Sunday, July 17, 2016

Da-Ku-Be-Te-De Trail

July 10, 2016

9.2 miles

The name of this trail may sound like a line from The Sound of Music being sung by Julie Andrews, but it was actually named after a band of Native Americans who lived in the Applegate Valley.  Either way, the word "trail" meant it was time for another hike!
Time for another good long  hike!

Having hiked the previous Sunday and Wednesday for a combined 16+ miles, we decided to take advantage of the mild & smoke-free summer weather and try out the Da-Ku-Be-Te-De trail, one of the few trails at Applegate Lake that we have not hiked.
One of many views of Applegate Lake from the trail
We parked at the Swayne Viewpoint which is located just past the dam.  Parking here is free, there is a bathroom, and it is closer so there is less driving.  The trail follows the lake shore from Swayne Viewpoint all the way to the Watkins Campground.  Along the way you pass through the Hartish Campground and Day Use Area (fee for parking) and pass a couple of boat launching ramps.

Hartish Day Use Area /Boat launch.  Campground is just past the parking area

Sign along the trail at the campground 

Beach area at Hartish Campground - Katie took a dip at the end of our hike!

As you may notice in the pictures, the day was very cloudy and the temperature was in the upper 60's- very rare for July in Southern Oregon.  Although the trail does have areas with lots of tree coverage, we would not recommend you hike this trail on a very hot and sunny day.  When reading up on this hike, words like "ticks", "rattlesnakes" and "poison oak" stood out to us, but only poison oak was seen on our hike and that we made sure to avoid.  We did see bear scat, but no bears.  Twice on our hike we startled a group of deer but we able to get one to pose for a picture.

One of our "deer" friends
After following the lake shoreline for four-and-a-half miles, the trail turned in-land along a rail fence which led to the Watkins Campground.  Since no one was camping, we took a break at a campsite while Katie commenced rolling in the dirt.

Katie at Watkins Campground looking for a good dirty place to roll.
The trail forms a loop at the Watkins Campground, so after our break we hiked from the end of the campground down the loop till it rejoined the original trail. While hiking back to the Swayne Viewpoint we got to view the lake in the opposite direction.  Some of the mountains that you can view along this hike include Stein Butte, the Red Buttes, Kangaroo Mountain and Stricklin Butte.

One of the "open" portions of the trail

Wide angle view of Applegate Lake
We finished the 9.2 mile hike in just over 4 hours which included our break and Katie's dip in the lake.  The trail is pretty much flat with just a few mild inclines/descents and with the campgrounds and boat ramps provides many opportunities for turnaround points.  There are also many places where one can stop and sit along the lake shore to enjoy the view and quiet.  So don't let the distance scare you off from trying this hike. Get out there and enjoy!!

Just a side note, since we hiked over 26 miles in one week, we celebrated afterwards by getting Double-Doubles at In-N-Out Burgers afterwards.  But we won't torture you by posting a picture of them.  Oh the rewards of hiking!!!

Trekking Together
Glenn & Carol

1 comment:

  1. got me thinking one could return by way of Collins Mountain. Sure, if I really hated myself!