Shellrock Mountain wagon road

Trip recommendations, current conditions, and other trail related Q&A
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Location: The Dalles

Shellrock Mountain wagon road

Post by lordgares » March 26th, 2021, 7:20 pm

Shellrock Mountain has been an area I have wanted to explore for a while, specifically the remnants of the old wagon road. Most of the TR I have seen describe access prior to when they put the historic highway through the area. I was wondering what the best access point would currently be to get there. Would I be better coming at it from the Wyeth side along the power line corridor or from the East by Summit Creek? Thanks! :D

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Don Nelsen
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Re: Shellrock Mountain wagon road

Post by Don Nelsen » March 26th, 2021, 8:15 pm

It's longer from the west via Wyeth and there are rock slides to traverse that resulted from the 2017 fires. From the east, there is a slide that is difficult to cross as you round The Backbone. I think the area may still be technically closed, too.

Were I to do it, knowing what I know about both routes, I'd take an ice axe for safety across the slide and come in from the east. Have your life insurance up to date though. A slip at the slide looks like it would be fatal. Of course, simply hiking the newly made road would solve the above slide problem but you would miss much of the old wagon road on the east of the slide.

edit; Then again, you could park off the freeway and hike up a short access road to the new route and hike west from there. I think it's MP 52.5 or maybe 53.5 - I don't remember for sure. Again, I think it's technically a closed area - but I haven't the faintest idea why.

"Everything works in the planning stage".

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Re: Shellrock Mountain wagon road

Post by cfm » March 27th, 2021, 5:06 am

I was up there in Novenber 2019. I came from the west, parked at Wyeth and rode my bike on the nice new path. I found a trail behind a gambion wall just west of a big viaduct. Traveling up to the wagon road was not a problem, but above it in the burn it got pretty sketchy.
wagon road.jpg
the wagon road
below the powerlines.jpg
trail cut below power line
via ferratta.jpg
via ferratta
looking down.jpg
looking down

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