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Split Rock Trail

Intermediate/Difficult
 4.0 (4)

Challenging and sometimes faint, this stunning trail traverses a ridge from near the PCT to Wagner Glade Gap.


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Map Key

3.1

Miles

5.0

KM

Point to Point

7,199' 2,194 m

High

6,517' 1,986 m

Low

618' 189 m

Up

1,008' 307 m

Down

10%

Avg Grade (6°)

48%

Max Grade (26°)

Dogs Off-leash

Features Birding · Views · Wildflowers · Wildlife

No mountain bikes or equestrians.

Description

This is a designated class-1 Forest Service trail which means it is minimally developed with intermittent tread that is often indistinct. This pedestrian-only trail is relatively easy to identify at both ends. The Split Rock trailhead on Road 20 is about 3.6 miles west from the Mt Ashland ski lodge. There is a small possibility of parking to the north--one to two cars worth. Once on the trail, try to stay on it as this area features some endangered, fragile plant species--Tauschia Howellii.

Heading north the trail ascends toward McDonald Peak and then heads steeply down into some groves of trees before re-emerging into an open meadow. This pattern of treed and meadowed areas repeats with the addition of some escarpment edges and one particularly rocky area. The actual Split Rock is shown on maps, but it is hard to pinpoint when hiking. The trail flattens out somewhat as one approaches Wagner Glade gap. From there one can continue 2 more miles up to the Wagner Butte Lookout (that's a 10-mile + out and back from FS Road 20, so make sure you have enough gas in the tank to make it back!).

It is easy to get off trail. Much of the trail is from a cow herder's fence line and you'll see remnants of old barbed-wire. Grazing hasn''t taken place here in a long time, the barbed wire fence is down, and nature has taken over and the trail has grown in. Ashland Woodlands and Trails has done minimum maintenance, per the Forest Service, mostly redirecting users away from endangered plants species. Use the Hiking Project mobile app to help find your way.

The views are unsurpassed: Mt Shasta, Mt McLoughlin, Mt Ashland, the Rogue Valley, the Marble Mtns, the Trinity Alps, and the coastal range. Various wildflowers abound in late spring, early summer.

The snow often lasts until July.

Contacts

Shared By:

Torsten Heycke

Trail Ratings

  4.0 from 4 votes

#6

in Ashland

#8678

Overall
  4.0 from 4 votes
5 Star
25%
4 Star
50%
3 Star
25%
2 Star
0%
1 Star
0%
Trail Rankings

#6

in Ashland

#251

in Oregon

#8,678

Overall
121 Views Last Month
1,802 Since Jun 29, 2017
Intermediate/Difficult

0%
0%
33%
0%
67%
0%

Photos

The Split Rock Trail enters open meadow with Shasta and McDonald Peak in the background.
Jun 29, 2017 near Ashland, OR
Split Rock: Is this the namesake? (Mt. McLoughlin stands in the background.)
Jun 29, 2017 near Ashland, OR
Looking west from Wagner Glade Gap
Oct 29, 2017 near Ashland, OR
The Split Rock Trail is faint but delightful.
Jun 29, 2017 near Ashland, OR
Split Rock harbors plenty of unexpected beauty.
Jun 29, 2017 near Ashland, OR
Split Rock wildflowers bloom well into late June.
Jun 29, 2017 near Ashland, OR

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Jul 23, 2019
Ash Shepherd
Beautiful day. The flowers were still in pretty strong bloom (just starting to dry out). 6.2mi
Jul 21, 2019
Pinky Bandit
Did this in reverse.
Sep 13, 2018
Torsten Heycke
Trail signs by FS Road 20 have been stolen, but if you can find the start of the trail there, it is very conspicuous. That may change by spring.
Oct 28, 2017
Bruce Hope
Wagner Butte Trail to Split Rock Trail, then up to FR 20. Biked back to TH. Trail obvious and easy to follow all the way. It's been worked on.