Cowhorn Mountain (Deschutes NF) 05-Oct-2017

Cowhorn Mountain Deschutes National Forest Oregon

First off, it seems useful to review where we are here.  This is not the Little Cowhorn Mountain topped with a lookout and located on the Willamette National Forest at the end of a one mile trail. This Cowhorn – what some also, for extra confusion, call Cowhorn Butte – is on the Deschutes National Forest (in the Oregon Cascades Recreational Area) a few miles southwest of Crescent Lake.  Back before this Cowhorn’s cow-horn shaped summit spine fell over in a 1911 storm (some storm!), it was called Little Cowhorn to distinguish it from Mount Thielsen, which was then called Big Cowhorn.  The hike to this Cowhorn Mountain’s 7,664-foot summit is along the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) starting north from Windigo Pass, which is reached via Forest Road (FR) 60 (a good gravel road) off State Highway 138 about six miles north of Diamond Lake.

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Cowhorn Mountain (Deschutes NF) 03-Oct-2015

Cowhorn Mountain Deschutes National Forest Oregon

A low pressure front was scheduled to move through our area yesterday, bringing a (too) brief taste of fall (but no real precipitation) to our area. This seemed like the perfect moment to do the short, but fun, hike/scramble to the summit of Cowhorn Mountain, just north of Diamond Lake. Back before Cowhorn’s cow-horn shaped summit spine fell off in 1911, this peak was called Little Cowhorn to distinguish it from Mount Thielsen, which was then called Big Cowhorn. This is Hike #14 in Sullivan’s Southern Oregon hiking guide (Third Edition, 2014) and scramble #17 in Bond’s 2005 75 Scrambles in Oregon.

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A Morning on the Deschutes 27-May-2007

By 2007, we were done with mountaineering (a good run, but let’s not push it…), starting to do more hiking, and had done a little rafting (if you can call the Grand Canyon little 🙄 ). So, on the way back from some hikes near Lakeview (Crook Peak, Gearhart Wilderness) we thought it would be fun to sign-up for a half-day paddle raft trip on the Deschutes River. There were a bunch of people signed-up as well but, due to some inexplicable sorting behavior, all of them ended-up in one raft and we had one guide and a raft to ourselves. The Deschutes south of Bend packs a lot of fun whitewater into a short distance and we had a great time crashing in and out of the rapids. This only cemented our desire to do more rafting (which we did) and, of course, more hiking (we did that too). We also eventually figured out how to combine rafting and hiking! 🙂

Buried
Unburied
Buried again
Flying to slack water… 🙂
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