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
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 season's backpacks will be introduced. Watch the Bulletin for further information.