Bridge Creek Wilderness

  

Ochoco National Forest Bridge Creek Wilderness

Bridge Creek drains northeasterly from the edge of the summit of the Ochoco Mountains, essentially dividing the 5,400-acre wilderness into two meadow-filled plateaus. The peaks of East Point and North Point look across the wilderness from 6,625 feet and 6,607 feet, respectively.

The benches and springs in Bridge Creek are the result of massive landslides, heavy basalts cascading down weathered clay zones within the underlying volcanic terrain. Pisgah Lookout sits up on basalt rim, overlooking the wilderness.

The forest is mostly fir and larch with streaks of pine and clearings of sagebrush and bunchgrass. Stands of white fir and lodgepole pine are found in the central core of the wilderness. Most of the 30 inches of annual precipitation falls as winter snow. There are five perennial springs in the wilderness, including the Thompson, Pisgah, Masterson, Nelson, and Maxwell springs. Wildlife prominent in the area include elk, coyote, rabbit and many raptors and cavity nesting birds.

Orientation skills are a must for traveling because there are no maintained trails in Bridge Creek Wilderness. Off-trail hiking through the tangled understory tends to be difficult. Wind has stunted the trees and opened the country around North Point; a hike of about 1.2 miles from near Pisgah Springs along an abandoned jeep track will take you to the summit. Another abandoned trail leads about 1.5 miles to the summit of East Point.

In 2008, the Bridge Creek Fire burned most of the wilderness to stand replacement conditions. It is now more accessible with greater line-of-sight vistas. Please use caution as many trees have been weakened and present additional danger.

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At a Glance

Restrictions:
  • Motorized equipment and equipment used for mechanical transport is prohibited.
  • Possessing or using a bicycle or hang glider is prohibited.
  • Landing an aircraft, or dropping off or picking up any material by means of an aircraft is prohibited. 
  • Certified weed-free feed is required in all National Forests in the Pacific Northwest.   
Closest Towns: Prineville, OR
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center: Ochoco National Forest
3160 N.E. 3rd Street
Prineville, OR   97754 (541) 416-6500

General Information

Directions:

From Prineville, Oregon:

Travel 16 miles east on Highway 26.

Turn right at the junction to Walton Lake and Big Summit Prairie (County Road 23) and travel 9 miles to Forest Service Road 22.

Turn left onto Forest Service Road 22 and proceed approximately 7 miles to Walton Lake.  

Walton Lake Campground will be on your left, but continue on Forest Service Road 22 for approximately 2 miles.  

Turn left onto Forest Service Road 2630 and continue for approximately 4 miles.  

The southwestern corner of Bridge Creek Wilderness is located near the Indian Prairie area at the junction of Forest Service Road 2630 and Forest Service Road 2630-450.

Topo maps

Mitchell, Mount Pisgah, Ochoco Butte. Download free U.S. Forest Service Topo maps.

Buy maps online

Go to the National Forest Store.

Wilderness.net

Go to Wilderness.net for online maps and other important Wilderness information.


General Notes:

There are opportunities for solitude in this wilderness due to it's remote location. The area is generally snow-free from mid-June to mid November. Summers are hot and dry.


Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information

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Activities


Hiking

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Day Hiking

The fire damage from years ago is healing well now and there are young trees and an understory developing in this otherwise relatively untouched area. The roads to this wilderness area make it reasonably accessible and a person can wander wherever they like on foot.  

Backpacking

The lack of trails in this wilderness area may make traveling with a pack challenging, however the complete solitude may make up for it.  There are a couple of creeks in this wilderness area so water may be available.


Horse Riding & Camping

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