Fun Trail Facts
Cedar Butte Trail
County & State
Tillamook County, Oregon
Coast Range | Volcanics
Tillamook State Forest
Latitude & Longitude (DEC)
A great hike with little ones; Caution toward the top.
Difficult [lots of elevation gain in a very short distance]
Out and Back
Access to Trailhead
5.6 miles of fairly steep forest road that is deteriorated toward the top; Definitely dented my oil pan.
I was a little nervous about this hike, and it wasn't because of the 700' gain in .75 miles. That weighed a bit in the back of my mind, but it was the volume of cars this afternoon at every trailhead on Oregon Route 6 that really had me questioning today's choice of locale. That, coupled with the fact that there was a very recent article in Portland Monthly about the same destination. I just knew that we would get to the trailhead and be greeted by thirty Subarus.
Yeah, I was totally wrong about that. By the time we got up the mountainside on some pretty rough and muddy forest roads, there was not a single soul to be found at the trailhead parking. Guys on dirtbikes cruised by, but it turned out that we were on our own for the entirety of the hike.
Before hitting the switchbacks that announced nearly vertical climbing (whiny exaggeration, but I did have a 35 pound child atop my shoulders), we got to spend some great time looking at the results of previous burns in the area, and I had a grand time pantomiming the great Tillamook Burn.
One last (and steep) chunk of trail led us to the top of the butte, rewarding us with a true prairie fire of flowers and an ocean of green stretching from our position to the Pacific. A couple of rugged benches provided a nice spot to rest, and we enjoyed a fine lunch - peanut butter burritos, apples, sauteed sausage, and the obligatory granola bars.
In one of my favorite moments of the day, the young'un was quite agitated at the sight of some garbage up on the summit. There was some thick glass broken about and a few food wrappers. For background, he has been saying "bad polluters" every time we come across rogue garbage littered anywhere. He asked me if he could talk to them about what they did, and I said, "Sure, Kiddo." He stepped away from me and toward the edge, yelling at the top of his lungs, "Bad polluters! Stop leaving your things on the ground!" as though all of them would hear him from way up there. We picked up what we could, and I was left beaming about the righteous anger he expressed.
Short and sweet and sweaty. This was a really grand hike that has bitten me with desires to tackle some more of the Tillamook State Forest. I think Elk Mountain is off the table with the lad's presence, but I'm sure we'll figure out some appropriate places to hit