Today is the autumnal equinox here in the Northern Hemisphere. Summer has passed. As things go, it mercifully lacked drama – mostly only a few, small, quickly suppressed wildfires occurred. The one big one to our north generated only a few days of smoke in the valley. A handful were started naturally by lightning; others were summoned-up by dirt-stupid humans with a penchant for lighting campfires in stiff crosswinds or casting sparks into dried grass. One guy incinerated several hundred acres of trees (and his house) in a nearby forest when his illegal hash oil still exploded – now that’s a real special kind of stupid. 🙄

Still, all considered, it was a very nice summer. We decided to celebrate its passing with a short (4 miles, 1,200 feet of gain) loop hike in nearby Jacksonville Forest Park. The park had finished a new trail – the Rattlesnake Gulch – over the summer and we wanted to hike it. So we started from Parking Area 6, went up the Pipsissewa Trail, down the Knobcone Pine Trail, up the Siskiyou View Loop Trail, down the Rattlesnake Gulch Trail 🙂 , then back to P-6 on the Siskiyou and Halls of Manzanita Trails. We finished in time for lunch in Jacksonville. This being Southern Oregon and all, we will likely see some more ideal Fall hiking weather before we have to start looking for our snowshoes. 😉

Going up the Pipsissewa Trail
View from the Pipsissewa
Along the Pipsissewa Trail
Madrone abstract
A gathering of lichens
A leaf in Fall
Descending the Knobcone Pine Trail
A leaf in detail
Down the Rattlesnake Gulch Trail
Madrone abstract
Heading back on the Halls of Manzanita Trail