Aspen Butte is a steep-sided shield volcano in the Cascade Range of southern Oregon. It is located 15 miles (24 km) south of Pelican Butte and 15 miles (24 km) southeast of Mount McLoughlin. Aspen Butte is ranked at #72 on the Highest Peaks in Oregon at 8,208 ft of elevation and at #18 on the Oregon Prominence List with 3,088 ft of prominence. This is a really beautiful wilderness area worthy of a backpacking trip and camping next to one of the lakes. Mt. Harriman (7,979 ft) and Mt. Carmine (7,882 ft) are located in the wilderness area and are also listed in the top 100 peaks of Oregon.
Finding the appropriate trailhead for your hike will depend on your objective. If you want the shortest hike and just want to bag the summit of Aspen Butte then use Option 1, Clover Creek Trailhead. If you want to camp at Harriette Lake use Option 2 or 3 and hike in from the Varney Creek or Mountain Lakes Trailheads.
Option 1. To find the Clover Creek Trailhead you first find Hwy 140 that connects Klamath Falls with White City. Just east of Lake of the Woods is Dead Indian Memorial Road that runs down to Ashland. Turn on Dean Indian Road and go 8.2 miles from Hwy 140, past Lake of the Woods, to Clover Creek Road. Turn left or east on Clover Creek Road and go another 8.3 miles to the signed turnoff for Clover Creek Trailhead. Turn left here, and follow this road about 4.0 miles to the trailhead.
Option 2. To find Mountain Lakes Trailhead, again locate Hwy 140 and Dead Indian Memorial Road. Turn onto Dead Indian Memorial Road and go about 1.3 miles to Lake of the Woods and turn left on the signed access road for Mountain Lakes Trailhead. You could also simply walk from Lake of the Woods to this trailhead.
Option 3. To find Varney Creek Trail. Locate Hwy 140 and proceed east about 5.5 miles towards Klamath Falls from Lake of the Woods. There is a signed turnoff to the right for the Varney Creek Trailhead. Follow the road about 4.0 miles to the trailhead.
You may need a campfire permit if you want to build a fire. Check with the Winema National Forest Service if you plan on building a fire. In the winter, you will need a Snow Park permit to park in the area. Summer and Fall are the best times to dayhike into the Mountain Lakes Wilderness and Aspen Butte. You may want to avoid June and early July because the mosquito’s can be voracious at this time. Winter time access will require snow shoes or cross country skis and winter survival skills. Snowmobiles or any motorized transportation are not permitted at any time of the year.
|Best months for climbing:||Jun, Jul, Aug, Sep, Oct|
|Nearest major airport:||Eugene Airport|
|Convenient Center:||Klamath Falls, Oregon|
Thanks to Kelly Canaday for adding this peak.
NOTE: Trip reports were previously called "Summit Logs" - same feature, new name
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