Hike 10 – Peter Skene Ogden Trail

Posted by on Oct 2, 2012 in Blog, The Hikes | 0 comments

Hike 10 – Peter Skene Ogden Trail

With visions of kaleidoscopic colors and other-worldly-esque textures still on my mind from my jaunt around Paulina Lake two weeks ago (Hike#9), I wanted to go back and explore more of the dozens of miles of trails found in the Newberry National Volcanic Monument.

With a hiking partner in tow, we decided on hitting a section of the Peter Skene Ogden National Scenic Trail. Named after one of the great explorers of the West (who also has Ogden, Utah named in his honor), the trail runs nine miles along the northern side of Paulina Creek, from Ogden Group Camp Trailhead to the shores of Paulina Lake.

There are a few options for shorter hikes if you don’t have time to do the entire 18-mile (round trip) hike. The trail runs on the north side of Paulina Creek with only a couple of spots to cross without getting your feet wet. We headed up Highway 21 – the main access road to Newberry Crater – and parked at the 10-Mile Snow Park lot. From there, we hiked about a mile to one of two footbridges that cross the creek and join the Ogden Trail.

TIP: About 1/4 mile from the 10-Mile Snow Park lot, there’s an unmarked trail heading west (left) off of the forest road. Take this single-track trail instead of the forestry roads. It offers more natural surroundings without seeing the power lines that stretch along the forestry road running parallel on the ridge to the north. Eventually, it will gradually climb and cross the fire road, taking you down to the creek/footbridge.

After crossing the footbridge, you’ll meet up with the Ogden Trail. But before trekking east the 3+ miles up to Paulina Lake, take a short detour down stream to check out the waterfalls. You should hear them from the footbridge.

The Ogden Trail hugs Paulina Creek as close as possible, but sometimes skirts away when the creek shoots down narrow parts of the canyon. I found myself drawn back to views of the creek even when the trail did not. I spotted some great secluded watering holes that I plan on immersing myself in next year when the weather is warmer.

Scroll down for photos.

Resources:

  1. Paulina Creek Falls – Waterfalls of the Pacific Northwest
  2. Peter Skene Ogden National Scenic Trail
  3. Wikipedia: Peter Skene Ogden

Trip Stats:

  • Date of hike: October 2, 2012
  • Location: 15 miles east of La Pine, Oregon
  • Length: 8.8 miles

This map was made with the data my GPS captured on the hike.
For a more detailed trip report map, check this out.

Photos:

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The trailhead at 10-Mile Snow Park is all set for winter, with helpful info for snowmobilers.

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About a mile from the 10-Mile Snow Park lot, we reached the footbridge over Paulina Creek and the Ogden Trail.

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These waterfalls are about 100 yards down stream from the footbridge.

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Although most of the wildflowers have faded and fallen off, there is still some color here in the woods. This is a rose hip, the fruit of a Woods’ Rose – Rosa woodsii, var. ultramontana. The outer flesh is supposedly edible, but not the center. The hairs found in the center of this fruit are the main ingredient for itching powder.

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The trail hugs Paulina Creek for a while, but in some areas like this, we had to bushwhack a few yards off trail to peer into the canyon.

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As you near Paulina Falls, the trail separates from the creek and into this forest of large toothpicks. Keep your eye on a well-defined trail heading off to the right (south). It will take you a few hundred yards to the Paulina Creek Falls overlook.

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The view of Paulina Falls from the north side of Paulina Creek. Notice the group of people on the south side viewpoint (upper right).

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We found a nice picnic spot just above the falls. From here, it is a 1/4 mile hike up to Paulina Lake.

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Back at the 10-Mile Snow Park lot. The signs said to park in the center, so that’s what I did!