Multnomah County Highpoint Trip Report

Date: June 28, 2004
Author: Adam Helman

I chose the Huckleberry Mountain Trail as proposed in Jeff Macey's trip report. As Jeff noted, one advantage of this route to Buck Peak is the all-paved driving approach, in total about thirty miles from Hood River along Interstate 84.

I found this to be a "classic" hike - good views, no access issues, no bushwhacking (but see below regarding the Buck Peak Summit Trail), and a sense of accomplishment once on-top.

As I neared Lost Lake by auto I found that the Jones Creek Road was inexplicably blocked by a delapidated gate about one mile north of the desired trailhead. Parking my car, I investigated by walking past the gate and found that somebody had set up an elaborate set of tents right in-the-middle of the road, with a huge berm of sand and conifer branches blocking further progress along the road, on-foot or otherwise.

Undaunted, I drove back north, then west and south to a parking lot perhaps 100 meters from the lake shore. With daypack shouldered, I ended up walking down a footpath, for about one mile south, passing numerous shore campsites until I exited the camping area on its south end, arriving at a road junction at NAD27 UTM coordinates (593016 E, 5036937 N).

I walked the road leading southwest about one thousand feet to find the Huckleberry Mountain Trail trailhead on my right (north) side at NAD27 UTM coordinates (592752 E, 5036729 N).

The hike is as Jeff Macey describes. It is useful to locate the Buck Peak Summit Trail as it begins life along the Pacific Crest Trail at the point where the PCT passes by the south ridge of Buck Peak. My GPS unit suggested that the air distance at this junction to Buck Peak is 400 meters (about 1,300 feet = 1/4-mile), with about 250 feet of elevation gain to summit. From this PCT/Summit Trail junction, the somewhat overgrown summit trail leads, after ten to twelve minutes, to the top of Buck Peak. The last one-half of the trail has a few switchbacks and is particularly annoying to follow.

I surmise that the additional mile each-way prior to reaching the Huckleberry Mountain Trail may be avoided by entering the Lost Lake area by driving Jones Creek Road from the south, rather than approaching as I did from the northeast.

I started uptrail at 9:06 a.m. and returned at 2:04 p.m. - including a major summit siesta with a grand view of Mount Hood. The additional two miles on footpath/road through the camping area made for a thirteen mile round trip.

I took some photographs along the hike, one of which I am particularly pleased with.

Note: Unlike Jeff M, I did not pay a fee, $6 or otherwise.