Thunderbird
Mt Jefferson
Chemeketans
Sharing A Common Interest
In Outdoor Activities
Schedule  Conditioning  Potluck

Backpacking

Each year the Chemeketans offer a selection of backpacks to a wide variety of truly amazing destinations. Many of these destinations are in Oregon, but we also venture to other places all over the western United States.

If you are an experienced backpacker, please join us by contacting the leader of a backpack that interests you (see Schedule below). These trips vary in length and difficulty. The leader will help you determine if the trip suits your skill and conditioning level. While we make every effort to provide accurate information about each trip, weather and other factors may force changes to dates and trip routes. Most backpacks will have a limit of 6-12 participants.

If you are new to backpacking, or if it has been awhile since you have been out, consider attending the Beginner Backpacking Class offered every spring. The class has two parts: (1) in April, a classroom show and tell of gear and backpacking food; and (2) in June, a weekend backpack trip to practice your new skills.

Whether a novice or an old hand, please join us for the Annual Backpackers Potluck in January or February.

The backpacks for the coming season are announced at the potluck. Then in the March issue of the Bulletin, detailed descriptions of the backpacks are published. These descriptions appear again in the Bulletin two months prior to the scheduled trip.

You are not required to be a member of the Chemeketans to participate in backpacks, but we encourage you to become one. If more people sign up for a backpack than the allowable limit, leaders may give preference to members. For more information about membership, contact the Membership Secretary.

More info? Questions? Concerns? Contact one of the backpacking co-chairs:
Rick Cooper Tel: (503) 362-9719 - email: cooperrm50@gmail.com
Joel Zak Tel: (503) 559-6826 - email: zj3002@yahoo.com

2018 Backpacking Schedule

(For descriptions, click Activities that show the hand pointer.)

DateDayActivityLeader
May 28 - Jun 2Mon-Sat
Hells Canyon Loop
Shonee Langford
Jun 14 - Jun 17Thu-Sun
Wild Rogue Wilderness Loop
Tim Taylor
Jun 22 - Jun 24Fri-Sun
Beginners'
cooperrm50@gmail.com
Aug 10 - Aug 12Fri-Sun
Jefferson Park
Bill Sullivan
Aug 19 - Aug 28Sun-Tue
Grand Sawtooth Loop
Rick Cooper
Aug 25 - Sep 2Sat-Sun
PCT - Suiattle River Trail to Rainy Pass
Ray Drapek
Sep 6 - Sep 10Thu-Mon
Mt Hood Circumnavigation
Joel Zak
Sep 13 - Sep 16Thu-Sun
Sky Lakes Wilderness Loop
David Anderson
Sep 30 - Oct 5Sun-Fri
Rogue River Trail
Rick Cooper

Schedule  Conditioning  Potluck

Backpacking Conditioning Assessment
For those considering backpacking, the Henline trail provides a good self-test for your lungs and gear. Load your pack up with about 25 lbs, slip on those boots, and see what you can do. The route to the old lookout site is a 2,160 foot climb over 3.8 miles of good trail. There are several viewpoints and rock outcrops from which you can see Mt. Jefferson as well as the surrounding Old Cascades, including square-topped Battle Ax. You can also look to the west to see the tallest mountain in Oregon's Coast Range, Marys Peak.

Directions: Drive State Highway 22 (North Santiam Highway) 23 miles to the town of Mehama. At the second flashing yellow light take a left onto Little North Fork Road. Go 14.8 miles on the paved road to where it changes to gravel. Continue on this potholed road for 1.3 miles to a fork. Go left onto Road 2209 past the sign that says "Road Closed 6 Miles Ahead". Exactly one mile after this fork, watch for the trailhead on the left side of the road (Henline Mountain Trail #3352). Park on the right shoulder.

Rating (times to the lookout site):

  • 1 hr, 30 min +/- 10 minutes ... Superior condition
  • 2 hours +/- 10 minutes ... Medium condition
  • 2 hr, 30 min +/- 10 minutes ... Kinda slow
  • Over 2 hr, 45 minutes ... Consider only easy backpacks

Schedule  Conditioning  Potluck

Annual Backpackers' Potluck
The annual Backpackers' Potluck is a gathering for backpackers, past, present and potential, to meet and socialize. Backpackers are invited to bring photographs and a few select slides from their backpacking adventures to share. The seasons backpacks will be introduced. Watch the Bulletin for further information.

Revised 29 December 2017