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Difference between revisions of "Tumala Mountain Hike"

From Oregon Hikers Field Guide

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[[Image:SquawMountainView.jpg|300px|thumb|The view to Mount Hood from Squaw Mountain ''(Tom Kloster)'']]
[[Image:SquawMountainView.jpg|300px|thumb|The view to Mount Hood from Squaw Mountain ''(Tom Kloster)'']]
* Start Point: [[Twin Springs Trailhead]]
{{Start point|Twin Springs Trailhead}}
* End Point: [[Squaw Mountain]]
* End Point: [[Squaw Mountain]]
* Trail Log: [[Squaw Mountain Hike/Log|Trail Log]]
* Trail Log: [[Squaw Mountain Hike/Log|Trail Log]]

Revision as of 22:21, 23 March 2007

Trailside view of the Squaw Meadows basin (Tom Kloster)
Old stairsteps are all that remain from the former Squaw Mountain lookout (Tom Kloster)
The view to Mount Hood from Squaw Mountain (Tom Kloster)
  • Start point: Twin Springs TrailheadRoad.JPG
  • End Point: Squaw Mountain
  • Trail Log: Trail Log
  • Hike Type: Out and Back
  • Distance: 4.0 miles round-trip
  • Elevation gain: 1000 feet
  • High Point: 4,770 feet
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Seasons: Early Summer through Fall
  • Family Friendly: Yes
  • Backpackable: Yes - connects to network of Salmon-Huckleberry trails
  • Crowded: Never



For anyone seeking a solitude in close proximity to Portland, the lightly traveled Squaw Mountain trail is the perfect trip. The hike features views of the scenic Squaw Lakes basin and the summit views from Squaw Mountain are expansive. This is also a good hike for children who are building their hiking skills, with just enough challenge to make the summit a rewarding goal.

From the trailhead, head into the woods, and immediately reach a sign marking the Salmon-Huckleberry Wilderness boundary. Turn left here on the Plaza Trail (no. 783) and begin short climb up a rocky section of trail that rounds a ridge, then traverses across the forested upper slopes of the vast Eagle Creek valley.

Soon, the trail passes through a saddle, and continues to drop to a pair of open scree slopes at 0.5 mile, with fine views of the glacial valley that holds Squaw Lakes and meadows, below. Much of the valley was a private inholding acquired from a cattle company by the Nature Conservancy in the 1980s, and has since been restored from the heavy grazing that once occurred here. Even from these heights, its common to hear the chorus of thousands of frogs in the meadows and lakes below as you pass through this section of trail. Squaw Mountain is the prominent high point in the long ridge above the valley.

Next, the route re-enters open woods as it drops to a second saddle, and then begins climbing to a series of four switchbacks before reaching a junction with the Old Baldy Trail (no. 502) on the north shoulder of Squaw Mountain at the 1.5 mile mark. The route turns left here (a sign points to Squaw Mountain) and begins a half mile ascent of the summit. Just short of the top, the trail reaches the old dirt access road that once served a fire lookout. Turn left and follow the road a few yards to a couple of short paths that reach the summit.

Though the lookout is gone, the concrete steps still remain, complete with a “welcome” message for visitors. From the rocky summit, the view includes Mount Hood and Mount Jefferson, as well as a glimpse of the little-known Roaring River backcountry, marked by the Signal Buttes, to the east. Be sure to explore the summit ridge, which has several viewpoints, and nice wildflower displays in early summer.



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Oregon Hikers Field Guide is built as a collaborative effort by its user community. While we make every effort to fact-check, information found here should be considered anecdotal. You should cross-check against other references before planning a hike. Trail routing and conditions are subject to change. Please contact us if you notice errors on this page.

Hiking is a potentially risky activity, and the entire risk for users of this field guide is assumed by the user, and in no event shall Trailkeepers of Oregon be liable for any injury or damages suffered as a result of relying on content in this field guide. All content posted on the field guide becomes the property of Trailkeepers of Oregon, and may not be used without permission.