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Trip Report

Scorpion Mountain via Johnson Ridge, Kelley Creek & Kelley Creek via Martin Creek Trailhead — Monday, Jul. 22, 2019

Central Cascades
Scorpion summit

Try finding an abandoned or very neglected trail and you just might gain a better appreciation for the trails that are maintained.

There were six seasoned hikers and two cars positioned at each end of our planned route.  Two left at Martin Creek and two driven to the Johnson Ridge trailhead that starts at 3700' at roads end of FR 6520.  Roads at both ends are in better shape than many others.  We got a very early start for this complex trip.  So after getting vehicles placed we started up Johnson Ridge at 0730, crossing Sunrise Mountain and stopping briefly on Scorpion's flat summit.  Then, after taking in the spectacular view north and south, we headed down passing the Joan Lake trail junction looking for remnants of the trail that connects to the seemingly abandoned Kelley Creek trail.  We found blazes on trees and cut logs to follow but no trail.  We continued slowly southward, crossing steep slopes, fighting thick brush, traversing a large boulder field until finally sighting trail remnants and some cut logs about 50' above us (4580').  This was about two miles from Scorpion Mountain.  It was hot, the mosquitos were thick and we were tired of this off-trail exercise.  We were all so glad to have finally found an easier passage down on the old Kelley Creek trail and its intersection with the new section that continues down from the large log crossing over Kelley Creek at 3500'.  From there it was an easy hike 2.3 miles out to the Martin Creek trailhead; hiking down the trail where we had spent two days clearing logs the previous week.

While we did not successfully find the entire trail it was definitely a memorable trip.  And it appears there will be a return trip to see if we can find the section going up west of Captain Point to Scorpion Mountain.

Update note: Went back 01AUG19 and found and flagged the trail that connects with the Joan lake/Scorpion Mtn/Johnson Ridge trail.  Map (Jpeg) in link below.



RichP on Kelley Creek via Martin Creek Trailhead, Scorpion Mountain, Kelley Creek

I had pretty good luck following the trail from Scorpion to Captain Point. See my report on

Posted by:

RichP on Jul 23, 2019 05:26 PM