Songer Butte via the Songer Wayside Trail 5-19-23

Photos by Kate and Kay

Ashland Hiking Home

The trail to Songer Butte from Songer Wayside parking at Emigrant Lake is filled with wildflowers this time of year, but has few hikers.  Drive almost 8 miles on Highway 66 from Ashland and turn left into the Songer Wayside parking area.  Look for the trail sign (photo shown) to the left from the upper parking area.  Take the trail down the slope and turn right onto the Songer Spur trail. The trail crosses a small stream and follows the fence line along the edge of Emigrant Lake.

The meadows were filled with pussey paws, blue dicks, western buttercups and fiddlenecks.  After about a mile the trail forks (photo shown) and we took the right trail up to Little Songer Butte Rocks.  As we hiked up the slope we were pleased to meet Jim Meissner, carrying clippers, who told us that he made the trail. We expressed gratitude to Jim for maintaining such a beautiful trail at Emigrant Lake. 

After viewing Little Songer Rocks we continued down the trail.  At the next boundary tree, we turned left onto a trail up the hill to Songer Butte.  The trail up the hill is a good climb, but it’s worth the effort to get to the top and overlook all of Emigrant Lake. We had lunch while admiring the high-water level in Emigrant Lake with lazuli buntings singing and yellow swallowtail butterflies flitting by.  

We returned downhill, taking the trail around Little Butte Rocks and rejoining our first trail out from the parking area.  We only met 2 hikers, and hiked 5 miles with a 600’ gain.