Rescue at Abiqua Falls

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justpeachy
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Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by justpeachy » March 12th, 2017, 8:16 pm

"A 16-year-old girl was rescued Saturday afternoon after falling almost 80 feet while hiking to Abiqua Falls, east of Salem, with her family."

http://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-north ... t_plu.html

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buckwheat
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Re: Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by buckwheat » March 13th, 2017, 5:01 am

Unfortunate how much of the news around hiking is about hikers getting lost or injured. Hope the girl is okay though.

I haven't been to Abiqua falls myself, is the trail along a cliff or just a really steep sloped hillside? Or do you think they were off trail exploring and just lost their footing?

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forestkeeper
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Re: Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by forestkeeper » March 13th, 2017, 8:18 am

buckwheat wrote:
I haven't been to Abiqua falls myself, is the trail along a cliff or just a really steep sloped hillside? Or do you think they were off trail exploring and just lost their footing?
The "trail" is terribly steep and at an average of a 70* angle for 50% of the hike. You have to descend/ascend by rope (a makeshift rope is tied at the top but is pretty frayed and worn out) and the trail tread consists of soil/rock. So when wet, this trail is treacherous. I go to Abiqua Falls (just a few miles from Butte Creek Falls) during Spring and Summer when it's dry, and the trail is still difficult. And the 2.5 mile drive to Abiqua is a rough drive in which in most cases you need a 4x to access.

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kaltbluter
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Re: Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by kaltbluter » March 13th, 2017, 9:54 am

forestkeeper wrote:The "trail" is terribly steep and at an average of a 70* angle for 50% of the hike. You have to descend/ascend by rope (a makeshift rope is tied at the top but is pretty frayed and worn out) and the trail tread consists of soil/rock. So when wet, this trail is treacherous. I go to Abiqua Falls (just a few miles from Butte Creek Falls) during Spring and Summer when it's dry, and the trail is still difficult. And the 2.5 mile drive to Abiqua is a rough drive in which in most cases you need a 4x to access.
I see comments like this on the internet from time to time and I have to wonder if you're choosing the rather steep non-trail, the one referred to as a 'dangerous scramble' on the field guide map. The actual trail isn't bad at all.

I grew up just a few miles down the road from there and Abiqua/Butte Creek is a regular hike when I'm visiting family. A couple years ago I took my kids and their cousins there in April. Both seven-year-olds did fine and only needed occasional hand holding in the muddier parts.
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pdxgene
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Re: Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by pdxgene » March 13th, 2017, 4:30 pm

Depending on who is going to be paying all the bills, if the lawyers and insurance companies get involved don't be surprised to see access cut off (well, permissible access at least).

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adamschneider
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Re: Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by adamschneider » March 13th, 2017, 5:00 pm

kaltbluter wrote:I see comments like this on the internet from time to time and I have to wonder if you're choosing the rather steep non-trail, the one referred to as a 'dangerous scramble' on the field guide map. The actual trail isn't bad at all.
I agree. I'm guessing people set out from the trailhead and then immediately take a right turn toward that clearing at the edge of a cliff, instead of staying in the woods to the left. It'd be an easy mistake to make.

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jessbee
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Re: Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by jessbee » March 13th, 2017, 8:56 pm

kaltbluter wrote:
forestkeeper wrote:The "trail" is terribly steep and at an average of a 70* angle for 50% of the hike. You have to descend/ascend by rope (a makeshift rope is tied at the top but is pretty frayed and worn out) and the trail tread consists of soil/rock. So when wet, this trail is treacherous.
I see comments like this on the internet from time to time and I have to wonder if you're choosing the rather steep non-trail, the one referred to as a 'dangerous scramble' on the field guide map. The actual trail isn't bad at all.
Trail descriptions are very subjective. I can take two different people on the same hike in the same conditions and one will be fearing for his life while the other can tromp around in flip flops with no problem. I didn't think this hike lived up to its scary reputation, but I'm also used to hiking, scrambling and climbing on sketchy stuff. So, what's"not bad" to me might be death-defying to someone else.

I'm honestly surprised there haven't been other major rescues out there, considering both the drive and the trail conditions as well as its Instagram-hiker status.
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adamschneider
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Re: Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by adamschneider » March 13th, 2017, 9:27 pm

forestkeeper wrote:The "trail" is terribly steep and at an average of a 70* angle for 50% of the hike. You have to descend/ascend by rope
Oh, and I'm sorry, but I just have to call out the hyperbole here. :roll: The trail drops 250-300 feet in about 1/4 of a mile. (After that, it goes another 0.2 miles or so along the riverbank.) That's an average slope of just over 20% — which translates to an 11° angle. Granted, some parts of the trail are steep, and there are some helpful ropes on the nastier bits, but if you experienced a 70° drop at Abiqua Falls, then you were in a kayak going over the lip...

Webfoot
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Re: Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by Webfoot » March 14th, 2017, 5:31 am

forestkeeper wrote:The "trail" is terribly steep and at an average of a 70* angle for 50% of the hike. You have to descend/ascend by rope (a makeshift rope is tied at the top but is pretty frayed and worn out) and the trail tread consists of soil/rock. So when wet, this trail is treacherous. I go to Abiqua Falls (just a few miles from Butte Creek Falls) during Spring and Summer when it's dry, and the trail is still difficult. And the 2.5 mile drive to Abiqua is a rough drive in which in most cases you need a 4x to access.
Sorry for the pile-on but a 70° angle is a technical slab climb not a hike. Maybe you mean 70% grade? I could see parts of it being that steep. I've only been there once but it was not bad at all, just a bit of care needed. A wedding ceremony took place at the falls while I was there. Nevertheless I agree that it could be treacherous when wet, and bringing your own handline might make sense in such conditions, as I wouldn't trust an old rope either.

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miah66
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Re: Rescue at Abiqua Falls

Post by miah66 » March 14th, 2017, 11:03 am

adamschneider wrote: I'm guessing people set out from the trailhead and then immediately take a right turn toward that clearing at the edge of a cliff, instead of staying in the woods to the left. It'd be an easy mistake to make.
My first visit there I did this. I was lucky, though I did slide down a long steep stretch on mud and rocks, uncontrollably too. There is no signage and there are two equally worn paths. I picked one, and it was wrong...no way to turn back either once I started down. I'm kind of surprised more ppl aren't injured or even killed here.
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