Scheduled for Fridays, year-round, the Moderate Group is one option under the Ashland Hiking Group. It is for those who need or desire a lightly paced, shorter hike than is customary in the other AHG options. These hikes feature an easy pace for 4-6 miles (occasionally 7) and typically under 800’ elevation gain. Winter snowshoeing distances and elevation gains will be less.
We take a leisurely lunch break to socialize and sometimes share a short poem or other form of inspiration (voluntary but welcomed). On the trail, we stay together for safety and enjoyment. If a hiker wants to stop short of the destination, at least one fellow hiker will join. We recommend a hiking pole or two, and sturdy hiking boots. When driving a distance, we may have a voluntary post-hike experience in the area or on our return drive. Bring lunch, plenty of liquids, sunscreen, hat, and basic first aid items. Seasonal items include bug repellent, raincoat, winter attire and snowshoes.
Leave the Rite Aid parking lot on Ashland Street at 8:30 AM (unless informed otherwise for a given hike). Plan a full day, unless the hike location is close to Ashland. Carpooling is by personal choice, arranged at Rite Aid parking. All hikers must sign a liability waiver, provided by the hike leader, before their first hike with an Ashland Hiking Group, which covers liability for any of the AHG hike options.
While the Covid 19 Pandemic is with us, hikers must be fully vaccinated and bring masks for use when close to others or indoors, and while driving together in an enclosed vehicle.
November 4: Enchanted Forest in Applegate Valley Leave at 9:00 AM
TH: Drive through Jacksonville and take Highway 238 towards Applegate for 15 miles. Just before downtown Applegate and the bridge, make a right onto North Applegate Road for 4.5 miles to a fork where you go right on Kubli Road for 400' and then right on Slagle Creek Road for 1.5 miles to the TH at pavement end. EDT: 60 minutes. Description: Hike through the forest of Ponderosa pine, Douglas fir, and Madrone and cross through a meadow. At 0.7 miles, fork right onto the Felton Trail among viewpoints and Madrone to trails end at a granite memorial for three men who died there in a helicopter crash in 1993. After snacks, return back to the Enchanted Forest trail, turn right and follow it up the creek just 0.5 miles to enjoy the preponderance of Maple leaves. We’ll not take the steep climb to the saddle. We’ll turn around and head back down the forest trail to the TH. Hike distance: 5.4 miles; elevation gain about 500 feet. Weather forecast. RT driving mileage: 80 miles. Optional visit to Wooldridge Winery to enjoy fermented grape juice (wine; or nonalcoholic drink) and charcuterie or Pennington Farms (dinner and dessert pies).
November 11: Wolf Gap to Siskiyou - Little Applegate Viewpoint + Deming Gulch to Armstronc Gulch
TH: Head up I-5 to exit 24, Phoenix. Left into Phoenix and then right on OR-99. Turn left onto South Stage Road then for left on Griffin Lane. In about a mile turn right onto West Griffin Creek Road for about 4 miles. Turn left at the T-junction onto Sterling Creek Road. Go almost 7 miles and turn left at the Sterling Mine Ditch Trail sign, BLM 39-2-8, (past milepost 8). Drive 0.2 miles up to the T-intersection, then left 2.5 miles to the Wolf Gap TH parking. The last 2.5 miles are on a rough gravel road. High clearance vehicles are recommended. EDT: 1 hour.
Hike Description: Two hikes for the price of one. Out and back hike from Wolf Gap TH to the Siskiyou - Little Applegate Viewpoint (2.0 miles round-trip), 100’ elevation gain. Then we will drive back down the road, 1.7 miles to the Deming Gulch TH. From Deming TH, hike to Armstrong Gulch TH, 1.5 miles/3 miles round-trip. Total hike distance about 5 miles, 100-200’ elevation gain. Weather forecast. RT Mileage: 70 miles.
November 18: Oredson Todd Woods in Ashland Watershed and Thanksgiving Gathering
TH: Park on Chitwood Lane or nearby on Clay Street. Walk up Clay onto gravel road. When road ends turn left and cross Clay Creek on wooden bridge, and follow trail up hill to Oredson-Todd (OT) trail. Take OT to Upper Trail past “waterfalls” to Mike Utoff trail. Hike up Mike Utoff trail to bench overlooking Ashland. Return down Mike Utoff , then take OT Lower trail and return back down Clay Street. Distance: 3 miles; elevation gain: around 400 feet. Weather forecast.
November 25: New Wonder Trail Meet at the Wonder Trail TH (NOT RITE AID) AT 8:50 AM
TH: Drive up Granite Street alongside Lithia Park to the end beyond the swimming reservoir. Straight ahead to the upper parking area on your left. The TH is across from the parking.
Description: Wonder Trail is the longest single-track trail in the Ashland Watershed. It follows the west-side ravines regaled by many varieties of trees: madrones, fireproof ponderosa pines, and Douglas firs. Several ravines were showcases for moss-covered granite boulders that cascaded down from Mt. Ashland millions of years ago. We’ll see ample evidence of the hard work devoted to creating this trail and the results of the Ashland Forest Resiliency (ARF) project’s thinning the density, preserving healthy trees and burning understory fuel. We’ll hike up the lower Wonder trail to an open area suitable for sitting for snacks and a rest. We may return from there for an “in and out” journey, or continue a short distance to intersect with the USFS Road 2060 for a loop descent to the cars. Either way, our hike will be 4.6 miles with an elevation gain/loss of 800’. Weather forecast.
Post hike options: Take a peaceful stroll through the new Japanese Garden in the Park and/or stop for a light bite (and maybe a beer on tap) together at Skout Taphouse and Provisions at the end of Lithia Park where the Guanajuato Walk begins.
Please let me know if you are coming: email@example.com or text with your name included to 541.646.6109