Tire Mountain Oregon
Tire Mountain outside of Oakridge, Oregon is a relatively easy 7.6 mile round trip hike through old growth forests and sloping meadows filled with seasonal wildflowers. Mid-June through mid-July will provide the best variety of wildflowers. Tire Mountain was once home to a small fire lookout, now all that remains is the cleared spot on the top of the mountain. Since its decommissioning, trees and brush have overgrown the clearing obstructing all views from the top. This trail is open to hikers and bikers so be prepared to share the trail!
Location: About 53 miles East of Eugene and only 15 miles from Oakridge just off of Highway 58, Tire Mountain is a readily accessible lower elevation (around 3500 ft) cascade hike.
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Google Maps: Eugene to Tire Mountain Trailhead
Time involved: Expect to spend 1-4 hours on the hike depending on whether or not you go all the way to the top of the mountain. The round trip hike is 7.6 miles. For a shorter trip you may want to stop at the last meadow (just before the old growth forests) and turn around. While the hike is rewarding, the view from the top is rather lack-luster. Also the last 3/4 mile is steep and very slick when muddy. It may not be suitable for young children or inexperienced hikers.
Adventure Specifics: The well defined trail winds through lush green forest to the first meadow which has the best viewpoint of the hike. On a clear day you can see snowcapped peaks and Hills Creek Reservoir outside of Oakridge. The trail continues through intermittent meadows with several varieties of wildflowers. After the last meadow (which is one of the larger meadows on the hike) you enter a beautiful old growth forest. After trekking through the old growth for about a mile you will reach a hair-pin turn. Approx. 50 yards down the trail there will be an unmarked junction. To continue to the top of Tire Mountain stay to the left and start the climb uphill. This section of trail can be quite steep and slippery with several switchbacks. It may not be the best choice for inexperienced hikers. Overall, the trail maintains very gentle elevation changes until the last mile.
Warnings: Despite the gentle grade of the trail the meadows are steep and aren’t a safe spot for young children to run unsupervised. Please stay on the trail so you don’t damage the wildflower meadows for others. Also, as previously mentioned, the last section of the trail is not well maintained and is not recommended for inexperienced hikers. There are no facilities at the trailhead and cell service is intermittent at best.
What to bring: Bring your own water as there isn’t any at the trailhead nor is there a permanent source to filter along the trail. Sturdy boots, sunscreen, and bug spray are all highly recommended. If you are going during the height of summer wildflower season, don’t forget your camera!
Amenities: There are no bathrooms, water or trash receptacles at the trailhead. The ‘pack it in, pack it out’ rule applies here. Carry a trash bag and try to leave the trail looking better than when you came!
Best time to go: June & July will afford you the best scenery. The weather will be most stable in July & August. Snow usually begins to fall around November, but usually melts from the trail by late April or early May. In the early/late Spring, trail conditions will be extremely wet and muddy.
Detailed Step-By-Step Directions:
- To get to the trailhead drive east on HWY 58 to the Westfir Rd. exit on the left just before Oakridge.
- Drive .5 mile crossing the river and take a sharp left at the stop sign.
- Continue to the next stop sign at the covered bridge.
- Continue straight past the bridge on NF 19 for 4.7 miles then turn left crossing the river onto FSR 1912.
- Follow FSR 1912 for about 7 winding miles.
- At the junction go straight on to FSR 1911 for .3 miles and look for the Alpine Trail #3450 on your left (sign may be missing/damaged). There will be a small pullout/parking area.