hiking and trails, nature, photography

Iron Mountain Hike

Hike time in the Willamette National Forest! We decided to try out a new path so we headed to Iron Mountain, with hopes that the snow had melted. Iron Mountain sits about 45 miles east of Corvallis, and brings a crowd during spring and summer….and during the summer, the mountain is said to showcase over 300 species of flowering plants! Wowzas! It passes through several meadows and alpine before reaching the volcanic rock near the peak.  You end up hiking about a 2000 ft elevation climb in less than two miles, so it is a nice little workout!


Trilliums covered the ground, a sign that the snow recently melted!


Blue delphiniums sat brightly on the open hillside meadow at about 2300 feet elevation. Delphinium in general is very poisonous when eaten and can irritate the skin, so remember to look but don’t touch!

delphiniumtreecape cloudyskyalpineflora reflection

And then we hit the snow. It started out as little patches here and there, but slowly turned into solid snow by the foot as we neared the peak.

forestfloor snowandneedles

So, in early June, you get to see the unique snow bed flora — the plants that emerge just as the snows melt. It is amazing to think that these plants push their little sprouts through the snow melt!


It is said that you can see Mt Hood, Mount St Helens, Mt Jefferson, Mt Washington, Three Sisters, and Diamond Peak on a clear day…Hopefully next time it will be a little more sunny and less snowy!


And here we hit the real snow factor. With snow sitting at least four feet high, we couldn’t go any further. We could however have a miniature snowball fight, which made the hike totally worth it.


hiking and trails nature photography
  1. Beautiful photos and wonderful narration of your hiking adventure! I’ve hiked up Mary’s Peak and around the Arboretum trails, although running up Bald Hill last weekend was a surprising challenge. I’ll have to explore this Iron Mountain with my wife sometime. Hope you have a most excellent weekend outside in sun-soaked Corvallis!
    Tyler 🙂

    • Thanks, Tyler! Bald hill can really be a toughie! I’ve tried jogging there, and every time I think I’m almost at the top, there’s another switch back! Have you been to Mary’s lately?

      Enjoy your weekend as well! I’m hoping to get to the market this weekend. I’ve missed the last few, but it would nice to get some local flowers and STRAWBERRIES!

      • Thank you! Last weekend was the ‘Run for the Hills’ 8K at Bald Hill. The false peak broke my spirit, although what really smarted was running the wrong route down from the top. Instead of running an 8K, myself (and a bunch of other runners) ran a 10K. Still finished with my fastest 10K time since high school, but missed placing in my age group by 40 seconds. Oh well, it was a great day for a run regardless!

        I hiked Mary’s Peak with my Dad in late March and there was still snow on top. However, I haven’t been up there since. Unfortunately, it was too cloudy and we couldn’t partake the spectacular view. I need to get back up there on a clear day, especially with this fantastic summertime weather we’ve been having in Corvallis.

        My wife and I usually go to the Farmer’s Market every Saturday, but we had to take care of some dirty work this morning and give our two dogs a bath! Gotta love those strawberries. We picked these fresh, flavorful delights a few weeks ago and they were gobbled up in less than a day it seemed. Funny how food disappears without hardly a word, almost like the mites you observed (and abhorred) crawling on your plants. BTW, my wife did purchase a whole front porch load of geraniums and fuchsias from the OSU Horticulture Club. A few of my poems/photos have already been inspired by their colorful petals and busy nectar and pollen-loving denizens.

        Nature knows no bounds, just as our imaginations. Keep up the inspired work on your blog, my friend!

        Tyler 🙂

      • Strawberries! Yum! I have two little plants and just plucked my first berry last night!

        I bet your wife saw my sweetheart at the plant sale, he worked a good portion of it! I didn’t see the geraniums, but the fuchsias were BEAUTIFUL!

        Enjoy your week, and I look forward to reading your new poems, Tyler!

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