This information provided by USDA Forest Service
This is the main access to the mid-Snake River area. The route is quite scenic with evidence of several old homesteads still visible. This trail provides excellent opportunities for viewing elk and other species of wildlife.
The Cow Creek Trail is an excellent trail but rated more difficult in its outer reaches. Eight miles have a 15% or better grade. The trail crosses Summit Ridge and drops into Deep Creek then climbs again to Tryon Saddle where it drops into the Snake River Canyon.
There is limited camping at the undeveloped trailhead, all of which is on private land. Signing is minimal at the trailhead but adequate along the trail. There are dispersed campsites at the Snake River on a narrow, flat bench with a sandy beach.
Directions: From Joseph, OR , Private land blocks vehicle access to trailheads along Cow Creek and Lightning Creek. For permission to pass through the gates, contact the landowner. Hiking or riding horses to the trailheads is OK.Take State Highway #350, approximately 30 miles to Imnaha. At the town of Imnaha, turn left on to paved County Road #735, which turns into a steep, narrow dirt road, Forest Road #4260. At Road #4260-250 (which is gated), travel approximately 5 miles to the trailhead. The #4260 road is slippery when wet. High clearance vehicles are recommended, but passenger cars could travel this road under dry conditions. During adverse conditions, the road becomes hazardous and requires four wheel drive.
Distance: 22 miles
Usage: Medium in spring and summ
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Hells Canyon, Oregon
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