Little North Santiam Trail is a 7.9 mile out and back trail located near Lyons, OR and is rated as moderate. The trail is primarily used for hiking and whitewater kayaking and is accessible year-round.
Directions from Mehama: Turn onto Little North /fork Road #2209 from Hwy. 22 near Mehama. To access first trailhead, follow Road 2209 to Elkhorn. Turn right onto Road 201 and follow to trailhead. To access second trailhead, stay on Road 2209 to fork in road. Veer right onto Road 2207. Follow Road 2207 to western end of the closed Shady Cove Bridge. Park and walk across bridge to trailhead.
Definitely difficult hike but beautiful scenery along the way!!
If you have the means- park one car (or bike) and the end of the trail so you only have to hike 4mi there and take the car/bike back to the beginning of the trail.
I an going to call bunk on the EASY rating. Distance and elevation gain alone take it to MODERATE. Add several spots where balance and coordination tests and moderate hazards present themselves, I think it would be better to not deceive newer hikers with unrealistic ratings.
That said, I had a great time. One activity not listed is swimming. There are several cool and clear pools that offer a fun swimming experience, at least on a warm summer day. I wish I had the foresight to wear a suit under my hiking garb.
I wore tennis shoe style hiking boots. Bad choice. My heavier hiking boots would have been a better choice, owing to the need for ankle support and stiffer soles.
I brought my trekking poles. Good choice.
I brought my point and shoot camera. I should have brought the DSLR for some really top cabin scenery.
This was a very rough trail. A lot of steep inclines and switch backs. The trail was very rocky. My sister and I are new to hiking and we are a bit chubby and this was way more than we could handle. There was some beautiful spots though. Just wish the trail description here and other spots had been a bit more realistic.
Beautiful hike! I want to go back so badly!