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Henline Mountain

Willamette Foothills, Oregon

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Henline Mountain

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  • Limited roadside parking at the trailhead.- Henline Mountain
  • Crossing the first scree slope rockslide.- Henline Mountain
  • The trail switches back several times through dense forest.- Henline Mountain
  • View toward the Willamette Valley early on the trail.- Henline Mountain
  • View to the southwest of the peaks surrounding the Cedar Creeks.- Henline Mountain
  • A couple of rock outcroppings along the trail offer expansive views.- Henline Mountain
  • First view of the summit of Mount Jefferson.- Henline Mountain
  • Bear grass blankets the forest floor nearing the end of the initial sets of switchbacks.- Henline Mountain
  • A break in the forest reveals mountainous views as the trail rounds a ridge.- Henline Mountain
  • The trail crosses another scree field nearing the lookout site.- Henline Mountain
  • The trail is almost indiscernible as it weaves through a scree field nearing the lookout site.- Henline Mountain
  • A rock wall has been built to make the trail obvious through the high scree field.- Henline Mountain
  • View toward the Willamette Valley from the lookout site.- Henline Mountain
  • View to the southeast of the lookout site with Mount Jefferson on the horizon and the Stack Creek Dome at the bottom left.- Henline Mountain
  • View to the north from the lookout site with Nasty Rock dominating the landscape- Henline Mountain
  • View to the east of Stack Creek Dome.- Henline Mountain
  • Close-up view of Mount Jefferson and all the mountainous peaks in the expanse from the lookout site.- Henline Mountain
  • Evidence of a fire ring at the lookout site. Remember the Leave No Trace principles.- Henline Mountain
  • Historic former lookout site.- Henline Mountain
  • The trail to the true summit from the lookout site disappears in thick rhododendrons.- Henline Mountain
  • The trail junction near the lookout site with the trail to the right leading to the true summit.- Henline Mountain
  • View toward the Willamette Valley from a ridge on the way to the true summit.- Henline Mountain
  • Expansive meadow along the Henline Mountain ridge.- Henline Mountain
  • Another smaller meadow along the ridge trail.- Henline Mountain
  • Sub-alpine and thick forest occupies the summit of Henline Mountain.- Henline Mountain
  • View of Mount Jefferson from the true summit shoulder of Henline Mountain.- Henline Mountain
  • Obscured view of Mount Hood from the summit shoulder.- Henline Mountain
  • The less-than-obvious trail as it nears the true summit.- Henline Mountain
  • The actual summit of Henline Mountain offers no views.- Henline Mountain
  • Expansive meadow along the ridge; many wildflowers can be found here.- Henline Mountain
  • - Henline Mountain
Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Expansive mountain views. Old-growth forest. Wildflowers. Historic former lookout site.
Cons: 
Limited parking.
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Region:
Willamette Foothills, OR
Congestion: 
Low
Pets allowed: 
Yes
Net Elevation Gain: 
2,805.00 ft (854.96 m)
Parking Pass: 
NW Forest Pass
Preferable Season(s):
Summer, Fall
Total Distance: 
8.00 mi (12.87 km)
Trail type: 
There-and-back
Trailhead Elevation: 
1,929.00 ft (587.96 m)
Current Local Weather:
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Hike Description

Hike Description

Pro Contributor

Named for a 19th century prospector and settler, Henline Mountain in the Opal Creek Wilderness is everything you'd expect it to be if you're familiar with the area. The tall, uncut old-growth woods, steep slopes with nearby sheer cliffs, rugged mountain views, occasional wildflower meadows and historically significant former lookout site make this a diverse adventure. 

This is prominently a switchback trail. It begins by climbing steeply through dense forests of Douglas firs and western hemlock with salal and vine maple fully occupying the underbrush. Views are infrequent initially with a couple of rock outcroppings offering vistas unobstructed by the forest. On a clear day, Marys Peak in the coast range across the Willamette Valley can be seen to the west. As the trail seems to endlessly switchback higher and higher, bear grass begins to occupy the trail's periphery. Then the trail levels out as it rounds the western ridges of Henline Mountain and the first view of Mount Jefferson's top can be seen before opening to a scree field just below the lookout ridge. 

Panoramic views of the whole Opal Creek Wilderness are a treat from the old lookout site. To the north, one can see the interestingly named Nasty Peak (also known as Not Nasty Peak) with Stack Creek Dome just below it. The road to Jawbone Flats as it disappears into the Bull of the Woods Wilderness is also visible to the west. But the highlight of this view is Mount Jefferson, high above all the forested peaks to the southeast. Little remains of the former lookout, save a few pieces of rebar. This site ends the designated trail; however, if you're feeling adventurous, you can proceed to the actual summit of Henline Moutain via the volunteer-maintained ridge trail. 

Skirting the ridge has the benefit of additional views toward the Willamette Valley as the trail crosses a steep, vast, wildflower-filled meadow. The trail then ascends sharply and roughly through dense forest via several short switchbacks before leveling out on the Henline Mountain shoulder. There is a break in the trees that allows for a distant, somewhat obstructed view of Mount Hood to the north and again, Mount Jefferson to the southeast. The trail proceeds on several more yards before ending in thick forest at the true summit. 

 

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