Joined: 23 May 2008
Posts: 2308 | TRs | Pics
I was in the Mt. Hood area last weekend and was looking for a good half day trip. Cairn Basin via Vista Ridge looked like it would fit the bill. Arrived at the small parking area around 12:30pm. It was packed full so I had to park a quarter mile down the road.
The first 0.75 mile was on pleasant shaded trail and was followed by two miles of ghost forest. The 2011 Dollar Lake Fire torched this area, but there has been plenty of regrowth in the past eight years.
At the first junction after the burn area, I headed west toward Eden Park. The wildflowers here were absolutely fantastic. I took my time through here, enjoying the smell of the flowers and the sound of creeks running through the meadow. Ahh.
Just before Eden Park, a crossing of Ladd Creek is required. I'd heard that this crossing could be tricky, but I had no issues whatsoever.
Eden Park was beautiful. From there, it was another half mile and couple hundred feet up to Cairn Basin. Cairn Basin was beautiful, but it was a bit crowded when I arrived and clouds were now blocking views of Hood, so I didn't stay too long.
I followed the Timberline Trail to the upper crossing of Ladd Creek (trickier than the lower, but still not bad at all) and then descended into Wy'East basin. From there, the trail intersected the Vista Ridge trail, which I followed all the way back to the car.
Fantastic day and spectacular wildflowers