Tam McArthur Rim
If you’re having a rough time, just head to the Tam McArthur Rim trail. You will be so happy once you reach the top. Well, I was!
The drive here from Sisters, Ore. is not bad. About 16 miles on paved road, and 2 miles on washboard bumpy dirt road. There are two campgrounds at Three Creek Lake, seemingly popular among families with children. However, if you’re like me, you’ll end starting the trail around 2 PM and be at the top all by yourself, despite 10 groups passing by (going down) on the way up.
There are so many great things about this trail. Let me list them:
1. Interesting trees. From what I could tell, mountain hemlock, whitebark pine, lodgepole pine, and some others I couldn’t identify. Fragrant, lots of character, special.
2. Clark’s Nutcrackers. These birds are pretty. They make crazy sounds, and fly like they’re on a roller coaster. Can’t find these near Portland.
3. Dusty. Ash from past volcanic explosions means this is a dusty trail. My legs were dust-covered, as were my shoes and my nose. Felt like being on Mars.
4. Delicate flowers. Tiny flowers, sometimes stinky, dotted the landscape. I can’t resist tiny flowers. Something about them, maybe it’s that they’re so fragile, yet so showy and colorful. A beautiful thing that doesn’t last long.
5. Views. Get views of snowy mountains, buttes, small lakes, burnt trees, colorful rocks. I gasped and wowed.
So, there you go. What are you waiting for? Get on down to Sisters, Ore. and walk this trail. Don’t forget to smile and say hello to the Clark’s nutcrackers.