Wake-Robins in the Forest (Southwest Oregon) 28-Apr-2021

Our recent trip down Oregon’s Illinois River was excellent. But it did reveal some flagging of the old rafting muscles, as it’s been nearly two years since our last go with the flow. So between paddling (not optional on the Illinois), sinew clenching plunges into dang cold (50°F (10°C)) water, pushing and pulling of rafts off rocks, and helping a little with hauling gear, we were a tad sore. We got home and (being tough & stupid) immediately got on with a yard project that’s been next week for a year now. Magnificently heavy mountains of dirt, grass, bark, and pavers got heaved hither and yon over hills and dales of our own making. We were just two pavers short of having recreated the Great Pyramid of Giza when the project was finally finished. I say “finally” secure in the knowledge that such projects never actually finish until the house is sold or burns down during a project involving blow torches.

By yesterday evening, every muscle not related to hiking was a wreck. The temptation to lie on the couch and moan softly was strong – but our sofa is now Sofie’s (our cat) designated (by her) day napping area and she dislikes (at the atomic hairball level) sharing. So off we went to the Jacksonville Forest to use our still functioning hiking muscles to see the mid-Spring floral displays of Wake-Robins (Trilliums) and other wildflowers. From parking area 3, we went up the Jackson Creek Nature Trail, over Jackson Ridge on the Sofie’s and Legburner Trails, and back to P-3 on the Shade Creek and Canyon Falls Trails.

Up the Jackson Creek Nature Trail
Milkmaids with guest
Few-Flowered False Solomon’s Seal
Red Henbit
Miner’s Lettuce
Hooker Fairybell (?)
Western Wake-Robin (Trillium)
Henderson Fawn Lily
Oregon Grape in senescence
Calypso Orchid
The remains of Shade Creek
Mountain Strawberry
Enroute to compost
Returning down the Shade Creek Trail

After just 3.7 miles (5.9 km) and 1,020 feet (311 m) of gain, all of our muscles were now twanging. We returned home, moved Sofie to her alternative napping area (aka the floor), and sank into blissful repose on the couch. 🙂 Although it does give off a nice glow, we’ll deal with the resulting atomic hairball later… 🙄

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12 comments

  1. Going from Hogan Lake to Big Blue Lake is just a steep hike, not a scramble – plenty of footholds and not so steep that you worry about falling. The biggest challenge is getting around the thick vegetation around where the outlet from Big Blue enters Hogan. I went high up to the left and back around to the right to avoid this. Once you’re past that, the slope opens into rocks and very low growing plants with big views. If you want to continue on from Big Blue to Upper Albert you might run into a little scrambling but if it gets too hard, you’re off-course. Aim toward the notch and don’t let yourself get drawn toward Point 7654.

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  2. Wondering about your trek from hagon lake to big blue lake. Apparently no trail. Im curious about how steep and if there are enough foot holds for hiking. Can a person go up ok with just hiking shoes and poles or does it require more like scrambling on all fours? Thanks for all your great posts.

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  3. The Enchanted Forest Trail, short as it is, has garnered almost the most views of anything I’ve posted. It is a wonderful little hike, which can be paired with the Fenton Memorial Trail for a good half-day hike. Of course, the Enchanted Forest’s popular may be due, in part, to the nearby wineries.

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  4. Haha, we still have a list of those ‘next week’ projects, even after tackling a mountain of projects here in Florida. You’re right, it’s never ending. So funny that Sofie is a sofa hog! Magnolia might want the sofa to herself, but we push her aside and make her share, LOL.

    You are capturing a wonderful array of spring wildflowers in your beautiful photos. Love those Calypso Orchids. Have you ever hiked the Enchanted Forest Trail? It doesn’t really qualify as a hike, but it is a magical stroll through fantastic numbers of wildflowers, especially Shooting Stars. (It’s on our blog.) 🙂

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  5. I was wondering if they could be grown at home; that is good to know! My mother grew many native plants in her garden, but never those. I might give it a try. I love your stories and photos!!!

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  6. There are 7 species of shooting star in the Pacific Northwest of which Henderson’s is locally common and the one we see most often in the Spring. I don’t know if they are vulnerable but they can be cultivated in your home garden.

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  7. Yes, I believe that’s it! My mother especially loves those, as my father would bring some to her when he went mushroom hunting. Her joy is a special memory. Not sure if they are protected now, as I noticed they are considered vulnerable.

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  8. Thanks! If you mean Henderson’s Shooting Star, then, yes, we see those around here. They first started blooming about a month ago and now many have moved on to setting seed.

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  9. Wonderful wildflower photos! Do you ever see the “shooting star” flower?

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  10. The Deschutes, Santiam, and Rogue are all great, smaller rivers. The Rogue is, of course, our local favorite. The Illinois is probably closer to the Santiam than the others in terms of complexity – just far less accessible. Only three small raft companies run the Illinois and only for a very few weeks a year (or not at all if the flow isn’t there). So we feel lucky for finally having been able to raft it.

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  11. I don’t think I ever rafted the Illinois but when I lived in Portland in the 70s I rafted the Deschutes, Rogue and Santiam among others. It was great! Thanks for bringing back the memory!

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