Split Rock Trail 9-14-18

Photos by Rich

We headed out in perfect weather and found a turnoff about a 1/2 mile above the Grouse Gap Rd on FS 20. We parked and headed a few hundred yards up the road, only to find that FS Rd 20 snaked around the hills and came back to where we were. So the idea is to continue a mile or so from Grouse Gap and there is a stake on the right to mark the trailhead, with room for a few cars. The route was generally well marked with cairns.

We headed out to MacDonald Peak and were amazed by the views on all sides. The trail skirts MacDonald Peak and with a bit of up and down you arrive at Split Rock.  You then descend and descend to Wagner Glade, about 3 miles from the start. It is a good trail but would suggest at least one pole for steep descents. 

At one point a log and a tape had been placed to block the trail and it seemed they had built a trail and then decided it was too steep and slippery. Naturally Sabin zotted down anyway and Rich and I went around to the right. It seemed too risky for the Monday Group so I went back up, then Sabin and Rich found an alternate trail and followed it back up to where I was standing. The Siskiyou Mountain Club had built an alternate route to the left through the rocks but it had not yet been well-marked. We went back down that way and carried on. 

At Wagner Glade you can find an open view over to red Mountain for lunch. We ran short of time but in another 1/2 mile, at mile 4, the trail intersects with the Wagner Butte Trail with another 2 miles to the top of Wagner Butte, for 5 1/2 miles total. 11 return. 

Notes; Watch out for wasps in the open places. I was stung. The temperature was 35 the night before and 45 when we got there, with a wind. Layer. Need to figure out the best way to hike the area. Lots of uphill after lunch. Beautiful hike. 

Ashland Hiking Home

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