Thursday, March 3, 2011

Cornucopia Peak

   I only went on 1 hike over the summer despite planning on doing at least 6.  No one wanted to go with me so I went by myself.  I decided to hike Cornucopia Peak, which towers above the ghost town of Cornucopia. 
   Cornucopia used to be a gold mining town in eastern Oregon and was prosperous.  When WWII broke out, the miners enlisted and went off to war.  When they returned, everyone decided that the mining would cost more than it was worth and was pretty much abandoned.  There is probably a lot of gold still left in the mountains.  The town isn't completely abandoned, there are a few summer cabins up there and used frequented by hikers, ATV \and horseback riders.

   I started out my hike from Cornucopia along an abandoned and washed out road that eventually turned into a worn out trail.

 I found this concrete structure about a mile into my hike.  I asked my dad (who grew up in the area) about it and he said it used to be a hotel.

   Storm clouds sporadically blew over and threatened rain and snow.

On the other side of that rock is a cliff face that drops down about 100 ft.

    There is something special about this tree, like its the largest, highest tree in Oregon or something like that.  You cant tell very well from the picture, but it is huge.

Took a trail that didn't pan out, and punt this metal plate at the end of it.  I looked around and found a few more pieces that made it appear to be wrought iron wood stove.  I don't know who or what lugged it 3 mi up steep terrain.  there weren't any remnants of a cabin or anything, just the broken iron pieces and a strip of leather.

    Across the way you can see Pine Lakes.  They are cold year round and supply water to Pine Creek and eventually the Snake River at Copperfield.
    It had snowed the night before.

    The last time I saw this mineshaft it was flooded and I thought it went straight down as a ventilation shaft.
    But this time it was dry and you can see it levels out.  I wanted to explore it, but had no flashlight.  Next time though...

    This picture is big, just so you know.