Lost Creek Lake (Southwest Oregon) 09-May-2021

Our friend Jennifer is a Southern Oregon native and her parents and brother still live in Medford. When she’s in town visiting them, and our schedules mesh, we try to do a hike with her. Today being Mother’s Day and all, there was just time for a short hike together in the morning. An out-and-back at Lost Creek Lake – between the Lewis Road Trailhead and the Blue Grotto – was deemed just the right length (4.5 miles / 7.2 km). The Grotto’s waterfall is now dry. This is, however, that fleeting moment in the annual water cycle when the reservoir is near full. For a couple of months, it will actually look like a lake, rather than like a mud-ringed bathtub (it’s now at 83% full and that may be as good as it gets this year). Plus there are some different wildflowers in bloom now. So we went out-and-back, enjoying views of the lake, catching-up on gossip, trying to identify odd wildflowers, and dodging (hopefully) the massive growths of poison oak bordering the trail. It was two hours well spent, with plenty of time remaining afterward for Mother’s Day festivities. 🙂

On the trail to the dry Blue Grotto
Oregon Geranium
The beach near Fire Glen Campground
Meadow Death Camas
Lost Creek Lake
Blue-green volcanic ash, from the Crater Lake eruption, intrudes into the lake
Western Starflower
On the trail
Western Serviceberry
Mountain Pea
The Blue Grotto no longer runneth over
A rock spire at the Grotto
Red Columbine
Lost Creek Lake
Heading back
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2 comments

  1. Thanks! At least the dam at Elk Creek didn’t happen and instead we got a nice walking path with creek access. 🙂 I have many more photos of Lost Creek and Applegate Lakes as mud-rimmed tubs than I do as “Instagram” water-filled lakes. Maybe I’ve been at it too long, but even the tubs seem to have some photogenic qualities. 🙄 I try to capture both. And the wildflowers are a saving grace.

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  2. I remember when they built that dam (another SO native.) There was a ton of opposition. They destroyed and flooded a newly-minted Wild and Scenic river…for “flood control.” The beautiful recreational lake they promised is kind of like instagram vs. Reality. Beautiful photos, love the starflower!!!

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