Pets allowed
Allowed
Elevation Gain
?
Trail type
There-and-back
Distance
16.00 mi (25.75 km)
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

South of Ontario, Oregon, a true backcountry adventure in the Owyhee Canyonlands awaits. It's a place where the roads are unmarked, the trails are a combination of jeep routes and cattle paths, and there are no designated trailheads or interpretive signs. For those looking to try a new adventure in Oregon, the Honeycombs in the Owhyee Canyonlands is your ticket.

Formed from volcanic tuff, the Honeycombs resemble formations found in the popular Smith Rock State Park. After a 4-mile hike along Juniper Ridge you begin the 1000-foot descent into the Honeycombs. Here you'll be surrounded by large spires, boulder fields, and steep canyon walls that are spotted with caves. Once you've finished the descent, follow the prominent creek drainage out to Bensley Flat, which offers great camping. A small grove of cottonwoods on Owyhee Lake's north shore provides ample shade and easy access to swimming. From here one could spend days exploring the Honeycombs. If you are looking for a little more adventure, bring your rocks shoes, as there are plenty of bouldering opportunities throughout the area.

Please note that there is little to no running water on the way to Owyhee Lake, especially between late spring and early fall. Plan well and pack accordingly.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Spring
Fall

Congestion

Low

Parking Pass

Not Required

Pros

No crowds. Wild horses. Swimming. Remote.

Cons

Rough roads. Difficult route finding. Little to no water.

Trailhead Elevation

4,300.00 ft (1,310.64 m)

Net Elevation Gain

1,600.00 ft (487.68 m)

Features

Backcountry camping
Big vistas
Geologically significant

Suitable for

Horseback

Location

Field Guide + Map

Nearby Adventures

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Comments

04/27/2015
This is one of my favorite places on earth. No trails, no crowds, all wild. You can also get there by paddling up from Leslie Gulch. Early spring or fall is the best time, otherwise you'll roast in the summer or freeze in the winter. Follow the mustang paths and a good map to Painted Canyon. It's Oregon's red rock country at its best. Not for the inexperienced, if you get in trouble out there, you are on your own.
Amazing part of Oregon.
Looks like an awesome trip.
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