Echo Basin - 7/26/08

This forum is used to share your experiences out on the trails.
Post Reply
justpeachy
Posts: 2969
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm
Location: Portland, OR
Contact:

Echo Basin - 7/26/08

Post by justpeachy » August 17th, 2008, 4:59 pm

The Echo Basin trail seems to be a little-known and seldom-visited hike near Santiam Pass. It's not very long but passes through a beautiful wildflower meadow. Greg and I did this after the Cone Peak hike earlier in the day. Here are Greg's photos from last year...I'm sure he'll get the photos from this trip uploaded soon. And here's his wildflower report.

The hike starts out climbing up an old overgrown logging road that is so steep that it seems hard to believe a logging truck - or any other vehicle, for that matter - could have handled the grade. Thick clumps of alder grow alongside the road/path, growing in weird arcs as seen below. Why they don't just grow straight up is beyond me. Maybe it has something to do with snow? (We saw several patches of snow alongside the trail on this hot July day. Seemed incredible that any could still be lingering!)

Image

The trail reaches a junction where you can either go right or left to complete the loop. We went right, climbing still more up through the trees. There is old growth here and the forest is very pretty.

Image


The trail then passes through a big field chock full of False Hellebore. There was A LOT of it.

Image


Finally we reached beautiful Echo Basin. What a lovely spot! It was full of wildflowers with several gurgling streams flowing down from above. It was a pretty and peaceful spot. Some of the wildflowers we saw:

Image

Image

Image


Echo Basin does indeed have an echo, although not a very significant one. We had fun testing it out. The view below shows part of the basin. I didn't have a wide enough lens to capture it all.

Image


Hiking back down on the other side of the loop, I got a shot of Greg in front of one of the huge Alaska Cedars for perspective. This area is unique because Alaska Cedars don't usually grow this far south.

Image

And back at the junction we made the knee-aching descent back down the old road to the car. The hike is only about 2.5 miles in total, with an elevation gain of about 600 feet. Very much worth it for the cool old growth and beautiful wildflowers.

Post Reply