What we're about

This group is for anyone interested in backpacking, camping, hiking, and wilderness adventures. All skill levels are welcome, from the true day-hiker beginner ready to make the very first leap into backpacking on a beginner-friendly overnight trip, to individuals wanting to do nice 1- and 2-night trips with moderate mileages, to the well-seasoned and traveled backpacker wanting to crush 18+ mile days on a multi-day trip. That said, not every trip will be suited for beginners. Any specific considerations for a given trip will be clearly disclosed in each and every trip write-up.

In this group, we will definitely be seeking out the roads less traveled - wilderness over development. That simply means that we will be focusing on getting into areas that aren’t always the most traveled. This is good because we get to see things that others typically will not. This can be frustrating as well because there is not always a way to know trail conditions (blow-downs, snow, overgrowth, etc.) in advance. While it is my belief that there is a certain beauty in not knowing everything ahead of time, I do pride myself in trying to assemble as much information for a given trip ahead of time.

My goal for this group is to bring together people who already get out, people who want to get out more, and people who haven’t ever gotten out, and facilitate connection and relationship with the land. Through all of our adventures, we will build this relationship with the land.

While backpacking will be the focus, we are going to be hosting and having a variety of other outdoor-based events as well. Everything from car camping in beautiful places and local in-town gatherings, to day hikes, to bonfires in the snow, snowshoeing as well. Additional activities are welcome too. Suggestions are always welcome. Keep in mind that I am only one person, and much of this will be evolving as the group does. I do not plan to run each and every trip the group hosts, eventually, I would like to have an additional trip and event organizers.

If you want to bring some alcohol and booze it up a bit. Great! Just make sure and share!! Want to bring your pups along? Absolutely! But they will be YOUR responsibility. If they cannot behave and be off-leash, you will have them on-leash. If they cannot get along with other dogs and/or bark at any and everything around? I’m leaning more to no. Want to bring your kids along? Well, this just depends on the specific trip and the parenting style. Meaning that campfire conversation isn’t always PG13. I do not go out to be censored, nor do I go out to censor others. Additionally, not every trip, arguably most trips, will not be kid-friendly due to pace, distance, the aggressiveness of terrain, or other factors.

****PLEASE NOTE**** Backpacking and associated outdoor activities are not without risk. While every single attempt will be made to keep the safety of our members a top priority while drawing on a breadth of experience that has been gathered over nearly 8,000 cumulative miles to date, I cannot guarantee your safety. The fact is, it is ‘safer’ to stay at home on the couch in the comfort of your own home without ever, ever leaving the house. That’s if you discount the health risks of an inactive and sedentary lifestyle. It has been my experience that there are far, far, far more ways to die in a city situation (including something as mundane as crossing the street while walking to a store) than there are in the wild, the truth is that people can die in the wild. Again, this is not intended to scare anyone. This is simply fact.

We will do everything we can to be and stay safe.

Upcoming events (5)

Paulina Lake Loop Trail 7.5 miles + Mystery Hotsprings

Paulina Lake Loop Trail is a 7.5-mile moderately trafficked loop trail located near La Pine, Oregon that features a lake and is good for all skill levels. The trail offers a number of activity options and is best used from April until October. Dogs are also able to use this trail but must be kept on a leash. This is an easy nearly flat hike. There are just a few uphills. The views of the lake and the caldera are great. Wait and see! Weather calls for a high of 62 with sunny skies. But I will update everyone Saturday. What to bring? Plenty of water, snacks, a lunch. I'll carry a first aid kit for the group. Thinking a light jacket or a puffy if it gets breezy. Hiking poles not necessary for this hike. Now, I've lived here for 10 years, and have done this loop half a dozen times, but I've never seen the hot springs. Maybe someone who's been there before will sign up for this event and show me where it is. Takes an hour to get down there. I need two drivers to volunteer their vehicles. Wearing masks while carpooling is mandatory. End time is approximate.

Three Fingered Jack Loop - 2 nts.

Tom's house

We depart from Jack Lake TH. Camp #1 at Koko Lake Camp #2 at Square Lake Notes: From Koko Lake to Square Lake is 10 miles without a reliable water source. Water management is key. From Square Lake back to the trailhead there is a reliable creek about halfway. I'll update the weather conditions Wednesday before. Hiking staffs are required.

Road trip: Crater Lake NP, Union Station, Rogue Gorge and Natural Bridge

Road trip to Crater Lake! So many have tried to capture the color of the blue with their cameras or fancy phones--and many come close. But until you see it with your own eyes, you'll see for yourself. It takes approximately 1 and 1/2 hours to get down there. We begin our adventure as we arrive at the southern entrance to the Crater Lake National park. Let's be tourists and see what we can see! After departing the park, we make to the nearby unincorporated community of Union Creek in Jackson County. People in the know, know all about Beckies Cafe and its famous Huckleberry pie (their food offerings are excellent as well, take only as you might expect). Next door is the Ice cream shop. I was there a few years back, and they were giving the ice cream away as they were closing their doors for the season. Great timing! On your way out/north we'll stop at the Rogue Gorge and Natural Bridge. Natural Bridge, a point located along the upper reaches of the Rogue River, is where the magic happens. At this point, the Rogue River disappears underground into a 250-foot lava tube, with a small amount of water escaping from the tube, forming a pool under the bridge. All of the water, slowly but surely, reappears at the surface further down the river. ****I need a couple of drivers to volunteer their vehicles. Also, if you happen to have a Senior, Lifetime, or America the Beautiful pass, please bring it. These passes waiver the $30 park fee. I have a pass. 2 hours back to Bend. The end time is approximate.

PCT, Maiden Lake and Peak Trail Loop, 1 - 2 nts. 1833 e.g. 14-19 mi.

This trail is one of my favorites in Oregon. It offers a little of everything--climbs, mossy trees, mountains, lake views, and a unique shelter. The trail is a very popular and accessible section of the Pacific Crest Trail near Willamette Pass. It is great for summer hiking, swimming, fishing, and backpacking, and in the winter it is the perfect trail for snowshoeing and cross-country skiing. Believe me, we'll return for a snowshoe adventure. We begin with a 2-mile gradual climb along the PCT (there are no switchbacks). At the top of the hill, we will be rewarded with amazing views of all three Rosary Lakes, Pulpit Rock, Odell Lake, Summit Lake, and Diamond Peak. From there is 2.5 miles east to Maiden Lake/Camp #1. If we wish to go further and or depending on conditions :), we continue north, counter-clockwise. We'll stop at the Maiden Shelter; it is an octagonal 2-story log cabin with an unlocked door, a wood stove, and solar lights. It's first come first served. It sleeps 12. (We'll be back when the snow flies for a snowshoe adventure--stay tuned for that one). It's mainly used for PCT thru-hikers. Afterward, we'll continue and eventually make our way to Gold Lake Campground/Camp #2. The next morning it is a 4-mile hike back to the vehicles. https://www.alltrails.com/explore/trail/us/oregon/pacific-crest-trail-and-maiden-peak-trail-loop?mobileMap=false&ref=sidebar-view-full-map We'll need one or two volunteers to drive. You will all pitch in for gas.

Past events (63)

Meet and Greet by the firepits at O'Kanes

Hugh O'Kanes Whiskey & Cigar Bar

Photos (540)