enjoying the view up to Copper Creek Basin on our hike out Main Eagle

Final day of our four day backpack into Oregon’s Eagle Cap Wilderness. It had been another peaceful night at Bear Lake. Our only company was the doe that visited us again for the second night. We had a 6.5 mile hike with 2,250′ elevation loss followed by a five hour drive ahead of us. We grabbed a quick breakfast of coffee and Cliff bar and hit the trail just before 7:00. 

goodbye to our peaceful camp at Bear Lake

The descent from Bear Lake to Eagle Creek Meadows went fast. We lost nearly half of our elevation for the day over the two miles to the crossing. Hiking conditions were very comfortable in the shade and with cool morning temperatures.  

early morning crossing of Eagle Creek

At Eagle Creek Meadows, we saw a several groups camped in the trees alongside the creek. This area is an easy hike from the trailhead and appears to be quite popular on weekends. 

lovely Eagle Creek

From the meadows, it was another 4.5 miles and 1,250′ loss to the trailhead. Temperatures were pleasant and the hiking generally easy as we made the gradual descent. We passed a handful of day hikers coming in, the most traffic we had seen in four days. This was nothing compared to what you’d experience on the east side of the wilderness near the towns of Lostine and Joseph. 

rejoining the Main Eagle Trail
Eagle Creek as it squeezes through a tight gorge
final stretch of trail

Back at the Main Eagle Trailhead, we celebrated with ice cold drinks. There isn’t much in life that can compete with an ice cold beverage after a warm summer backpack…except a great burger which we had to skip this time. It had been the perfect four days in the wilderness. We couldn’t have asked for better weather, we had complete solitude at lakeside campsites each night, biting insects and people were minimal, trail conditions were mostly great, wildflowers were in peak bloom, and we’d visited three beautiful alpine lakes (ironically, the most beautiful one was dammed). Life is good. 

Related Posts

Oregon’s Eagle Cap Wilderness: Main Eagle Backpack day 1 (Cached Lake)

Oregon’s Eagle Cap Wilderness: Main Eagle Backpack day 2 (Bear Lake)

Oregon’s Eagle Cap Wilderness: Main Eagle Backpack day 3 (Lookingglass Lake)

Resources Used

Hiking Oregon’s Eagle Cap Wilderness

100 Hikes / Travel Guide: Eastern Oregon

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