Hike Opal Creek

A 7.1-mile loop extends upriver to Opal Pool and Jawbone Flats, a Depression-era mining camp. A Northwest Forest Pass is required to park here. The pass costs $5 per day or $30 per season.

Directions: From Interstate 5 exit 253 in Salem, drive on East Santiam Highway 22 for 23 miles to Mehama's second flashing yellow light. Opposite the Swiss Village Restaurant, turn left on Little North Fork Road for 15 paved miles and an additional 1.3 miles of gravel. At a fork, veer left on Road 2209. Then drive 4.2 miles to the locked gate. Residents of Jawbone Flats are allowed to drive the dirt road ahead; others must park and walk in.

Leashed dogs are ok.
According to Google, OpalCreek trailhead is located 42 miles and an hour from Salem. Please bring some cash to pay drivers for gas.

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  • A former member
    A former member

    Nice, fairly easy hike. Fun group!

    October 7, 2013

  • Carla

    Thanks everyone for making it such a great hike.

    1 · October 6, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Glad you made it out! We were a little worried leaving without seeing you at the end. Hope you're not too bruised from the mine car dump!

      October 6, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Had a great time on the hike with everyone...hope to see everyone again on a next meet up!

    2 · October 6, 2013

  • Rhonda C.

    What a wonderrful day with an AWESOME group of people! Thank you all so much for welcoming me so warmly! Can't wait to see everyone again on a future outting... =)

    2 · October 5, 2013

  • Diana J.

    Beautiful day with great conversation!

    1 · October 5, 2013

  • Diana J.

    Beautiful day with great conversation! Thank you Carla! Look forward to our next hiking adventure!

    1 · October 5, 2013

  • Jean F.

    Thanks for a great hike, beautiful day, and good company. For any one you who asked our hiking meetup in Newport is www.meetup.com/Newport-Ramblers

    3 · October 5, 2013

  • Jennifer C.

    Meeting friends from Corvallis. Darlene and I will meet you at the trail head.

    October 5, 2013

  • Kim

    I have a bad cold :-( I was hoping I'd feel better this morning, sorry for the late notice.

    October 5, 2013

  • Don

    Have a cold :(

    October 4, 2013

  • Curtis

    Anyone interested in going to the nearby hot springs for an evening soak? (The hike isn't going to take that long, I'm guessing we'd be done by 3 or 4 pm) If a few folks are up for the hot springs we could all go in one car. Let me know. I hope this road / trail has a chance to dry out. Heard it has been super muddy up there with all the rain, and cars use this trail to get in and out of Jawbone flats.

    October 1, 2013

    • Rhonda C.

      Hi Curtis, You and your pooch are more than welcome to ride with us. My friend drives an SUV, so plenty of room for the two of you. Which hot springs are we going to? We're looking for ward to it almost as much as the hike! :-)

      October 3, 2013

    • Curtis

      Thanks! There are two hot spring options I can run by you tomorrow. One is a rustic resort (BHS), the other are just some old tubs by a river. Both just past Detroit.

      October 4, 2013

  • A

    Please rate hike: easy, mod, difficult?

    September 26, 2013

    • Rhonda C.

      You guys do fork off, cross the creek and hike the trail through the woods either going or coming; I hope?

      October 3, 2013

    • Curtis

      I would guess so but I don't know as I am not leading this one. Could depend how bad the mud is. I would be ok leading a slower group that would want to stop and take pictures every so often.

      October 4, 2013

  • Bobbi

    I've been sick and still have a bad cough. Maybe next time

    October 4, 2013

  • Jean F.

    ok, read the rest of the messages and figured out where the meeting spot is. Will meet at the meeting spot in Salem

    October 4, 2013

  • Jean F.

    There are no good directions about how to join the group at the meetup spot on Airport Rd. in Salem I will be coming up 5 and then west on 22. Would I take a right on Airport Rd from 22? The map link does not work from the meetup.

    October 4, 2013

  • Susan

    This also is my first meetup event, we will meet you at the gate, me and 3 friends.

    October 3, 2013

  • Elaine Kevorkian I.

    I am SO bummed :( I now have to work Saturday, so am unable to go. Boo hoo!!!

    October 3, 2013

  • Curtis

    Looks like this hike needs some male representation, & I will be bringing my dog as well. Anyone else bringing their dog? Would like to carpool.

    September 28, 2013

    • Curtis

      I see two other guys are coming now but on the email it showed all women.

      September 28, 2013

    • Elaine Kevorkian I.

      Yeah, I saw that too, Curtis :)

      October 3, 2013

  • Rhonda C.

    This will be my first meet up event - really looking forward to it! I will be brining a friend from work, but we have room for two additional passengers if anyone needs a ride. Were there any takers to Curtis' suggestion of an evening hot springs soak? Sounds like a fabulous way to end the day.... :-)

    October 2, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    My husband and I just signed up. We have a truck with a backseat and can haul two other people comfortably. We don't have a dog but would be willing to transport a dog in the bed of the truck if that's something you and your dog are accustomed to. (When we had a dog he never road in the bed of a truck, so we're not sure if that's a training issue or whatever.) Anyway, happy to meet up with some other locals. Hope the weather is half-way decent at least. :-)

    September 29, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      Yes! Four adults fit comfortably in the truck.

      October 2, 2013

    • Tony C.

      Well, blast it, life is going to get in the way, so I have to back out of the trip. Thanks a ton for the offer to drive, I really do appreciate it. I hope everyone has a fun and safe trip!

      1 · October 2, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Okay, so it looks like Sasha & Tony will be riding with my husband Ben and I. We've not done any of these meet-ups before, but we're looking forward it! See you all Saturday.

    October 2, 2013

  • Chatchay Ramone de la M.

    I found a hike closer to home. I have to hiked there before and will open my spot. Be safe and have fun. Thanks.

    October 2, 2013

    • Nancy

      Oh, Chatchay! Was looking forward to seeing you! Another time... :)

      1 · October 2, 2013

    • Chatchay Ramone de la M.

      I know Nancy. Next time. ;)

      1 · October 2, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Hi Guys, Anyone have room in their car for one more? I would love to join in on this hike, my car won't make it up there...though I can share my Forest Pass!!!

    September 30, 2013

    • Curtis

      Are you dog friendly? Interested in the later return with possible hot springs soak?

      October 1, 2013

    • A former member
      A former member

      I am dog friendly. Hot springs not sure, would like to get back after hike if possible!

      October 1, 2013

  • Christine

    Hi everyone! This will be my first meet up, looks like a good one! I've never been there, so I don't know what the roads are like and have a VW beetle; will it make it on the roads up there?

    October 1, 2013

    • Christine

      And I'm not sure where the meet up point is, I'm new to Oregon...anyone have an address or something close?

      October 1, 2013

    • Curtis

      VW Beetle will make it. No 4WD stuff. Just ordinary mud. Meeting spot doesn't show on link, but it is about a 1/3 mile north of Mission st on the east side of Airport rd.

      October 1, 2013

  • Rhonda C.

    Hi! This will be my first time participating with your Meet Up group. I'm really looking forward to meeting and enjoying the hike with everyone. (I've been to Opal Creek on numerous occasions, but never tire of it...)

    September 30, 2013

  • Chatchay Ramone de la M.

    What time do you think you will be at the Trailhead? I want to meet you guy there. Thanks.

    September 27, 2013

  • Chatchay Ramone de la M.

    I have been there before. Beautiful area.

    September 27, 2013

  • Elaine Kevorkian I.

    OMG!!!!!!!! I kept thinking the hike was Saturday TOMORROW!!! Oh man, I guess my head cold is worse than I thought :)......sorry, gals.... :)

    September 27, 2013

  • Elaine Kevorkian I.

    Ladies, I have been feeling ill today (sneezing, stuffy head), so I don't think I will be going tmrw. after all. I'm very disappointed as I've been looking forward to going to Opal Creek!!
    If, I am feeling better by Sat. morning, would it be inconvenient to just show up and get a ride?? Also, how difficult is the hike? "A" msgd. below to rate the hike.....

    September 27, 2013

  • Elaine Kevorkian I.

    Ladies, since there only 3 of us signed up so far, I'm assuming we will all go in one car? I am happy to offer mine since I have a van, but would appreciate help with gas & the day pass fee :)
    Since I haven't been on one hike so far, can someone fill me in on what I might need to bring on the hike? Thanks ahead :)

    September 25, 2013

    • Elaine Kevorkian I.

      Okay, thanks! :) I haven't been hiking in a long time, but really looking forward to Saturday. I think it's supposed to be rainy, though :(

      September 26, 2013

    • Elaine Kevorkian I.

      Good question, A!!!

      September 27, 2013

  • Molly

    Next time!

    September 24, 2013

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