31. Pike Creek (High Steens Unit)
Suggested Citation: Kerr, Andy. 2000. Oregon Desert Guide: 70 Hikes. Seattle: The Mountaineers Books. p. 154.
What to Expect: A rugged canyon on the east face of the Steens
Distance: 4 miles round trip
Elevation Range: 4,800-6,102 feet
Drinking Water: Yes
Best Times: Spring, summer, fall
USGS 7.5' Map: Alvord Hot Springs
Oregon Map Starting Point: Andrews
Drive approximately 10 miles north of Andrews on the Andrews—Folly Farm County Road. At the Alvord Hot Springs (the tin shack in the meadow east of the road) go 1.8 miles and turn westward onto an unimproved way. After 0.8 mile, park 50 yards north of the rock with a juniper growing out it. Several good car campsites, both on private lands near the creek and uphill on public land, are available.
Begin your hike by walking the old mining "road" on the south side of the creek. The "road" (though not shown on the quad map) crosses the creek and continues uphill. On north side, the "road" goes consistently up, then a little bit of down, then up, and then down under a large boulder, beyond which is a path taking off uphill, marked with use. The trail moves ever upward into the headwaters of Pike Creek. Eventually you'll be cross- country hiking. An objective is the rocky point (elevation 6,102 feet) between the two major forks of Pike Creek. It is rough, but doable.
Return as you came.