In September 2017, the Eagle Creek fire spread over the Oregon side of the Columbia River Gorge and all hiking trails were closed. Now some of them that were not as badly damaged are opening again and over the last couple days I backpacked up the PCT to a campsite near Teakettle Springs and from there hiked a loop around Benson Plateau. Fire damage was spotty and most areas still had green trees.
Sign at the trailhead, we are going to have to get used to these
The trailhead - looks normal so far!
Just above the powerline road, some moss has been burned off this rock
Herman Creek - the fire didn't get to the bottom of the canyon
I wonder if this spot-burned tree was already dead?
Ground cover gone, lower tree singed, but tree crowns were still green
Some views have opened up - Columbia River and Table Mtn
Some holes where trees burned out down into the ground
Top of the ridge at 3000', still mostly green
But looking down the west side, mostly burned
Red rock viewpoint, only slight burn
Some burn at camp, but more green
Looking towards Nick Eaton Ridge from camp
There were lots of mosquitoes and this huge fly, about 1/2", drew blood before paying the ultimate price
Up on Benson Plateau, a section of full burn
Faint Benson Way trail, mostly green
Main camp at Hunters Camp, still green
Ruckel Creek trail still closed
Ruckel Creek a little above camp
Blond trail where covered in deep needles
Lower Nick Eaton Ridge, lots of burn
Mt Adams from red rock view on the way down