Mud Springs and Jean Lake 6/26-6/27

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christabrews
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Joined: August 12th, 2018, 10:07 am

Mud Springs and Jean Lake 6/26-6/27

Post by christabrews » June 28th, 2020, 5:31 pm

This weekend, my boyfriend and I went to Badger Creek Wilderness with two objectives in mind - to find Mud Springs, and fish in Jean Lake. We were moderately successful.

Around 12pm on Friday, we started out on Lookout Mountain Rd in my truck to get near Jean Lake via Bennett Pass. The road lives up to its reputation! The truck handled it just fine. Our plan was to find a place to camp near the Jean Lake trailhead and then go looking for Mud Springs. We found a campsite about 0.1 mi from JLTH and set up there. Bennett pass was very busy. On our way in, we passed some people trying to haul a trailer down the road. We thought for sure they would end up turning around, but shortly after setting up our tent, we saw them go on by. It looked like one of those pop-up campers. I wonder if they made it out of there with that thing.

Mud Springs Trail #466 is certainly a lost hike. Non-existent would be a better descriptor. We got to approximately where the trailhead used to be, according to our GPS. There is not even a shred of evidence of there ever being a trail in that location. We decided to bushwhack it. We went about 0.5 miles, trying to follow the trail on the GPS, and did not find any sign of the trail or the springs. So we circled around, and went back, this time a bit more south of our original track. We stumbled upon a dry creek bed:
IMG_20200626_162701.jpg
IMG_20200626_162641.jpg
We followed it, and found what we believe is what used to be Mud Springs.
IMG_20200626_162620.jpg
It is located about 0.3 miles from the "trailhead." We did not find anything else in the area, so we are fairly confident we found what was left of Mud Springs. Can anyone else confirm? We would also be curious to see pictures of what it looked like when it was flowing if anyone has any. Coordinates: N 45.28132 W 121.54410

View of Mt Jefferson from Grasshopper Rd:
IMG_20200626_170254.jpg
In the morning, we packed up our fishing gear and hiked down to the lake. It was a beautiful day, warm and sunny. There was one group camped by the lake.
IMG_20200627_104002.jpg
There were thousands of tadpoles along the shore. I've never seen so many tadpoles in one place. They were swarming in some areas of the lake like this:
MVIMG_20200627_133813.jpg
Fishing was a bit slow. Did not see many rises. Caught and released a couple brookies. No pictures of them, unfortunately.
Spotted this little guy on our hike out:
IMG_20200627_164421.jpg
Edit: added coordinates

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bobcat
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Location: SW Portland

Re: Mud Springs and Jean Lake 6/26-6/27

Post by bobcat » June 29th, 2020, 4:37 pm

Mud Springs Trail begins at a post off of FR 4860-140 (these photos are a few years old) not far from the site of the Valley View Cabin:
Beginning of Mud Spring Trail, Road 4860-140.jpg
There's another post down the trail with a wilderness sign:
Wilderness sign, Mud Spring Trail.jpg
The upper section of the trail was easy to follow:
Snow on the Mud Spring Trail.jpg
Then you get into terminal blowdown, where I was basically balancing above the trail tread on downed logs:
Mud Spring Trail blowdown.jpg
Mud Spring should flow all year, but just a trickle perhaps by late summer; at this time of year the flow should be obvious:
Spring, Mud Spring Trail.jpg
The trail itself, to the junction with the Three Mile Trail, is totally unmaintained and abandoned. The last forest service ranger I had contact with in this jurisdiction had no idea of its condition.

christabrews
Posts: 21
Joined: August 12th, 2018, 10:07 am

Re: Mud Springs and Jean Lake 6/26-6/27

Post by christabrews » June 30th, 2020, 8:01 am

Interesting! So, do you think we did not actually find the site of Mud Springs? There was definitely no sign post on the road. We walked up the road quite a ways past where the trail is, in theory, looking for a sign of some kind, but there was nothing, so we relied on the GPS.

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bobcat
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Location: SW Portland

Re: Mud Springs and Jean Lake 6/26-6/27

Post by bobcat » June 30th, 2020, 11:03 am

I try to describe it in this writeup in the Field Guide:

https://www.oregonhikers.org/field_guid ... _Loop_Hike

Also in this trip report: viewtopic.php?f=8&t=15600

Your coordinates and mileage from the 140 spur (?) seem roughly accurate but maybe it's farther in than 0.3 miles and a little to the south of those coords. Was there any water? I didn't see a dry rocky "creek" bed. Water was just gushing out and spreading into several channels (early June), one of which had taken over the trail. I didn't have a GPS, so my map in the entry just follows the topo route. I seem to remember the trailhead on 140 is a lot closer to the 4860 junction than it is to Valley View Cabin (so the topo is a little inaccurate). Surprised the posts (about 20 yards apart) are both gone. The trail corridor off of 140 should be rather obvious though. You may have kept too far north and down the slope.

Apart from the area around Mud Spring itself, I was able to follow the tread (barely, with some circling and backtracking) to the Three Mile Trail, which was getting somewhat regular maintenance from the horse group that works in the Badger Creek Wilderness. My excursion was seven years ago now. With all the deadfall in that area, things could have changed quite a bit.

christabrews
Posts: 21
Joined: August 12th, 2018, 10:07 am

Re: Mud Springs and Jean Lake 6/26-6/27

Post by christabrews » June 30th, 2020, 12:08 pm

There was no water. The ground in the pit, where the spring should have been, was damp. But there was no water flowing.

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