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Rattlesnake Way Trail #1497

Intermediate

Trail

3.5 mile 5.7 kilometer point to point
80% Runnable
Intermediate

Elevation

Ascent: 815' 249 m
Descent: -947' -289 m
High: 6,509' 1,984 m
Low: 5,663' 1,726 m

Grade

Avg Grade: 9% (5°)
Max Grade: 32% (18°)

Dogs

Off-leash
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Trail shared by Bruce Hope

Access to Mosquito Lake and to views from Rattlesnake Mountain.

Bruce Hope

Features Fall Colors · Lake · Views

This trail enters the Rogue-Umpqua Divide Wilderness so the usual Federal Wilderness Area regulations and restrictions apply here. Practice LNT backcountry skills and ethics. Camp 100 feet from fragile areas; bury human waste at least 200 feet from water, trails, and campsites.

This area is usually closed by snow between November and May. The first 2.0 miles of this trail from the northern trailhead were impacted by the 2017 Rattlesnake Fire. The part up from Windy Gap was not impacted.

Need to Know

Because of impacts from the 2017 Rattlesnake Fire, you should check with the Diamond Lake Ranger District [(541) 498-2531] before attempting to run in from the northern trailhead.

Description

This trail starts on Forest Road 3702-500 and runs south from there along the northeast boundary of Rogue-Umpqua Divide Wilderness. After about 1.5 miles, you pass the 0.5-mile Mosquito Lake Trail #1453, a short spur trail that ends at Mosquito Lake. At about 2.3 miles, on the slopes of Rattlesnake Mountain, you arrive at the Rattlesnake Mountain Spur Trail, a somewhat faint, but easy way to views from the cliffs near the summit.

The #1497 was built originally to service the fire lookout that once stood on the summit of Rattlesnake, which offers views of the Fish Creek Valley, Mount Bailey, Mount Thielsen, and Diamond Peak. A 30-foot pole L-4 tower fire lookout was built here in 1933. It had the dubious distinction of being destroyed in the 1962 Columbus Day hurricane.

The #1497 continues past the spur trail to the summit on trail constructed since the days of the fire lookout. It then proceeds down several long switchbacks to end at Windy Gap at a junction with the Whitehorse Meadows Trail #1477 and a tie trail to the Castle Creek Trail #1576.

If you just want to reach the views from Rattlesnake Mountain (and avoid any trail damage from the 2018 Rattlesnake Fire), you can reach the #1497 from the Happy Camp Trailhead on Forest Road 870 in the Fish Creek Valley. From there, follow the Castle Creek Trail #1576 northwest to its junction with the tie trail, then follow the tie trail northeast to Windy Gap.

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  3.0 from 1 vote

#23962

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Trail Rankings

#828

in Oregon

#23,962

Overall
5 Views Last Month
34 Since Oct 27, 2018
Intermediate

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Photos

Coming up from Windy Gap
Oct 28, 2018 near Crater…, OR

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