The Rogue River has been popular for many years and for various reasons. Today it’s a great place to hike, raft, and explore the wilderness. Over 100 years ago it was more popular among people searching to strike it rich with gold. The Whisky Creek Cabin was home to some of those individuals.
Built in the 1880s by an unknown miner, it started out as a very basic shelter—one room with a dirt floor. Over the years improvements were made by different owners and caretakers. One of those improvements came about in the 1950s—a solar powered shower! Today the cabin is listed on the National Registry of Historic Places and is the oldest known mining cabin still standing along the lower Rogue River Trail. The site is a great place to explore and learn about some of the people who used to call this place home. Little has changed since the last resident left in the early 1970s.
Located just over 3 miles downstream from the Grave Creek launch site, Whisky Creek Cabin is only accessible by trail or river. There’s a reason they call the river wild and scenic: The hike along the trail is filled with amazing views of the river, the canyon, and waterfalls! There are plenty of opportunities to spot birds and other little (or possibly big) critters along the way. Be sure to take a camera and binoculars!
About 1.5 miles along the trail is a sign marking the high water level during the 1964 flood. It was an impressive amount of water that must have been flowing through there. A little farther down the trail is a spur leading to a viewpoint for Rainy Falls. It’s a great spot to watch rafters coming down the river. At mile 3, just past the footbridge, a trail sign points toward the cabin located up the creek. The Rogue River Trail continues on down the river for more than 30 miles.
Parking at the trailhead may be crowded during late spring and summer when rafting season is in full swing. Restrooms are located at the parking area. A few pit toilets are along the trail, but the BLM warns that by summer 2017 they will be full and no longer available for hikers or rafters. Camping is prohibited at the cabin, but there are primitive campsites located close by. Be sure to follow the Leave No Trace guidelines while along the trail.