A Bit of Seasonal Flooding

Each year at this time the River Trail joins the river. That is, a part of it goes under water depending on the amount of snow melt and rainwater that hits the Crooked River. 

The park has posted signs where you might encounter some flooding near the southern junction of the Mesa Verde and River Trails. It fluctuates a lot at this time of year, so if you’re bored or want to go boating, you can watch the readings from the bridge gauge. Here you go.

Otherwise, click on the image below for a pdf of the affected area and be prepared for some soggy sneakers!

Balds and Goldens are Back

It’s nesting time again at Smith Rock State Park for both pairs of golden and bald eagles. While hiking trails remain open, some campsites and climbing route closures will go into effect from February 17 to August 1 to give them a little privacy.

Canyon Trail and Campground (Bivy) areas:

  • The bald eagle nest is located near posted signs along the Canyon Trail. Park managers are asking for those using the trail to please:

    *KEEP NOISE TO A MINIMUM

    *DO NOT LOITER & STAY ON TRAIL

    *TRAVEL IN GROUPS OF 4 OR LESS

The Dawn of a Smith Rock Master Plan

Didn’t get a chance to hear what was said at the first in a series of public meetings on the new Smith Rock State Park Master Plan?

Well here’s a link to the cliff notes from the Oregon Parks and Recreation Department. 

SmithRockMasterPlanAssessmentsNOTE-the links are Word documents for the Redmond meetings.
If you prefer pdfs, here you go:

Redmond Advisory Committee Meeting Summary
Redmond Public Meeting Summary
Portland Public Meeting Summary

Not sure what the Master Plan is? Essentially it is the culmination of park assessments, surveys, and public comment sessions to determine how to best manage the park and its resources going forward. 

Coming up on Ground Hog Day at Smith Rock

While the usual January warm-up time is here, Smith Rock still has evidence of the huge snow dump from December and early January.

wintertime at Smith Rock
Snow-capped Gray Butte in the distance from the Canyon Trail

 

Misery Ridge Trail descent off the back side of Monkey Face in wintertime at Smith Rock
Misery Ridge Trail descent off the back side of Monkey Face

Trails are a combination of slush, mud, snow, and ice.

While the amount of snow looks tame enough, 3 inches of ice is lurking below, so any downgrade not melted out is very treacherous.

traction treads for boots
traction treads for hiking boots

Bring your traction devices for your shoes and hiking poles for stability, especially on Misery Ridge’s shady parts. 

Online resource for adventurers to Smith Rock State Park. Detailed information for rock climbing, hiking, mountain biking, slacklining and horseback riding.