9/3/12 White River to Bonney Meadows Hike

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mileagemike25000
Posts: 475
Joined: February 8th, 2012, 7:40 pm
Location: Vancouver, WA

9/3/12 White River to Bonney Meadows Hike

Post by mileagemike25000 » September 4th, 2012, 8:18 pm

This wasn't our finest day for hiking. :( After hiking 9 of the last 10 days my wife was lethargic and my bum knee was not cooperating.

We started just off of NF-48 at a less than visible sign marking the trail. :?
1 TH on NF-48_(1).JPG
Since this parking spot is located between our trail endpoints, we headed down toward the White River to scope out the water flow and crossing area. The hike down was brutal on my knee and we almost turned back, but I decided to limp along. :shock:

After about a mile we reached the White River and I looked at the crossing, and then back at my wife. :cry:
2 White River Crossing_(1).JPG
We have almost no water crossing experience and I wasn't going to learn here. :x I know there have been other's that have crossed this but I'm not a big risk taker and want to be with other experienced hikers when and if I make this crossing! The wife declined to ever cross it unless the river divided before her feet! :roll:

And here's a better view of the river.
3 White River_(1).JPG
We headed back up the trail and continued past NF-48 until we intersected with road NF-4890. There was a sign for the Bonney Meadow trail showing the location where the trail continued across the road.
4 Sign on NF-4890_(1).JPG
Continuing past the road we ascended up the trail and saw a blank information board. A bit beyond the board we saw the sign for Badger Creek Wilderness. :o
5 Badger Creek Wilderness Boundary_(1).JPG
We really didn't expect to reach any wilderness so it was a nice surprise!

At this point the trail went up and up and up. My wife was tired and felt this was a death march. :? To me it felt like the hike to Salmon Butte and wouldn't be difficult under normal circumstances. The nice thing is that it didn't bother my knee to go uphill. :D

As we hiked up the trail we passed an interesting wood sign that read "Buck Burn" and there was a little metal placque that said "Buck Burn c.1900 + c1930".
6 Buck Burn Sign_(1).JPG
Near the top of this climb we saw another Badger Creek Wilderness sign just before reaching Bonney Meadows Road. This road didn't look too bad for driving.
7 Bonney Meadows Road is driveable_(1).JPG
Across the road there is a TH Sign for the continuation to the Forest Creek Loop and Boulder Lk. Tr #463.
8 Boulder Lake TH sign across road_(1).JPG
And then we finally got our first view of Bonney Meadow!
9 First view of Bonney Meadow_(1).JPG
Finally reaching another trail intersection that leads to the Hidden Meadows Tr #472/Forest Creek Tr#473 and the Bonney Meadows Campground.
10 Another trail junction for other explorations!_(1).JPG
We decided to go just a bit further toward Bonney Meadows CG. and were rewarded with the most fantastic view of Bonney Meadow with Mt. Hood in the background! :o
11 Bonney Meadow in all its' Awesomness!  Mt. Hood in background_(1).JPG
We turned around at this point to get back home and relax before another week of work after a long vacation. :x I also wanted to save my knee before the damage kept me from hiking next weekend.

The hike was 7.2 miles with an elevation gain of about 2200ft.
Bonney Meadow Trail.JPG

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bobcat
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Re: 9/3/12 White River to Bonney Meadows Hike

Post by bobcat » September 5th, 2012, 9:19 am

Is this what's called "binge hiking"? Sounds like you and your wife both got hangovers!

I did the Bonney/White River crossing earlier in the summer. The first time, I went upstream from the trail/river confluence and picked what I thought was a shallower ford. I ended up sinking into a hole on the far bank and needed the help of an overhanging alder to prevent going down to my armpits. On the way back, I just crossed where the trail comes in. It was fine: up to my thighs, but I didn't feel I was going to get washed away or anything. A pole or staff is good for balance in these situations. Also, I keep my boots on - you squelch a bit afterward, but they offer good protection.

I've been up Bonney to the meadows every couple of years. However, this time of year (September/October) I use it as a link to HawkWatch's raptor banding/counting activities at the top of Bonney Butte (You can also drive there, but the road is painfully slow and rough). That's a lot of fun and very interesting, so if you get the chance, go again, but head up to the top of the butte.

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mileagemike25000
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Joined: February 8th, 2012, 7:40 pm
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Re: 9/3/12 White River to Bonney Meadows Hike

Post by mileagemike25000 » September 5th, 2012, 5:27 pm

bobcat wrote:Is this what's called "binge hiking"? Sounds like you and your wife both got hangovers!
Sure does seem that way! I'm still recovering today but tomorrow I go to the physical therapist where I'll likely get a lecture about the definition of "overuse"! :lol:

I believe we read your TR on that hike you had? I think you have a bit more skill and confidence than we do! In addition, and probably more importantly, I carry a large amount of electronics (SLR camera with lens, Satellite Phone, smart phone, etc..) that aren't in waterproof bags and it would be a huge loss to take a spill! Wearing the boots during a crossing sounds smart for the purpose of stability/safety but I have a comfort issue with waterlogged shoes. :? On the other hand, my wife loves wet boots and claims they feel like Gel inserts. :lol:
bobcat wrote:I've been up Bonney to the meadows every couple of years. However, this time of year (September/October) I use it as a link to HawkWatch's raptor banding/counting activities at the top of Bonney Butte (You can also drive there, but the road is painfully slow and rough). That's a lot of fun and very interesting, so if you get the chance, go again, but head up to the top of the butte.
That sounds like an interesting event to watch. We're going to look into it for a Fall activity. Thanks for that suggestion!

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