Old Roaring River Trail???

Discussions and Trip Reports for off-trail adventures and rediscovering lost trails
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forestkeeper
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Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by forestkeeper » August 13th, 2012, 11:31 am

Hello everyone,

I posted a thread of this trail last year but I didn't get a lot of feedback. But I hiked this trail Sunday before going up the Dry Ridge Trail.
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I kinda believe this is the old Roaring River Trail that was built back in the early 1900's by Alton Everest and his crew. It parallels the river pretty much as far as I got.

A lot of nice views though.
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There's plenty of old growth douglas fir stands and with the Roaring River on your left, you have the prehistoric river route to your right. This old river route is actually lightly and heavily covered in Pacific NW jungle brush and for a good 1/2 mile, it is depressed by about 5 feet from the actual elevation of the present trail system.

There is a lot of evidence of 20th century trail work. A large blowover that must be a good 40 to 50 yrs old has an axed out area on top with some axed out steps. And further up the trail, you can see where past blow overs were sawed to make the trail accessible.
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Trail is very overgrown in, I say, 95% of its entirety.
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Here is an old campsite. And by the looks of the surrounding ground vegetation, there hasn't been a tent here in a while, nor was there any evidence of any human activity in quite a long time.
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Then after about 3/4 of a mile, there were just too many blowovers to crawl over.
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Here's a nice swimming hole or fishing spot.
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I have been told by hikers on this thread, that the old trail built by the FS in the early 1900's, must have been the Dry Ridge Trail. But with the large number of switchbacks and the steepness of Dry Ridge, I can't fathom the men of that era building that kind of trail. And although Dry Ridge is a good circuit training trail, it is pretty boring with not very many sights to look at. A trail built along side the river would have gave ample water for the mule teams and pack horses as well as for the FS and CCC Labor Force of that day. And also, I haven't seen any agency do trail work, or build trails for that matter, just as an access trail for fishermen.

Any wisdom or answers are greatly appreciated. The Roaring River Tr is located next to the Roaring River Campground. Then travel east at the Dry Ridge TH. When the trail makes a sharp right, then upward trek, stay at the bottom and continue on the unmarked trail that parallels the river.
GPS Coordinates 45* 09.59 N 122* 06.69 W
Elevation 394'
USGS Map Grid 5 and 4 with above bearings

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BrianEdwards
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Re: Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by BrianEdwards » August 13th, 2012, 12:12 pm

How far up the river did this trail go back in the day?
Clackamas River Waterfall Project - 95 Documented, 18 to go.

pablo
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Re: Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by pablo » August 13th, 2012, 8:18 pm

ForestKeeper,

The only trail I know of for sure built by Alton Everest and his band of CCC workers was the #511 that paralleled the South Fork Roaring River starting from Frazer Mtn. Turnaround Camp and ending at the Roaring River. I looked for this trail (the #511) down to the Roaring River and was able to locate much of the southern part but lost it going north - you can read my report and the maps I collected of the area at this link: http://www.portlandhikers.org/forum/vie ... 10&t=3242.

There is no trail on the maps I have indicating official FS tread going east along the banks of the Roaring River from the Dry Ridge TH - what you are following is likely use trail as opposed to official and since abandoned FS trail - likely built and heavily used by fisherman, I'll bet. Not that hard to pack a chain saw from Roaring River Camp and don't underestimate the resourcefulness of a fisherman out to do some serious fishing. Further upstream on the Roaring River where the #506 comes down from the decommissioned Twin Springs campground is around where the #509 started and continued east along the north bank of the Roaring River to an exit point around Hambone Spring. That's the only official (and now abandoned) trail along the RR that I know of.

You might want to post this over at Trail Advocates, they may know something of the history of this trail.

--Paul
The future's uncertain and the end is always near.

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bobcat
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Re: Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by bobcat » August 13th, 2012, 8:56 pm

I agree with pablo: probably a use trail. By the way, pablo's trip down the South Fork to make a loop is epic! I've been part way down the other trail from Dry Ridge - seems in decent shape. If I remember, Trail Advocates doesn't have much to say about the #509 - the one that does go west - east along the river.

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forestkeeper
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Re: Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by forestkeeper » August 14th, 2012, 2:41 am

:) Much thanks Paul!!! What's the way of obtaining old maps of the Mt. Hood National Forest, particularly the Clackamas River District? I have been interested in the history of the NW since I was a boy. After reading Alton Everest's book last year, it's been kind of a personal legacy to not forget what the men and women, of past generations, have done working in the National and State Forests. It was such hard work and some were injured, some were killed. Imagine all the old forest workers whose names were never recorded, yet they put there heart, blood, sweat and tears and there lives into the trails and forests that we so much enjoy today. It wouldn't be right to take these things for granted. I can't wait to get on the 506.

Will

RobFromRedland
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Re: Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by RobFromRedland » August 14th, 2012, 5:19 am

ForestKeeper wrote::) Much thanks Paul!!! What's the way of obtaining old maps of the Mt. Hood National Forest, particularly the Clackamas River District? I have been interested in the history of the NW since I was a boy. After reading Alton Everest's book last year, it's been kind of a personal legacy to not forget what the men and women, of past generations, have done working in the National and State Forests. It was such hard work and some were injured, some were killed. Imagine all the old forest workers whose names were never recorded, yet they put there heart, blood, sweat and tears and there lives into the trails and forests that we so much enjoy today. It wouldn't be right to take these things for granted. I can't wait to get on the 506.

Will
Will:

There are old maps that come up for sale on eBay periodically, however I've never been able to find one that way. There are some old scans of maps on the trailadvocate.org site, and also a whole host of photos that pablo took of a bunch of old maps from the UofO library in Eugene. Those are a little harder to navigate, but if you can find the section you are looking for, are quite interesting. Pablo is one of the kings of the old maps.

I agree with Pablo - that is probably a user trail - I've never seen or heard any reference to any trail that far up the Roaring River. The only thing I've heard about the 509 is that there isn't anything left. It was probably built to help replant the area after the fires, and was never used much after that. Someday I would like to get down there and explore, but it is a steep and deep canyon. Going down is tough, but coming back up is even tougher. Beautiful country, though!
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention to arrive safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: WOW-What a ride!

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forestkeeper
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Re: Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by forestkeeper » August 14th, 2012, 9:14 am

:) Thanks Rob! What's the best way to get to the 509? Or would the best way to go be to bushwack that old user trail plotting a NE course to Indian Springs, then eventually come out at High Rock Lookout? Maybe this would be a nice new trail. It was pretty scenic on both sides of the user trail. Can you imagine a 15 to 20 mile Roaring River Scenic Trail? It would have to be another user trail. As a volunteer for the USFS, they (USFS) don't have a large interest in trails, trail maintenance, let alone building a new trail. They like volunteers like me to do most of the work so they don't have to pay you, yet they can still take all the credit for it. I'm pretty interested in the 509 though. I need to get some gaiters. My legs and shins got pretty beat up going through all that brush. :)

Will

RobFromRedland
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Re: Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by RobFromRedland » August 14th, 2012, 2:49 pm

I've never been on the 508/509 - just what I've heard from people. If my memory serves me, this trail on this map is a segment of the 509 trail. It follows the Roaring River, but it is way upstream of where you were. The only way to go down to it is cross country - I've heard the easiest way is to go cross country up near Hambone Butte - basically go down the hill from the 4610 road on the east end. You have to go round by way of high rocks, since the 4610 road is washed out (a big slide) about 20 miles up or so.

Here is the segment from the 1938 map that shows what I think is the 508 trail. It is the one on the north side of Roaring River. Like I said - I don't think anyone has ever found any remnants of it - the map shows it as a way trail (dotted line instead of dashed), which indicates it wasn't built to "normal" specs. Supposedly there are stands of old growth down there that escaped the fires and it is pretty easy cross country travel down by the river there. That is all second and third hand info, though, so take it for what it is worth. Like I said earlier, that canyon is STEEP and DEEP. If you do it, make sure you allow PLENTY of time to get back out.
509TrailSegment.JPG
Here is a snippet from a 1946 map that shows the trail as well:
1946Map-508Trail.jpg
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention to arrive safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: WOW-What a ride!

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forestkeeper
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Re: Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by forestkeeper » August 15th, 2012, 8:09 am

:D Thanks Rob! It's totally fun exploring lost trails and forgotten wilderness. I wonder if anything else might have survived the fires. ;) ie Sasquatch :roll:

pablo
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Re: Old Roaring River Trail???

Post by pablo » August 17th, 2012, 9:29 pm

RobFromRedland wrote:I've never been on the 508/509 - just what I've heard from people. [...]
Rob, I claim the route from the 4610 to the Roaring River you guys took looking for the Cougar Creek Trail is the 508. Look at the 1963 map - the 508 on that map mostly aligns with the route you guys traveled down to the RR. I think the starting point on the 4610 should be more to the east, like where the 789 comes in, than what the map shows but where else could the 508 be? What do you think?
508.jpg
--Paul
The future's uncertain and the end is always near.

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