McKee Bridge Day Use Area and Community Kitchen

The day use area provides access to the Applegate River, where people enjoy fishing, wading, and swimming. Much of the day-use area is flat and easily accessed, except for the steps down to the river.

Situated along the rocky banks of the Applegate River, the McKee Bridge Community Kitchen is a fantastic day-use picnic shelter and registered National Historic Site. The shelter is constructed with large pine timber and features Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) masonry, including a beautiful stone fireplace. Groups often reserve McKee Community Kitchen when holding a wedding ceremony on the neighboring historic covered bridge. Located in southwest Oregon in the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest at an elevation of 1,600 feet, nearby attractions include volcanic peaks, scenic rivers, wilderness areas, and fantastic old-growth forests.

The area surrounding the McKee Bridge offers outdoor enthusiasts the opportunity to hike, fish, swim, ski and enjoy a multitude of outdoor activities throughout the year. Nearby Applegate Lake is a recreation lake located north of the spectacular Red Buttes Wilderness Area. The lake is popular for swimming, cycling, boating, canoeing, fishing and hiking the various trails. Mule Mountain Trail offers visitors a special opportunity to access the hillsides above the Applegate Valley and witness the seasonal changes in wildlife activity. It is a long distance hike, winding up and around the arid ridges of Oregon's Siskiyou Range. In the spring time, dwarf star tulips, lilies, shooting stars, larkspurs and buttercups puncture the needle and leaf mat and adorn the grass floor.

Reservations for the McKee Bridge Community Kitchen must be made at The nearby picnic area is separate and is not included in the reservation.


  • 45 picnic sites
  • Host available
  • No fire pit
  • Drinking water
  • Vault toilet
  • No garbage service - Please pack it out

At a Glance

Reservations: Reservations for the McKee Bridge Community Kitchen must be made at
  • $50/day for rental of the community kitchen
Open Season: Spring
Usage: Light-Medium
Closest Towns:
  • Jacksonville, OR
  • Ruch, OR
  • Medford, OR
  • Grants Pass, OR
  • Ashland, OR
Water: Drinking water
Restroom: Vault toilets
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center: Siskiyou Mountains Ranger District

General Information


From Jacksonville, OR, travel 6.5 miles south on Highway 238 to the community of Ruch, OR. From Ruch, OR, turn left on to Upper Applegate Road (County Road 859). Continue south approximately 8 miles to McKee Bridge Day Use Area.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


River and Stream Fishing

Viewing Wildlife

Viewing Plants

Viewing Scenery


Group Picnicking


Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities


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  Elevation : 
1,600 feet