Canyon Mountain is the westernmost mountain in the Strawberry Mountains (a sub-range of the Blue Mountains). It is 7,999 feet tall. It is located within Grant County in eastern Oregon.
The summit features a benchmark, summit register dating back to the early 1970’s, and an excellent view. The view from the summit includes the John Day Valley, the remainder of the Strawberry Range, The Aldrich, Elkhorn and Greenhorn Mountains, and on a clear day the Wallowas. Judging by the Summit register, Canyon Mountain is usually climbed by fewer than 20 parties a year.
There is no trail access to the summit, but the Canyon Mountain Trail Crosses its northern flanks. This trail features a few open meadows where wildflowers bloom after the snow melts. The shortest non-technical way to the summit is via Dean Creek. This route is about 13.5 miles round trip and gains 2600 feet in elevation. An ascent via Dean Creek is an easy class 3 scramble. A more challenging yet still non-technical route of ascent is via the northeast ridge. Another route that is longer but more scenic and gently graded is the one recommended by Bond. This class 2/3 route follows the Canyon Mountain Trail an additional mile beyond Dean Creek and follows a ridge over a few highpoints including Green Mountain. Round trip distance via this route is 17.6 miles and has a cumulative elevation gain of 4674 feet.
First, you will need to find your way to John day, Oregon.
From The junction of US Highway 26 and US Highway 395 in John Day, take US 395 south for approximately 2 miles. Turn left onto County road 52 (Marysville Road) in Canyon City. Drive 1.9 miles, and then take a right on County road 77. After approximately 0.3 mile, take another right on Forest Service Road 7700-333, where there is a sign for Canyon Mountain Trail #218. Drive approximately 2.7 miles uphill to somewhat of a four-way junction (the left turn will be slightly uphill) ignoring any less traveled side roads. At this point, you should have traveled 6.7 miles from the junction of US 26 and US 395. Turn left here and drive about 0.1 mile to the trailhead, where there is a brown forest service sign that says nothing. The coordinates for the trailhead are 44.3625°N, 118.9261°W (NAD27).
As of June 2006, there were no signs at the trailhead stating that a permit of any kind is needed.
There are a few good spots at Dean Creek where you can camp.
Lodging is available in nearby John Day.
|Best months for climbing:||Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct|
|Nearest major airport:||Boise, ID|
|Convenient Center:||John Day, Oregon|
NOTE: Trip reports were previously called "Summit Logs" - same feature, new name
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