fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

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Chip Down
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fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by Chip Down » June 30th, 2020, 9:42 am

I had never been to TDH Mtn in the snowless season, nor had I ever explored the remnant of old highway we all see when coming down US26 through the Laurel Hill cut. Yesterday I decided to park at the tiny loud Laurel Hill trailhead, walk up the old Barlow Road trail, to Yocum Falls, up the old Mirror Lake trail until it meets the new section, past Mirror Lake, then up to TDH, and walk the old highway on my return down Laurel Hill.

Exploring Laurel Hill was fun. I like seeing old stuff, like an old highway nearly covered in moss. Because the old highway takes a big S curve, and because US26 curves as well, I found myself always disoriented. I'd hear traffic off to my right, and wonder how that was possible (or vice versa).

Weather was worse than expected. Forecast said spotty fog, but it was a persistent drizzle. I nook-and-crannied Laurel Hill waiting for weather to improve, then set off for the old Mirror Lake trailhead. Well drat, apparently they took out the bridge when they decommissioned that TH. That's a shame. Laurel Hill makes for a longer hike to Mirror Lake, but I think it's a better route (although admittedly I haven't tried that horrible new Mirror Lake TH).

I poked around looking for a way across, but of course I was getting drenched in the saturated brush. I didn't want to get to Mirror Lake that bad, especially knowing I'd have a miserable time up on Tom, and then have to repeat the awful route back down.

In the picture below, Laurel Hill TH is at upper left. The big S turn is the old highway. Barlow trail dumps into the old highway right about where the old highway meets US26. At lower right, notice google still shows an old image with cars parked at the old Mirror Lake TH.

If you're curious about Laurel Hill, wy'east blog has a nice set of pictures and historical description.
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TwoPaw
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Re: fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by TwoPaw » June 30th, 2020, 12:48 pm

I didn't know about that S-curve. I wonder how long a trip from PDX to Government Camp used to take. Maybe the same time as today taking into account modern congestion. I'll have to poke around there someday; seem to be a number of FG hikes to do.

I doubt anybody hikes the actual T/D/H trail anymore - it's too crowded (apologies to YB).

justpeachy
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Re: fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by justpeachy » June 30th, 2020, 6:44 pm

I love poking around areas with some history. This is a picture of that old section of highway I took way back in 2006:

Image

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Guy
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Re: fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by Guy » June 30th, 2020, 8:36 pm

I had the same thought & almost pulled off 26 last week just to poke my head over the guard rail to see if the bridge was still there but I was out voted in the interests of highway safety! Thanks for answering my question!

There a bits of the old highway on the other side of 26 too but they covered a whole bunch of that with debris when they were doing the new 26 widening project.
hiking log & photos.
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OregonSurveyor
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Re: fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by OregonSurveyor » June 30th, 2020, 9:25 pm

ODOT intentionally removed the old footbridge so people wouldn’t be tempted to park along the highway shoulder. Enforcement was an issue for the first six months and there was one “rescue” of a family who got stuck/injured crossing where the bridge had been.
I haven’t seen too many cars in that “NO PARKING” section these last couple of months.
Jerry King
Oregon Land Surveyor (Retired)
SAR Volunteer - CCSAR (Clackamas County Sheriff)

Webfoot
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Re: fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by Webfoot » July 1st, 2020, 5:31 am

Guy wrote:
June 30th, 2020, 8:36 pm
There a bits of the old highway on the other side of 26 too but they covered a whole bunch of that with debris when they were doing the new 26 widening project.
Which part was covered? I walked the old road on the north side from Little Zigzag TH toward Laurel Hill TH and it goes right up to the highway fence. On the east side from Glacier View TH I walked to the highway road cut, and although the pavement of the old road had been pointlessly torn up it hadn't been blocked.

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Guy
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Re: fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by Guy » July 1st, 2020, 6:27 am

Webfoot wrote:
July 1st, 2020, 5:31 am
Which part was covered? I walked the old road on the north side from Little Zigzag TH toward Laurel Hill TH and it goes right up to the highway fence. On the east side from Glacier View TH I walked to the highway road cut, and although the pavement of the old road had been pointlessly torn up it hadn't been blocked.
Well maybe they cleared it all off but we walked all that when the 26 repaving / widening was going on and all the old asphalt was being dumped on the old road.
hiking log & photos.
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Peabody
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Re: fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by Peabody » July 1st, 2020, 12:30 pm

justpeachy wrote:
June 30th, 2020, 6:44 pm
I love poking around areas with some history. This is a picture of that old section of highway I took way back in 2006:
I haven't posted here in awhile, so this must be important right?

Question: How the hell do you find a 14 year old hiking picture of specific area? Do tell us your photo organization secret.
"I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve the world and a desire to enjoy the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.”
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retired jerry
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Re: fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by retired jerry » July 1st, 2020, 12:37 pm

"I haven't posted here in awhile"

you must have fallen off the peabody scale of apathy :)

Webfoot
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Re: fail tale: long historic route to Tom/Dick/Harry

Post by Webfoot » July 1st, 2020, 2:46 pm

Peabody wrote:
July 1st, 2020, 12:30 pm
I haven't posted here in awhile, so this must be important right?

Question: How the hell do you find a 14 year old hiking picture of specific area? Do tell us your photo organization secret.
Welcome back!

I don't know how she did it but I keep a map of pins with places I've been and when I was there. I would then search for photos with EXIF dates that matched.

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