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Winema National Forest



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General Information

Mt. McLoughlin, Winema National Forest
Copyright: - US Forest Service
Mt. McLoughlin, Winema National Forest
Description - The 1.1 million acre Winema National Forest lies on the eastern slopes of the Cascade Mountain Range in South Central Oregon. Located in the heart of "Klamath Country", which is noted for its blue skies and year-round sunshine, the Winema provides diverse landscapes and recreation opportunities. The Forest borders Crater Lake National Park near the crest of the Cascades and stretches eastward into the Klamath River Basin. Near the floor of the Basin, the Forest gives way to vast marshes and meadows associated with Upper Klamath Lake and the Williamson River drainage. To the north and east, extensive stands of ponderosa and lodgepole pine grow on deep pumice and ash which blanketed the area during the eruption of Mount Mazama (now Crater Lake) nearly 7,000 years ago.

As the newest National Forest in Oregon, the Winema was created in 1961 from portions of the former Klamath Indian Reservation and adjacent forests. Although a young forest, the Winema has a rich heritage with a blending of Native American prehistory, early exploration and settlement, and turn of the century logging. History records a visit to the area by Peter Ogden of the Hudson Bay Company in 1826 and exploration by Lt. John C. Fremont in 1843. The Forest is named for a heroine of the Modoc War of 1872. Wi-ne-ma served as an interpreter and peacemaker between U.S. troops and the Modoc Indians, saving many lives.

Attractions - Located in the heart of "Klamath Country", which is noted for its blue skies and year-round sunshine, the Winema provides diverse landscapes and recreation opportunities. The Forest borders Crater Lake National Park, near the crest of the Cascades and stretches eastward into the Klamath River Basin. Near the floor of the Basin, the Forest gives way to vast marshes and meadows associated with Upper Klamath Lake and the Williamson River drainage. To the north and east extensive stands of ponderosa and lodgepole pine grow on deep pumice and ash which blanketed the area during the eruption of Mt. Mazama (now Crater Lake) nearly 7,000 years ago.

The Winema contains at least portions of the Mt. Thielsen Wilderness, the Sky Lake Wilderness and the Mountain Lakes Wilderness.

Klamath Lake is the largest natural lake in Oregon. The Winema National Forest sits adjacent to portions of the lake. The lake offers sailing and motor boating, fishing, camping and bird watching.

The Volcanic Legacy Scenic Byway traverses the Upper Klamath Basin. From Klamath Falls, it leads around the west side of Klamath Lake, then north to Crater Lake National Park and around Crater Lake, then north and east to Diamond Lake Junction. The marshes and wetlands provide striking fall color, accented by the aspen on the west side of Upper Klamath Lake. A late fall or early spring tour will provide snowy views of Mt. Mclaughlin and snow lined roads bordered by magnificent ponderosa pine trees. The Pinnacles, located within Crater Lake National Park are best viewed during the summer.

At the Desert Forest Journey, see some of the High Desert's classic "yellow belly" pines and learn more about desert forest ecosystems, fire ecology and railroad logging history. Located south of Chemult, the site is a comprehensive desert forest learning experience and is an extension of the High Desert Learning Center in Bend. The trail complex begins at an Info Stop located 6.5 miles west of Diamond Lake Jct. on Highway 138, then 2.4 miles south on Forest Road 70.

Recreation - The Winema offers a large variety of outdoor recreation opportunities. Some of these include hiking, backpacking, camping, fishing, horseback riding, motorcycle riding, canoeing, scenic driving, viewing interpretive sites, hunting, cross-country skiing, and snowmobiling.

The Winema has established campgrounds located throughout the Forest. If you prefer more solitude or want to explore the backcountry, most of the Forest is open for dispersed or backcountry camping. Some regulations apply. Typically, dispersed camping is NOT allowed in the vicinity of developed recreation areas such as campgrounds, picnic areas or trailheads.

Climate - Climate on the Winema changes drastically depending on elevation. The high elevations receive much more precipitation and colder temperatures. Much of the precipitation comes from October to April, mostly in the form of snow in the higher elevations. Winter temperatures can drop below zero degrees Fahrenheit. Late spring, summer and early autumn tend to bring clear, sunny days, with warm temperatures at the low elevations and moderate temperatures at the higher elevations. Summer afternoon thunderstorms are not uncommon.

Location - The 1.1 million acre Winema National Forest lies on the eastern slopes of the Cascade Mountain Range in South Central Oregon. The Forest is headquartered in Klamath Falls. US Highway 97 and State Highways 140 and 62 all run through portions of the Forest.

Seasonal Information:
Normally Open: May15 through October 31. Normal Services Available: June through November.


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More Information

Contact Information:
Winema National Forest, 2819 Dahlia Street , Klamath Falls, OR, 97601, Phone: 541-883-6714

Additional Information:
Oregon National Forests and Parks - Oregon offers a vast amount of federal land, much of it encompassed within its 13 National Forests. The Park Service sites in Oregon include Crater Lake National Park, John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Newberry National Volcanic Monument, Oregon Caves National Monument and the Fort Clatsop National Memorial.
Southern Oregon - Southern Oregon offers a balanced mix of natural, historical and cultural attractions. The centerpiece of Southern Oregon is Crater Lake National Park, Oregons only National Park. Crater Lake is 1,932 feet deep, the deepest lake in the United States.

Links:
Winema National Forest - Official agency Website

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