Elk Creek 3-27-17

Photos by Bob and John

Eleven Monday hikers set out under threatening skies with the spirit of adventure as pioneers on Ashland Hiking Group's first foray into Elk Creek Park. The weather improved to light showers mixed with welcome sunshine.

We parked a mile down the west branch of Elk Creek and hiked into the park. Elk Creek was raging with white water and had become a river fed by the Spring run off. The park itself was inviting, with picnic tables, restrooms, and well marked trails.

We hiked down to the "notched" Elk Creek Lake Dam. The Elk Creek project was the third dam (in addition to Lost Creek and Applegate) authorized by Congress in 1971 for flood control, water supply, fish and wildlife enhancement and recreation in southern Oregon. Conservation groups won a victory in the 1980's and had the dam project stopped at 1/3 completion and notched open over the creek to allow spawning salmon and steelhead to complete their journey upstream.

We had lunch near the mouth of the notch. We were invigorated by the newest of our surroundings along the Yellow Rock trail. All told we hiked 8 miles with the upper end of the park, to be explored on a future hike.

On the way back, we stopped at Buffalo Wings for beers, fries, and onion rings.

Rich S.
Hike Leader

Ashland Hiking Home

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