Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb. 22

Discussions and Trip Reports for off-trail adventures and rediscovering lost trails
User avatar
Don Nelsen
Posts: 3741
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm
Location: Vancouver, WA

Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb. 22

Post by Don Nelsen » February 23rd, 2014, 1:01 pm

I've been wanting to take a look at the east side of Bridal Veil Canyon for awhile. Lidar shows some traces of old road grades I've yet to explore so with the weather cooperating I headed out Sat. morning. As I got ready to head up the hill on the remnants of an old grade, I noticed what looked like a car tire in a tree a hundred fifty feet down the slope. This location is just upstream from the uppermost of the three main Bridal Veil Falls that Chameleon (Zach) reported on five years ago. Investigating Zach's finds was on my ever lengthening to-do list so a little side trip to check this out suddenly took priority.

What do you know! A perfectly good '82 VW was attached to the tire I saw! - Well, maybe not so perfect - at least better than the famed Multnomah Basin Buick and the Bullet Car on the BV Plateau!
Image

The plate was covered in leaves so I climbed up the side of the car and brushed it off and got a good photo:
Image

Image

Once at the VW, I could see yet another car farther down the slope. this turned out to be a fairly late model Chrysler Sebring. It seemed too precariously perched for me to be tugging on the doors or hood to get a better ID on it, though, so I don't know the year. Any Chrysler fans out there have an idea. Of course, law enforcement can figure that out from the plate.
Image
Image

Once at the bottom, the three cars Zach reported five years ago were still there and I noticed another, much older, covered in vegetation a few feet upstream. Here are the cars in the stream:
Image
Image

This one is not really in the stream but right on the bank:
Image

Here's the one covered in brush. Looks like a 60's or early 70's pickup with a Gem Top bed cover:
Image

Anyway, that mission accomplished I headed back up and started out on the old road grade. I hiked up it years ago but thought it only went a short distance. Today, I could see that there had been a major slide many years ago and the road continued about 200 feet farther up.

About half of the mile and a half I explored was an easy hike with ferns and a few windfalls along the way. One more small slide a little farther up was challenging to get across as there was an abundance of blow down, but still not too difficult. near the edge of the plateau, there was quite a bit of salmon berry but the network of grades was easy to follow to where it connected with the main road/trail near the Toasted Tires location.

A good section:
Image

A not-so-good section;
Image

Once on top, I continued up the road and met Mandrake and friend and later ran into Aircooled and 8 or 9 Trails Club folks on an outing.

Another great day in the woods! 8.2 miles, 2,050 vertical.

The map: The dashed red on black is the new network of road grades:
Image

Don
"Everything works in the planning stage".

pablo
Posts: 1447
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm

Re: Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb

Post by pablo » February 23rd, 2014, 5:20 pm

Hey Don,

Creative parking places you're finding - I'm having a problem figuring out how that VW got in that place wedged in between trees. The old road bed looks like an interesting and shorter way up to the plateau. Good stuff, thx and looking forward to a revised map of the area with your recent findings.

--Paul
The future's uncertain and the end is always near.

User avatar
Don Nelsen
Posts: 3741
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm
Location: Vancouver, WA

Re: Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb

Post by Don Nelsen » February 23rd, 2014, 5:59 pm

pablo wrote:Hey Don,

Creative parking places you're finding - I'm having a problem figuring out how that VW got in that place wedged in between trees. The old road bed looks like an interesting and shorter way up to the plateau. Good stuff, thx and looking forward to a revised map of the area with your recent findings.

--Paul
Thanks Paul,

I owe you a debt of gratitude for inspiring me to take another look at the Palmer/Bridal Veil Plateau area after your TR up the ridge in December - thank you!

I wondered about the VW, too: It looked to me that it was heading straight down the slope when it encountered the tree with its front end and that caused the back end to come up. It then came back down enough to the right that it ended up resting on the tree behind. There are huge scars on most of the trees on that slope so it must be like pinball with cars! :shock:

As for the new road grade finds making a shorter way to the Plateau, yes, but 300' more vertical and not so easy. Interesting, though, and great scenery - there's a neat cliff band on the upper section of the first leg that needs some close inspection. Lots of caves and scenic ramparts.

Bad news about my maps: I suffered a complete hard drive failure last Monday and my backup hasn't been working and I didn't know it. I can resurrect everything from two years ago and older off of my older backup drive but much of the recent stuff may be toast. Live and learn! Anyway, another good excuse to go hiking some more and redo the maps.

Don
"Everything works in the planning stage".

User avatar
forestkeeper
Posts: 1291
Joined: July 23rd, 2011, 8:31 pm
Location: Oregon City
Contact:

Re: Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb

Post by forestkeeper » February 23rd, 2014, 8:20 pm

Exciting TR, Don! Why are those vehicles there? Are they accident caused? Or merely abandoned?

User avatar
Don Nelsen
Posts: 3741
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm
Location: Vancouver, WA

Re: Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb

Post by Don Nelsen » February 23rd, 2014, 9:26 pm

forestkeeper wrote:Exciting TR, Don! Why are those vehicles there? Are they accident caused? Or merely abandoned?
Will,

Really only two reasons: Insurance fraud, or stolen and dumped for the thrill of seeing them careen down the hill. Sad, but to (very) loosely paraphrase Belloq in the first of the Indiana Jones movies:

Belloq to Indy: “Look at this. It’s worthless. Scrap metal worth 9 cents/lb. But take it and hide it in the wilderness for a hundred years and its priceless….”

-Don
"Everything works in the planning stage".

User avatar
Splintercat
Posts: 8196
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm
Location: Portland
Contact:

Re: Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb

Post by Splintercat » February 23rd, 2014, 9:46 pm

I can resurrect everything from two years ago and older off of my older backup drive but much of the recent stuff may be toast. Live and learn! Anyway, another good excuse to go hiking some more and redo the maps.
Ugh. Sorry to hear that, Don. That stinks. :x

Also sorry to see all those cars in Bridal Veil Creek. I've been advocating simply closing the roads to vehicles (gated, allowing emergency vehicles), and that's one of the reasons -- but not too many agree with my bold idea on that one! Another option would be a guardrail along the relatively few sections where it's almost a direct drop down to the creek. At this point, they've probably leaked out whatever liquid pollutants were in them when they were dumped, so probably not a huge water quality hazard. Preventing more would be nice, though. Poor Bridal Veil Creek has been hammered over the years, that's for sure!

Thanks for posting, Don - excellent report!

Tom :)

justpeachy
Posts: 2839
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm
Location: Portland, OR
Contact:

Re: Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb

Post by justpeachy » February 24th, 2014, 9:47 am

Don Nelsen wrote:Bad news about my maps: I suffered a complete hard drive failure last Monday and my backup hasn't been working and I didn't know it. I can resurrect everything from two years ago and older off of my older backup drive but much of the recent stuff may be toast.
UGH! Sorry to hear that. The hard drive on my last Windows computer (before I switched over to a Mac) crashed on me in 2007 and I lost about half of my photo collection because I had been lax about my manual backups. It was a nightmare. I don't wish that experience on anyone!

aircooled
Posts: 454
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm
Location: Portland, OR

Re: Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb

Post by aircooled » February 24th, 2014, 9:47 am

Nice work, Don - and great to run into you on Saturday on the BV Plateau! With all these old cars to visit, I can see a new hike known as the "Tour de Coupe".
Attachments
candh_treasure.gif

VanMarmot
Posts: 1923
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm

Re: Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb

Post by VanMarmot » February 24th, 2014, 5:44 pm

Don - Between your TR and justpeachy's it seems like every abandoned and/or stolen car makes it way mysteriously to the BV Plateau. I like aircooled's "Tour de Coupe" Hike. Also Hiking with Hardtops on the BV Plateau or Don's Used Car and Hiking Emporium - You dump 'em, We hike 'em?

User avatar
Don Nelsen
Posts: 3741
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm
Location: Vancouver, WA

Re: Exploring old roads + more cars in Bridal Veil Creek Feb

Post by Don Nelsen » February 24th, 2014, 6:36 pm

Splintercat wrote:
.....Also sorry to see all those cars in Bridal Veil Creek. I've been advocating simply closing the roads to vehicles (gated, allowing emergency vehicles), and that's one of the reasons -- but not too many agree with my bold idea on that one! Another option would be a guardrail along the relatively few sections where it's almost a direct drop down to the creek. At this point, they've probably leaked out whatever liquid pollutants were in them when they were dumped, so probably not a huge water quality hazard. Preventing more would be nice, though. Poor Bridal Veil Creek has been hammered over the years, that's for sure!

Thanks for posting, Don - excellent report!

Tom :)
Tom, thanks for the compliments.

Agreed that the dumping is a sorry thing and I really don't have a solution to this problem. Closing the road, of course, would stop dumping on Palmer Mill but then there is equally steep and close-by Brower Road. There are already at least five cars off the side there. Though cars dumped off of Brower are unlikely to reach the creek itself, any pollutants would inevitably do so. Closing Palmer would make the trip from the west only five minutes or so longer but for folks coming from the east it would really be a pain - over 16 miles farther.

We keep trying to cure the disease but stopping it before it starts always seems to elude us.

-don
"Everything works in the planning stage".

Post Reply