Indian Point Loop Hike

TOTAL MILES: 8.0 miles
ELEVATION GAIN: 2700 ft
PACE: “Moderate” (2.0 mph)
DIFFICULTY RATING: Difficult due to distance and route.
ESTIMATED HIKING TIME: 4.5 hours
PERMITS: NW Forest Pass

CARPOOLING: RT mileage is 80 miles, give or take; we suggest a mileage donation of 10 cents/mile/person, or $8.00. Exact change makes it easier to divide among our drivers. No one will be turned away for an inability to contribute. Thanks!

Indian Point is a great conditioning hike that begins in the Herman Creek drainage area and takes you to a unique stone pinnacle overlooking the gorge. We Will begin this hike at the Herman Creek Campground trailhead. If the campground is gated for winter we will need to park outside of the gate which will add a short distance to this hike. We will follow the Herman Creek Trail for a short distance, and then take the Nick Eaton Ridge Trail as is climbs aggressively toward the ridgeline in a series of steep switchbacks. Along this route we will be treated with some great views of the gorge and the Herman Creek watershed. There is a good spot to take a snack break close to gaining to ridgeline if we choose. When we are close to the ridge we will take a connector trail north and intersect with the Gorton Creek Trail. Here we have the option, weather permitting, to traverse a short distance down the trail and drop to the stone lookout known as Indian Point. There is a narrow traverse out to the point that you will have as an option if the conditions are not icy. Great care needs to be taken on this narrow ridgeline due to considerable exposure. Even if you choose not to do the traverse to the point the views can be breathtaking if the weather cooperates. Following the stop at the Point, we will return to the Gorton Creek Trail and follow this all the way back down to the Herman Creek trail and then out to our vehicles.
NOTE: While this is a fairly aggressive route, we will set a moderate pace.

It is winter in the gorge and you should be prepared for winter hiking conditions including wind, rain or snow, and be prepared for trail conditions that are muddy or icy depending on the temperatures. I highly recommend that you carry trekking poles and Yaktrax or other traction devices on this hike.

Please note that there is a MANUAL waiting list for this hike. What this means is that if a spot opens up everyone on the waiting list will automatically receive an e-mail notifying them of the opening. The first person (whether on the waiting list or not) to RSVP gets the spot.

NO DOGS, please.

What to bring:
• Sturdy hiking boots/shoes with at least one change of socks
• Two or three light layers of clothing that can be adjusted or removed as necessary (NO COTTON!!!)
• Trekking Poles / Yaktrax / Rain gear
• Safety whistle, preferably on a cord around your neck (highly recommended)
• The 10 essentials*
• Lunch, snacks and plenty of water

*Navigation, Sun protection, Insulation, Illumination, First Aid, Fire, Repair Kit/Tools, Nutrition, Hydration, Emergency Shelter. For a more detailed description, check out “The Ten Essentials” on the Portland Hiking Meetup Group’s FILES page.

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  • Diane D

    Great views of the Gorge and quite a work out too

    1 · January 13, 2013

  • Jeff C.

    What a outstanding work out .Snow and lots snow lots fun . Good job steve...

    1 · January 12, 2013

  • Cynthia L.

    Great hike. Really nice people, amazing weather, couldn't ask for anything more. Thanks Steve!

    1 · January 12, 2013

  • Steve

    Great day on a great hike with great hikers! Beautiful weather...love being in the snow!

    January 12, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Awesome day. Did Steve order the weather. Good call on not going all the way down to the point. Good wayfinding.

    1 · January 12, 2013

  • Denise

    I agree, spikes! I wouldn't of felt as confident doing Hamilton yesterday in yak tracks. Spend the $, worth the safety

    1 · January 2, 2013

  • Rick L. J.

    Jeff this is short. We have one thats been going for 3 weeks now on NWW mu. Lol

    January 2, 2013

    • Jeff

      yeah! I got it confused with that one. :-D:-

      January 2, 2013

  • Jeff

    I might as well weigh in and make this the longest comment thread in MU history. If you plan to hike the Gorge in winter, any Gorge trails, buy a pair of Micro Spikes or Ice Trekkers. Yak Trax will work but they will break in one season. I speak from experience. They're light (good) but not very sturdy. I climbed Hamilton yesterday in MicroSpikes and they handled snow and ice equally well.

    January 2, 2013

  • Rick L. J.

    Micro spikes are the best in my opinion. I have yaks and think there worthless. @Steve friends hiked dog mtn Tuesday. Pictures showed about a foot of snow but easily wallked. Should be some on nick eaton.

    January 2, 2013

  • Udhay

    Hi Steve,

    Whats the best place to rent the trekking poles and Yaktrax or other traction devices

    January 2, 2013

    • Steve

      Valerie, I dont anticipate any treacherous trail conditions however due to the elevation we may run into sone snow at the higher elevations. I always prefer to be prepared for whatever the winter throws at us ;)

      January 2, 2013

    • Keith

      Yaktrax are cheap but not very durable and sometimes not effective. Look for better brands.

      January 2, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Thanks Steve. Looking forward to this! And Maggie, please bring my fuzzy little white hat!

    January 2, 2013

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