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Benson Plateau via Wahtum Lake - Overnight Backpack Trip

Benson Plateau is a must see for all Gorge-lovers. It’s a 1x2 mile, high altitude plateau that stands out as a prominent feature in the Columbia River Gorge geology. This trip has been on my must-do list for some time, so let’s go check it out together. I have chosen this particular route so this trip is accessible to strong beginners.

We’ll meet up at Gateway Transit Center and head to Wahtum Lake via Hood River. From Wahtum Lake, we will jump on the Pacific Crest Trail 2000. After a couple of miles, we will reach the junction with Chinidere Mountain. We’ll drop our packs and take the approximate 200 foot elevation hike up to the top to catch the views. After we get back down to the PCT, we’ll continue for a few more miles past the junction with Trail 434 before hitting the final climb to the edge of the plateau on our way to our destination at Benson Camp. We’ll spend the night at Benson Camp and head out the same way we came in.

In order to assure we are all properly prepared for a safe and fun trip, there is a Mandatory Pre-hike Meeting on Wednesday 7/17/13, 7:00 PM, Lucky Lab, 915 SE Hawthorne Blvd in Portland. I’m afraid if you are signed up for the trip and are not at the pre-hike meeting, you are considered a no-show for the trip. If you’re going to be late, you need to call me at[masked]-6065. Team safety is our top priority.

RSVP’s close when the pre-hike meeting starts. If you are on the waiting list and want to roll the dice, come to the pre-hike meeting. If there is an open spot, it’s yours first come first served.

• Dates: Saturday 7/20/2013 to Sunday 7/21/13.
• Meet Up: Gateway Transit Center, 8:00AM, Saturday 7/20/13.
• Total 2-day distance: about 14 miles.
• Elevation [Starting, Ending, Highest, Overall Gain]: 3960’, 4000’, 4340’, About 1000’
• Overall Difficulty per Rating Chart [1-6]: [2] Moderate to almost [3] Challenging.
• USGS Topo Maps: CARSON, WAHTUM LAKE
• Weather Forecast: [will update at pre-hike meeting]
• Dogs: Yes. Please bring a leash and see our Dog Policy on our Files page. Remember, your dog is a hiker too. Don’t forget to bring their essential equipment also. Just ask if you are not sure.
• Permits: Forest Pass for each vehicle at Wahtum Lake.
• Deposit: $15 deposit will be required as earnest money to discourage last-minute cancellations. Please be sure to read the refund policy. Remember, missing the pre-hike meeting is the same as missing the hike.
• $$$: Bring money with you if you would like to stop on the way home for a group dinner.
• Carpooling: We recommend a 10 cents/mile/person reimbursement to all carpool drivers to cover cost of gas. Total round trip driving distance for our drivers will be about 180 miles or $18 bucks per non-driving person. I will collect at the meetup location. Exact change is appreciated. BTW, if you cannot pay, you will not be turned away! Contact me before the meetup if this is the case.

Need to Bring:
• Backpack
• Sleeping bag
• Sleeping pad or air mattress
• One Breakfast, two lunches, one dinner, Trail Snacks
• Two liters of water (If a hot day, consider bringing more)
• Water resistant hiking boots/shoes
• Whistle around your neck for communication.
• A water-resistant hat
• Rain suit, poncho, or equivalent
• Two or three light layers of clothing that can be adjusted or removed as necessary
• Sunglasses
• Flashlight or headlamp
• First aid kit
• Knife
• Lighter
• Insect repellent
• Cooking and eating utensils
• Sun Screen
• Personal Identification
• Pack Cover
• Toilet Paper and Other Toiletry Items
• Spare Socks and Undies
• Knife
• Lighter

Items we can share as required:
• Water filters
• Tents
• Stove and fuel
• Rope (to hang food)
• Saw
• Forest Pass (if you have one)

Optional Items:
• Trekking poles
• Camera
• Sitting Pad
• Pillow

Leader will bring:
• Maps
• GPS
• Driving Instructions
• Fire Starters
• Witty banter

Note: If there are folks on the waiting list and a spot opens up, everyone on the wait list will get an email. The first person who RSVPs YES gets the spot.

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  • Emily

    Loved this past weekend! I feel like I can head out backpacking more comfortably now. It was so great to meet everyone.

    July 23, 2013

  • Natasha

    My weekend was fantastic because all of you!!! Thank you for good trip and good company. :) I am ready to go again :)

    July 22, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    I emailed each of you asking about the individual pictures. If you did not see it it is probably in your Junk Mail. I only got 2 responses. I need to know if you want your pictures put on meetup here or emailed direct. If you want them direct click my name and then click to email me and let me know your preference. I have some great pictures NOT uploaded yet to the site with just each of you in them

    July 22, 2013

  • David N.

    A fantastic trip!

    1 · July 22, 2013

  • Randy S.

    Man, I really loved this trip! I definitely want to go back and I wish I could take this entire team with me. What a fun group. Thank you all for making this such a great trip.

    1 · July 22, 2013

  • Randy S.

    Check it out! We made the front page!!

    July 22, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Loved the trip especially the company who attended. Difficult for me but accomplished it with a good rate of hiking.

    July 21, 2013

  • Patty

    What a great trip super nice people, spectacular views, awesome organizer.

    July 21, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Had such a great time!! Beautiful hikes!! Great job Randy! So nice meeting everyone!

    July 21, 2013

  • Randy S.

    Great pre-hike meeting! Thanks everyone for coming. I just emailed everyone with a copy of the hike map and emergency contact information for this trip. I also posted a copy of the hike map to the files page at: MORE -> FILES -> WAHTUM LAKE TO BENSON PLATEAU MAP.jpg. See you all Saturday. Randy

    1 · July 17, 2013

  • Randy S.

    YES! We have a great team here. Can't wait to meet you guys tomorrow at the Lucky Lab. I'll be the one with the large Topo map in front of me. See you then. Randy

    July 16, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Yay!!! Excited!!

      July 16, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Randy, are you the backpacking buddy of Ed Hayes? Just went on the Marmot Pass trip with him and had soooooo much fun. He mentioned he goes on a lot of trips with a 50-ish man named Randy. I just bought a bunch of dried food and am very much looking forward to the trip.

    July 4, 2013

    • Randy S.

      As a matter of fact, Ed and I do know each other and have done many backpacking trips together - with more planned this season. I'm looking forward to this trip also. Benson has been on my list for some time and feel lucky to have all you to share the adventure with. I expect it to be a great trip. See you and eveyone else at the pre-hike meeting! Cheers. Randy

      July 5, 2013

    • Ed H.

      Yes, Michelle, this man is the one and only famous Randy I backpack with :) Enjoy this weekend and see you both another time!

      July 10, 2013

  • Brian

    Hey Randy, I'd love to get in on this but going to a wedding that weekend. It'd be good to hike with you again. I have my eye on Goat Rocks in September..........

    July 8, 2013

    • Randy S.

      Would be great to have you on a trip. It's been a long time. Hopefully when we're able to hook up again Mark can make it too. Have a fun time at the wedding. Is it YOUR wedding? LOL. I'll contact you on Facebook about Goat Rocks. Never been there but would love to go if you have a space for me. Later...

      July 9, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Wed I work till 7 but may be able to get off early. I will contact number provided.

    July 8, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Just the Tatiane's comment and reply to her comment. I will make sure I'm there on wed. Thanks!

      July 8, 2013

  • Natasha

    Looking forward for this hike :)

    July 3, 2013

8 went

  • Randy S.
    Hike Leader, Assistant Organizer,
    Event Host
  • David N.
    Hike Leader, Assistant Organizer
  • A former member
  • A former member
  • A former member

Your organizer's refund policy for Benson Plateau via Wahtum Lake - Overnight Backpack Trip

Additional notes: Refund will be offered if the member attends the event, the event is cancelled or rescheduled, or if the member cancels prior to the pre-hike meeting.

Payments you make go to the organizer, not to Meetup. You must make refund requests to the organizer.

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