings and people that hang out in these areas during a storm also at higher risk are: boaters, swimmers, fisher peoples and activities in and around open water and people in open areas like meadows and other clearing metal objects i.e.. power poles/lines, ladders, antennas, cameras, metal frame backpacks and bicycles also attract lightning.
If you find yourself in the unfortunate
(though it can be very spectacular) position of being caught in a thunderstorm
of close proximity, a few things you can do to reduce your chances of being
1. get down from high points such as mountain and ridge tops;
2. avoid being near tall prominent trees or other objects that stand out
3. separate yourself from metal like metal framed backpacks, avoid all metal objects (unless in a vehicle)
4. avoid being in open areas, but if no choice try to crouch down without
5. touching the ground anymore than you have to i.e.. with only your feet
6. touching the ground; some lightning safety information reads lie down flat
7. avoid close contact with others - spread out 15-20 ft. apart avoid water
8. seek shelter in a building or vehicle
For more info on lightning safety seek websites like: http://www.lightningsafety.com/nlsi_pls/ploutdoor.htm
Other trails information:
95% of the District’s trails have been cleared of blowdown. Though we have received reports that some trails do have recently fallen trees. This likely from the erratic winds associated with recent thunderstorms.
All District trails (except for a few minor patches on the upper slopes of South Sister) are free of snow.
Mosquitoes have reached their peak in many areas and are “hopefully” declining
Trail construction projects include a reroute on the southern end of the Metolius Windigo Trail and new construction occurring on the northern end of the Metolius Windigo; Bridge improvements on the Fall Creek Trail; Construction of a new Wanoga Snow Park warming shelter
Wilderness trail use is increasing with overnight use in the Moraine and Green Lakes areas expected to become heavy over the coming weeks. Be sure to read the information at the trailhead register and information boards about DESIGNATED CAMPSITES, FIRE BANS, DOG LEASH REQUIREMENTS, ETC. And be sure to obtain your WILDERNESS PERMIT for DAY AND OVERNIGHT use at the trailhead. Be aware that the Wilderness Permit (for day and overnight users entering the Wilderness) is not the same as the Forest Recreation Pass (required for parking your vehicle at many trailheads). The Wilderness Permit is free and self issuing at the individual Wilderness trailheads. It serves to provide Wilderness managers with vital use data and also provides information critical for search and rescue missions.
Climbing activity on South Sister and Broken Top is increasing and weekend hikers making the South Sister Summit can reach over 200/day in August. You won’t be alone this time of year. Also be aware of the hazards involved in climbing the local volcanoes. Serious or fatal falls like the recent fatalities on Mt. Washington are only one of the hazards. Exposure, over extending yourself, dehydration, crevasse dangers, disorientation, etc. are a few others.
90 trees are yet across 9 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail from Irish Taylor Lakes north to Tadpole Lake. We hope to have these cleared in about a week.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Road 370 from Hwy 46 near Todd Lake to Road 16 near Three Creek Lake is now open 07.21.04
Last week’s warm temperatures melted all but a few patches of snow remaining on the trails in the Green Lakes, South Sister, Broken Top and Mt. Bachelor areas. These last snow patches are of minor concern for most hikers except for some climbers of South Sister who may not be familiar with hiking on summer snow. If the nights are cold, these patches can refreeze making morning travel on them hazardous without proper equipment (i.e. crampons/ice axe). Recent nighttime temps even at the 7-9,000’ level of South Sister haven’t been cold enough to refreeze solid to the point of requiring such equipment on the standard southern route. Yet, climbers should take care when crossing these temporary snow fields especially on steeper slopes.
Trail clearing progresses with about 90% of the District’s non-motorized trails now cleared for summer use. Nine miles of Pacific Crest Trail just north of Irish/Taylor Lakes remains partially blocked by blowdown, although it is cleared enough for trail users to negotiate either around or over the remaining 90 or so logs. This section of trail is scheduled to be cleared in about 2 weeks. There are only a few trees to be cleared yet on the Green Lakes, Broken Top, and Todd Lake trails. All other District Wilderness trails are now cleared. It is also reported that nearly all Sisters Ranger District Wilderness Trails are also cleared.
The few remaining non-wilderness trails in need of clearing include the Lemish Lake area trails, a few trails in the Swamp Wells trail system, a few trails in the Newberry Crater area, the Flagline Trail which is not open until August 15 due to Elk calving, and the upper section of the Bridge Creek Trail.
While on the topic of Wilderness, I would like to send out a reminder of the requirement to obtain a Wilderness permit at Three Sisters Wilderness Trailheads. Both day and overnight use of the Three Sisters Wilderness requires groups to complete as instructed a self issuing wilderness permit at the individual trailheads. These permits are free. The information gathered from these permits helps in cases of search and rescue as well as provides Wilderness managers vital information on use patterns in Wilderness. In addition, information posted at all trailheads provides trail users with important safety information and use restrictions. The aim here is to help make every bodies outdoor experience a safer and more enjoyable one as well as protect this vital natural resource.
A big “Thank You” to all the volunteers and trail crew members who have helped with clearing and maintaining the hundreds of miles of District hiker, biker and horse trails over the past few months. Even with an average year of blowdown it takes thousands of hours of basically hard labor to complete this task. Maintenance work will continue over the next few months with improvements being made to trail drainage, trail tread, bridges, signing, etc.
The big road news update is that Road 370 from Hwy 46 near Todd Lake to Road 16 near Three Creek Lake is now fully open for summer use. It’s very important to remember that especially along this road, vehicles are restricted to only the open roadway and parking areas. This is a fragile alpine area with dry and wet meadows, streams and high elevation vegetation that are easily damaged by off road vehicle travel. So please help protect this sensitive area by remaining on the designated travel ways and trails. The opening of Road 370 allows vehicle access to Broken Top trailhead as well as trail access to the northern section of the District’s Metolius-Windigo Trail. If you should witness any unlawful or damaging vehicle use in this or other public land areas, please contact Law Enforcement officials by calling (541) 388-0170.
Be aware that it is fast becoming a tinder dry forest as the season progresses with hot and dry weather. Several lightening and human caused fires have been kept to a minimum in recent days, but the potential for larger fires increases with each day. As the fire danger increases local fire restrictions will be imposed on the Deschutes National Forest in the near future beginning with the Industrial Fire Precaution Level increasing to III this Thursday. Campfire, vehicle, and smoking restrictions are expected to follow shortly after that. Please be extra cautious over the coming weeks with any related fire use and stay informed on the most recent fire related restrictions.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
95% of non-wilderness trails are snow free 07.23.04
Only minor changes in the trail report from Monday's short
summary. Most trails in the Newberry Crater have now been cleared including
the Crater Rim Trail. Also, just got word that the Tumalo Mt. Trail is free of
blowdown and snow. Remaining patches of snow on the high elevation trails should
be melting out rapidly with this weekend's forecasted temperatures of highs in
the 90's to 100 degrees at the lower elevations. Road 370 will remain closed to
vehicle traffic over the weekend, but scheduled opening is later next week after
the remaining snow patches melt out. See attached report for further details and
next week I will have the trail conditions tables updated and out. We are
rapidly approaching 100% of trail clearing and snow free for the Bend/Fort Rock
Ranger District trails.
Climbing South Sister?
One last note as we are getting increasing requests for climbing conditions on South Sister. The South Sister Climbers Trail is reported to be cleared of blowdown however there are still a few slow melting snow fields that climbers will have to negotiate over the next 2 weeks or so. For most climbers these snow fields are not a major obstacle but for some can be difficult and even hazardous if icy and may pose postholing hazards. If you are hesitant to deal with these snow fields, they will likely be completely gone by second week in August. Do keep in mind the snow cap on the summit will always be there, but even that can be avoided starting normally about the same time.
Important things to remember when planning on climbing South Sister:
Go prepared for almost any weather conditions;
Carry extra food, water, and clothing in addition to the "Ten Essentials";
Know your limits and the limits of others in your party;
Let a reliable friend or family know your planned route, duration and return;
Know at what point to back down due to weather, exhaustion, approaching sunset, etc.;
Due to abrasive rock, limited water and shade, and difficulty for most dogs we strongly advise against taking dogs to the summit.
Note: Search this website for more information on Climbing South Sister --Webmeister
95% of non-wilderness trails are snow free with the only lingering snow to be found is on the Metolius-Windigo Trail around the Todd Lake to Happy Valley area, Mt. Bachelor, and possibly Tumalo Mt.. Approximately 70% of the District’s non-wilderness trails are now cleared of blowdown. Most of the remaining non-wilderness trails in need of clearing include: Lemish Lake, Clover Meadow-Lemish Trail, north section of Metolius-Windigo Trails, Tumalo Mt., Flagline Tie (Flagline is closed until August 15), Swampy-Dutchman, Arnold Ice Cave Trail, Swamp Wells, and 40% of Newberry Crater trails.
Of the District’s Wilderness trails, patchy snow yet remains on South Sister Climbers, Moraine Lake, Green Lakes/Fall Creek, Soda Creek, Broken Top, Todd Lake Trail, and possibly a short section of PCT just south of Mirror Lake. All other Wilderness Trails are reported to be snow free. Wilderness trail clearing is mostly complete except for all of the above mentioned trails and also 9 miles of Pacific Crest Trail north of Irish/Taylor Lakes. Except for a few long term snow fields that may yet need to be crossed on the upper slopes of South Sister, these trails should be completely snow free and cleared by August 10. Dozens of climbers over the past couple of weeks have reported getting lost on the South Sister decent when loosing the main trail due to snow coverage.
Reports of mosquitoes continue to come in ranging from moderate to impossible. Plan accordingly with repellent and netting. The dryer areas of the District are reported to be declining in mosquito populations.
Wilderness rangers begin full patrols into the Wilderness and we’re asking hikers and horse riders to please be aware of existing regulations especially those effecting the high use areas around Green Lakes, Moraine Lake, South Sister, Broken Top, and Todd Lake. In particular are the requirements for Wilderness Permits, camping in designated campsites, fire restrictions, sanitation and dogs on leash. Please read the information on the Wilderness information boards and permit registers at the trailheads for complete details.
Road 370 from Todd Lake to Happy Valley is yet closed due to a few lingering patches of snow but is scheduled for opening July 30.
Here’s a short note on the BLM’s Dry River Canyon located just southeast of Bend:
Prineville BLM has re-opened
Dry River Canyon to the public, effective July 2. The canyon, located adjacent
to Highway 20 approximately 20 miles southeast of Bend, had been closed since
March 1 due to sensitive wildlife concerns. For more information, contact Gavin
Hoban, BLM Outdoor Recreation Planner at (541) 416-6879.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Snow conditions on the higher trails in the Bend - Ft. Rock District 07.01.04
is a summary of what we are expecting for this Fourth of July weekend trail
conditions on the Bend/Fort Rock Ranger District:
Snow melt in the high country continues to accelerate with the warm temps.
Present snow covered trails (patchy to 100% snow covered) include:
**Todd Lake area patchy - ninety percent snow with the lake ice free. Green Lakes/Fall Creek/Soda Creek/Moraine Lake trails and area 60-90% snow covered starting approximately three quarters of a mile from trailheads. Broken Top Trail and area access is still blocked by snow with Roads 370 and 380 to Broken Top Trailhead not likely to be snow free and open for at least another month.
**South Sister Climbers Trail from Devils Lake is 60-90% covered by snow starting ½ mile from the trailhead.
**Sisters Mirror Lake Trail is 40-70% covered by snow starting ¾ mile from the trailhead.
**Trails out of Elk Lake Trailhead are patchy to 30% snow covered. Pacific Crest Trail is under patchy snow in the south end of the District and reported to be 2-4 ft. deep with snow in the Wickiup Plains area.
**Other trails/areas on the District’s west side (off Cascade Lakes Hwy) around the 6,000’ elevation may have patchy snow for the next few days but this will change over the next few days.
Newberry National Volcanic Monument trails are nearly all free of snow except for the higher elevations of Newberry Crater rim which is approx. 40% under patchy snow conditions.
Trails cleared over this past week include: Winopee Lakes trail to Teddy Lakes and Pacific Crest Trail, Sparks Lake/Ray Atkeson Trails, some trails in Quinn Meadow Horse camp area to Lava Lake, 1 ½ miles of Bridge Creek trail and the North Fork Trail above Tumalo Falls. Scheduled trail clearing for this week includes some Newberry Crater trails and Wilderness trail clearing includes: Corral Swamp just north of Cultus Lake, Six Lakes trail and possibly Many Lakes trail.
Other District Trail updates include:
The Wilderness information kiosk at Green Lakes Trailhead will be staffed and in service for the summer, 7 days/wk. starting July 1.
The dog leash regulation for trails/areas on Green Lakes Trail, Moraine Lake Trail, South Sister Climbers Trail, Broken Top Trail, Soda Creek Trail, and Todd Lake Trail and areas around the Lakes goes into effect starting July 1 and runs through October 1. During this period ALL dogs must remain on leash or risk receiving a $200 citation. Due to the heavy concentration of use on these trails and in these areas, conflicts between dogs and people, stock, and wildlife have created safety issues. Please help us eliminate these safety related conflicts and maintain your pet on a leash. For those choosing not to leash your dog you do have the option of hiking and horse riding on the many miles of trails not requiring dog leashes. We do however ask that you maintain either voice or physical control of your dog, especially in the presence of other trail users and wildlife.
Road 600 to Irish and Taylor Lakes is reported to be cleared and snow free to at least Many Lakes Trailhead. The road is reported to be in poor condition and higher clearance 4 wheel drive is recommended.
Mosquitoes in many areas of the District are reported to be “very friendly” with moderate to high populations. Plan on packing insect repellent, a head net and maybe even a unit or two of blood for an on the spot transfusion for those areas typically heavy with mosquitoes.
Weather forecast for the next few days calls for possible thunderstorm activity so be sure to pack your ten essentials including extra clothing and rain gear.
Remember: ANY FIREWORKS ARE PROHIBITED ON NATIONAL FOREST LANDS so please leave them at home. The fire danger is increasing almost daily with dryer and hotter conditions and this is expected to continue throughout the summer.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Summer sun opens area trails! 06.23.04
The days have been perfect for trail activities
and more warming weather is on the way. Snow melt is accelerating with most snow
now confined above 5,800 ft. on the District's west side and above 7,000 ft. in
the Newberry National Volcanic Monument. Trail clearing continues into the
mid-elevation trails and crews have begun clearing on Wilderness Trails.
70% of the District's Three Sisters Wilderness Trails are yet under patchy to solid snow. Expect to hit patchy to solid snow 1/4 - 3/4 mile out of Green Lakes and Devils Lake Trailheads. Should you decide to hike on snow covered trails, be aware of postholing hazards. Also be aware that summer trails yet snow covered are difficult to impossible to follow and several individuals and groups have reported “losing the trail” shortly after encountering moderate snow conditions.
Approximately 70% of the District's section of the Pacific Crest Trail is yet under snow. Trail clearing of the snow free sections is scheduled to start next week.
The road to Paulina Peak is now open to vehicle traffic though be aware there is yet some snow around the viewpoint at the top.
Road access to Todd Lake and Sparks Lake trailheads is now snow free though expect to find snow around most of the Todd Lake shoreline.
For dog users planning on heading into the Todd Lake, Green Lakes, Broken Top, Moraine Lake and South Sister areas and trails this summer, remember that the new leash regulation that went into effect last summer is again in effect July 1 through September 30. Please help us reduce user conflicts in these areas and leash your pet as required.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Snow is melting on area trails! 06.13.04
Weather forecast over the next few days is
looking favorable for snow melt and summer trail activities. The snow line
continues to move up the slopes freeing up more summer trails. Snow yet blocks
approximately 70% of the District's Wilderness trails and 35% of the
non-wilderness trails. With the exception of the Cultus Lake area, winter
blowdown levels are looking light to moderate at worst. Trail clearing is
progressing and Wilderness crews and volunteers have now begun clearing of
blowdown from the Wilderness trails.
Trailhead access continues to improve with Green Lakes, Devils Lake, Mirror Lake, and Sparks Lake boat ramp and trailheads now snow free and mostly accessible. Do be aware that you will likely encounter at least patchy snow on the Sparks Lake trails and solid snow just 1/2 - 3/4 mile out from the other trailheads. Access to South Sister Summit is approx. 80% over snow. Be careful of postholing. Todd Lake is yet snowed in, but access to the parking area may be snow free within the next week.
Patchy to solid snow will be encountered 1-2 miles above Tumalo Falls on Bridge Creek and North Fork Trails.
Paulina Lakeshore Trail is now cleared of blowdown. Due to snow, only limited trail clearing has begun in the Charlton Lake area however, Road 4690 from Hwy 46 to Waldo Lake Road is snow free.
The east entrance into Newberry Caldera is now snow free. The Caldera floor and recreation sites are now also snow free. The road to Paulina Peak is yet blocked by snow for another 7-10 days at least.
The road 4606 bridge across Tumalo Creek just upstream of Shelvin Park is now closed for reconstruction. The bridge will be closed for 4 weeks. Recommended access for Tumalo Creek and Mrazek Trails in that area is from Shelvin Park itself.
Other construction news includes the breaking of ground for the new Wanoga Sno-Park warming shelter (opening this winter) and also construction began on the access road to the new Wanoga Snow Play area scheduled to open winter of 2005/06.
Except for the experienced backcountry skiers accessing the high level snows, the winter trails season is considered over for this year. Snowmobiling is no longer permitted out of the Dutchman Flat area due to insufficient snow cover. The snowmobiling access from the Todd Lake road is no longer recommended due to very marginal conditions. Time to shift into summer activities.
For further Bend/Fort Rock Ranger District trail condition details see the Spring Trails Recreation Report.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Trail conditions for Memorial Day Weekend 05.25.04
Summer trails are thawing (of snow) at a moderate rate with all lower elevations and most mid elevations (up to 5,200’ District Westside and 6,000’ District Eastside) snow free. Being all Wilderness trails are above 4,800’ you can plan on encountering solid snow on 95% of our Wilderness trails. The only Wilderness trails at this time reported to be partially free of snow are ½ mile north of Cultus Lake on Winopee Lake Trail and about ½ mile up the Lucky Lake trail. Six Lakes and Elk Lake Trailheads are mostly snow free but expect to find mostly snow on the trails. Wilderness Permits are required starting this Friday, May 28 thru October 31 and will be available (free and self issuing) at most of the Wilderness Trailheads that are either free of snow or just off Hwy 46. Mirror Lake, Devils Lake, South Sister Climbers, and Green Lakes Trailheads are yet blocked by snow and will have little to no parking available this weekend. Parking along Hwy 46 in these areas will likely be very limited or not possible as only the Hwy travel lanes were plowed free of snow. Should you decide to hike on snow covered trails, be aware of the postholing hazards.
With the exception of the Cultus Lake area and a few isolated areas overall blowdown across the District Trails is looking on the light side fortunately. Trail clearing is in progress with most mountain bike trails in the Phils Trailhead area to Skyliner Trailhead free of blowdown. Thank you Central Oregon Trails Alliance volunteers for your continued dedication with trail clearing and maintenance. Deschutes River trails are also cleared of blowdown. Trail clearing has just begun in the Cultus Lake area with 3 miles of Winopee Lake trail (non-wilderness) cleared. Expect all other trails in the Cultus Lake area to have moderate to heavy blowdown across the trails and snow above 5,000’. Fall River Trail south of Sunriver has been cleared of blowdown as well as the trails around South and North Twin Lakes. Trail clearing on the remainder of the District is on hold until more trail crew members begin work, the snow melts out or crews finish other priority projects.
Mt. Bike trails in the Phils Trailhead to Deschutes River to Skyliner Trailhead are reported to be in very good condition. COTA has been working on opening up a couple of new sections of single track to make this some of the best riding around. For more info: http://www.cotamtb.org/
Cascade Lakes Hwy Opening?
Cascade Lakes Hwy has been plowed from Mt. Bachelor to Elk Lake with the official opening scheduled for around noon Tuesday, May 25. Parking along this section of Hwy will basically be non-existent this weekend as only the Hwy is plowed and the trailheads and other recreation sites along the Hwy are allowed to melt out on their own. Parking is available around Elk Lake though snow yet blocks some roads and recreation sites. Road 370 to Todd Lake and Broken Top Trailhead is fully blocked by snow. Full melt out and opening of this road is not expected until around mid-July.
Newberry National Volcanic Monument?
Paulina Crater roads and recreation sites have been plowed but expect 1-4 ft. of snow on about 50% of the Crater floor. The road to Paulina Peak will be closed due to snow until later in June. Nearly all Paulina Crater Trails are blocked by snow. Monument Trails outside of the Crater are mostly snow free, but expect at least light levels of blowdown. Lava Lands is open for the season.
The only usable snow park and winter trails are out of Dutchman Sno-Park. Expect the Sno-Park to be at capacity all weekend. Snow conditions on the ski and snowmobile trails above Dutchman Flat can be expected to be in fair to possibly good condition. Do be aware that low snow hazards do exist on and off trails. Snow depth in the Dutchman area ranges from bare ground to 4 ft. with conditions improving at the higher elevations. Be aware that all winter motorized closures (Wilderness, Watershed, Todd Lake, etc.) are still in effect.
As a few vehicle owners have found out, the vehicle break-in season at recreation sites is unfortunately upon us. If at all possible, DO NOT LEAVE VALUABLES IN YOUR VEHICLE. If you have no other choice, please at least stow contents out of view. Each successful break-in only provides incentives for these thieves to continue this activity until they are caught. As a two time victim, I can tell you it ruins your day to return to your vehicle only to find some bandito has broken a window and made off with what you thought were items of no value to anyone else.
Thanks and have a safe holiday weekend!
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Cascades Lakes Highway to open next Tuesday! 05.18.04
We have had continued rapid melting of snow up in
the higher elevations. ODOT Plowing has been completed on Century Drive and the
Scenic Highway is set to open Tuesday, May 25, 2004, a week earlier than usual.
Chris Sabo should be back to the rec report for next week. Hope you all have a great summer!!
--Steve Hayden, Trail Crew Supervisor
Plowing is continuing on Century Drive! 05.11.04
Another week has gone by and it is time for the
trails recreation report. The weather has been a little cooler than normal and
we have still been having snowmelt but not as fast as in the past. We even got
an inch of new snow up in the mountains last night. But not to worry spring will
be coming soon. Plowing is continuing on Century Drive. The road is open to Lava
lake and should be ready to open fully by Memorial day weekend. Snow is still
common on most roads on the west side above 5,500' and it is becoming less
common on the east side on the Fort Rock District above 5,700'.
Here's some news from Gavin Hoban at the Prineville BLM:
Seasonal motorized use restrictions in the Badlands Wilderness Study Area (WSA) have been lifted, effective May 1. Routes 4, 5, 6, and 7 are now open to motorized travel. Public lands visitors are reminded that vehicle use is limited to designated routes only within the Badlands WSA. Additionally, the seasonal prairie falcon closure at Badlands Rock has been lifted so hikers can once again access the summit. The wildlife closure at Dry River Canyon, 20 miles southeast of Bend, remains in effect; the entire canyon is closed to all uses including hiking and mountain bike riding. For further information, please contact Gavin Hoban at Prineville BLM at (541) 416-6879.
Spring is well under way in the lower elevations near town and the Mt. Bike trails near Phil's trailhead are in fine shape. We made some changes to the trails heading out of the trailhead, along with the help of the local mountain bike club and now we have 3 single-track trails heading out of the trailhead. The signs are installed, the new map is made and available at the trailhead and the trails are in fine shape. Give them a try. They are a little bumpy now but give them some time to be ridden on and they will
smooth out to be very nice. Here is the new trail map.
--Steve Hayden, Trail Crew Supervisor
Snow line high, most lower trails are open! 05.04.04
Tumalo Falls Trailhead is now open for the season
but, at this time most of the trails above (Bridge Ck , North Fork, South Fork,
and upper Mrazek are mostly blocked by snow. With warm temps the snow line in
this are should steadily rise over the coming weeks with full access estimated
to be sometime around mid June. Road 370 will likely not open until sometime in
Snowline for most of the District is about 5,100 ft. on the Westside of Hwy 97 and 5,800 ft. on the eastside of Hwy 97.
Dutchman Sno-park and area has approx. 6-7 ft. of snow with the snow depth increasing with elevation to an estimated 9 ft. in the area around the Sisters. Snow conditions are good for winter trails activities out of Dutchman. Vista Butte, Swampy and Wanoga Sno-Parks are fast becoming fair to marginal for winter trail activities. All other snow parks are out of service from the winter trails perspective.
Hwy 46 snow plowing is now progressing from Lava Lakes to Mt. Bachelor with the normal opening scheduled for Memorial Day Weekend. The section from Lava to Elk Lake will open before that though.
Low elevation hiker, biker, and horse trails are in fair to great condition with most of the trails out of Phil's Trailhead cleared of snow and blowdown to about 5,000 ft. Be aware that sections of Storm King Trail are reported to have moderate amounts of logging slash on the trail. The new trails out of Phils Trailhead are now open. Be sure to pick up a new map of the area.
All Wilderness Trails and Trailheads are yet blocked by snow as well as the Pacific Crest Trail. There's anywhere from 2-8 ft. of snow on these trails.
Fall River Trail is cleared of blowdown. Most other trails have not yet been cleared but the blowdown levels are reported to be light to moderate in most cases.
I will be out of town for the next two weeks, but Steve Hayden will be sending out the weekly updates. Enjoy the spring!
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
Weather for the last few days has been more typical for March 04.21.04
Well, since we didn’t really have a month of
March this year, I guess it decided to pop in for an April visit. Weather for
the last few days has been more typical for March with snow in the mid-higher
elevations and mixed snow/rain for the lower elevations. This has caused a
slowing to reversal of the receding snowline for the time being with some minor
muddying of the lower elevation trails.
Present snowline is at about 4,800’ on the District’s west side and 5,400’ on the east side. Some patchy snow may be found in isolated areas below these elevations. Forecast calls for gradual warming and drying into the weekend.
Road access into Tumalo Falls may be opening next week with the last remaining patches of snow melting out of the parking lot. Trails above the parking area can be expected to be under varying depths of snow into June.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness, Bend/Fort Rock RD, Deschutes NF
Spring is charging along and winter is fading 04.12.04
Spring is charging along and winter is fading
(melting) away with above normal temperatures. Winter trail conditions have
deteriorated at all of the lower and most mid elevation snow parks. Poor to
marginal winter trail conditions can be found at Wanoga, Swampy and Edison.
Meissner is only for the desperate skiers, and Skyliner, 6 Mile and 10 Mile are
out of business for the winter season. Vista Butte and Dutchman Snow Parks are
operational with adequate snow and fair to good spring conditions.
All lower elevation trails and many mid elevation winter trails are likewise either snow free or well on their way. Trail grooming is now limited very intermittent grooming on the snowmobile trails from Dutchman Flat to Moon Mt. and down to Happy Valley area. Again, that is at best 1 day/week to 1 day/ 2 weeks. Elk Lake Resort has closed for the winter trail season.
On the summer trails side of the fence, conditions are rapidly improving on the lower to mid elevation trails with the snow line rapidly receding.
Here’s a quick run down on some of the summer trail conditions:
Mt. bike trails in the Phil’s Trail area are
mostly snow free below 4,800’. Tumalo Creek Trails out of Shevlin are snow free
except for patchy snow above Skyliner Lodge. Mrazek bike trail is about 50% snow
All Deschutes River access trailheads along Forest Road 41 (just upstream of Bend) are snow free. Meadow Picnic, Lava Island, Big Eddy, Aspen, Dillon Falls, Slough, Benham Falls and Benham East Day Use sites area are fully accessible. The Deschutes River Trail from Meadow to Benham Falls East is 100% snow free and mostly firm and dry with only a few trees down across the trail. Dogs required to be on leash at all times beginning May 1.
Tumalo Falls trailhead is still partially blocked by snow and the gate yet closed 2 miles from the trailhead, but it could be open in another week. Expect trails above the trailhead to be under snow into late May.
Primary horse trails out of the Horse Butte area are snow free with only light blowdown across the trails.
Peter Skene Ogden Trail along Paulina Creek is snow free below 5,400’. Trails in the Newberry National Volcanic Monument above that elevation are yet under snow. The road to Lava Cast Forest is blocked by snow 8.5 miles from Hwy 97, but could be snow free by April 19. Lava Lands Visitor Center and trails will be fully open April 24.
Fall River Trail is snow free and is reported to be cleared of blowdown.
Wilderness Trails: All District wilderness trails are under 6-10 feet of snow and all Wilderness trailheads are inaccessible due to snow.
Pacific Crest Trail is under 6-9 feet of snow. All of the District’s PCT access trailheads are blocked by snow or the winter closure of Hwy 46.
Most paved roads around Wickiup and Crane Prairie Reservoirs and into Cultus Lake Boat Ramp are reported plowed free of snow and accessible. Cultus Lake area is yet under mostly snow. Hwy 46 from Deschutes Bridge to Mt. Bachelor is yet closed and will not be fully accessible until Memorial Day Weekend. The Hwy will likely open into Lava Lakes later this month and later yet to Elk Lake from the south only.
Road 21 from Ten Mile Sno-Park into Paulina Crater is in the process of being plowed and will open in time for fishing season on April 24. Until then it will remain closed at the Ten Mile gate and persons found driving on the closed section are subject a citation.
--Chris Sabo, Trails/Wilderness
A last but not least note to the cheers of many Mountain Bikers is the Katalo Fire Closure that WAS in effect west of Bend has been lifted. You can now enjoy the trails out of Phil’s Trailhead once again.