Andy Kerr

Conservationist, Writer, Analyst, Operative, Agitator, Strategist, Tactitian, Schmoozer, Raconteur

10. Sand Dunes Traverse (Summer Lake Unit)

Suggested Citation: Kerr, Andy. 2000. Oregon Desert Guide: 70 Hikes. Seattle: The Mountaineers Books. p. 107.

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What to Expect: Easy walking across alkali flats and sand dunes into the deep wild and unparalleled


Distance: 14.5 miles one way

Elevation Range: 4,260-4,450 feet

Drinking Water: Yes, but .. .

Best Times: Spring, fall

USGS 7.5' Maps: Ana River, Diablo Peak, Loco Lake

Oregon Map Starting Point: Paisley

This exploration ends at the same place as the Diablo Peak exploration (above) starts. One vehicle must be spotted there.

The embarkation point is at Fivemile Point north of Paisley. From the Chewaucan River Bridge, go 0.6 mile north on OR 31 to a dirt road, just past the high-standard county road that heads easterly. After you leave the pavement, three dirt paths present themselves. Take the middle one due north 3.6 miles to Fivemile Point and park.

No water is available for the first 10 miles, so pack plenty and hydrate well before you start. Almost all travel is on unimproved ways.

Begin hiking (Loco Lake quad) northerly on an unimproved way to Tenmile Ridge (about 5 miles). Passing just west of Tenmile Ridge, continue northerly 3.6 miles to Fourmile Point (Diablo Peak quad). As for place name logic, don't go there. Continue northerly 1.6 miles to a developed spring (it is on the Ana River quad). If you are tired (it has been rather flat hiking), camp here. Another spring is 0.5 mile northerly up the way. Several more springs are at Lost Cabin in another 0.8 mile northerly. The cabin is at an oasis, and many of the springs are on private property, so be extra respectful. From Lost Cabin head northerly 1 mile to a private land boundary. Continue northerly along the west side of the private property at Thousand Springs Ranch (fenced) to the road you came in on and to your vehicle in about 2 miles.