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Trail Updates

As the Oregon Desert Trail becomes more established, we'll be sharing the latest updates on resources, trail conditions, and more.

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As the Oregon Desert Trail becomes more established, we'll be sharing the latest updates on resources, trail conditions, and more.

August 2017


June 2017

  • The first ODT trail work stewardship trip built new trail in the Oregon Badlands Wilderness, Section 1. Look for a cairn marking the new section near CV004, connecting the Black Lava Trail to the Flatiron Rock Trail. Maps will be updated at some point this summer.


May 2017

  • The day you have been waiting for is here: the updated ODT materials are now online here. Now you can learn about public lands along the route, choose from some new alternate routes, and more. Check it out!
  • Gear suggestions: You will be thankful to have tall gaiters for some of the cross country sections on the ODT. A sun umbrella is also useful as in many locations you will be the tallest thing around, it's a good idea to bring your shade with you.
  • As over 30% of the route is cross country and we want to promote traveling lightly on the land and not leaving an impact, please disperse your travel in these areas. If you see footprints, don't follow them, but travel in the vicinity. The ODT is a suggestion of travel, and as long as you are on public land, you can make the route your own!

    April 2017

    • NEW: Online Trail Register - Trail registers will be popping up around the Oregon Desert Trail route throughout the year, and we will keep you posted on those locations here, and you can fill out our new online register.
    • NEW: Trail Conditions Document - Depending on the time of year, hikers may encounter snow, mud, fire, extreme heat or other conditions that it would helpful to know about before embarking on the ODT. This document is meant to be a crowd-sourced resource for sharing observations of trail conditions.
    • NEW: Town & Services Guide - The Town & Services Guide is an indispensable resource for planning your ODT adventure. Find lodging options, restaurants, shopping, hot springs, campgrounds and more including a resupply strategy.
    • Revised maps and guidebook will be available by the end of April.

    March 2017

    • Eastern Oregon experienced a heavy winter, and it's shaping up to be a wet spring! Many of the higher elevations still have considerable snow, and some of the lower elevations are quite muddy. May will probably be a good time to head out and explore some of the sections, but note higher elevations, especially in the Steens Mountain (over 9,000'), will most likely have snow well into the summer.
    • Coming soon: Trail Conditions Google Doc - did you spend some time along the route? Want to see if anyone has visited a section you want to explore? The trail conditions doc will help us keep track what's on the ground.
    • All materials are being revised and should be released in early April.

    October 2016

    • 10/27/16 - Reroute south of Fields (Section 16) Fropueblo reroutem Fields continue South on Hwy 205
      for 3 miles. Turn right on a dirt road, staying left at a fork in the road until you meet up with the original route just south of the Starr Homestead. (reroute is a total of 7.5 miles)
    • 10/6/16 - NEW: Lodging option near Denio. More info coming soon, but for $85 you can rent the 2-room rustic bunkhouse. Full kitchen, shower, etc. Call Katie for more details or to book. 503-550-4799

    August 2016

    • 8/23/16 - NEW: Section Overview Maps - Each of the 25 sections now have an overview map, databook info & elevation profile. Download here
    • 8/23/16 - Region 1 & 4 maps have been updated with some reroute information. Guidebook, databook and waypoints also reflect changes. See all materials here.

        Tumulus Directions

        • Driving directions to Tumulus Trailhead: The western terminus of the ODT is just 13.5 miles from Bend. Head east on Hwy 20 for 6.5 miles, take a left on Dodds Road for 6 miles to an unmarked dirt road where you will turn right. Take a right at the fork in the dirt road until you reach a parking area at the canal. The Tumulus trailhead is over the canal walkway.
          • Pine Mountain Observatory is on ODT mile 27.2, and since the first 27.2 miles are dry we are happy to announce Observatory Supervisor Mark Dunaway has offered to receive food or water caches from hikers at the top of Pine Mountain. Please call ahead or email to arrange a time to drop off your cache: 541-382-8331, Please include your ETA data and discuss with Mark where the cache will be located when you are hiking through. Make time to visit the Observatory for a show if the timing is right! Friday and Saturday evenings from late May through last Friday/Saturday in September, weather permitting. Programs start at 9pm through mid-summer, then move back to 8:30 & 8pm start times by September as darkness falls earlier. $5 donation per person. Skies need to be clear, "Dark Moon" weekends are best.
          • Reroute north of Rome (Section 23) The alternate is 10 miles vs. on the 7 mile older route. Until we get the maps and guidebook updated here is a graphic & track log to get you where you need to go. From waypoint OC110 to OC116

          Rome Alternate

          July 2016

          Section 8: Mill Lake Trailhead to Vee Lake has had some blowdowns that made hiking the route pretty difficult. The Fremont Forest Service reported clearing a path through, so this would be a great opportunity to go check out the Abert Rim area!

          April 2016

          UPDATED: Maps for the ODT

          Added declination, revised mileages & section headers, modified regions

          (higher resolution maps are available by emailing us)

          NEW: Databook/Water Chart on Google Docs

          Download the Data Book/Water Chart as a PDF or Excel file in the upper left corner of the page. Click here for directions on how to use and update the water chart while on the trail.

          NEW: View the Oregon Desert Trail on the Hiking Project Website (Sections 1-9)

          Download the Android App
          Download the Apple App

          NEW: Water Cache Guidelines & Maps

          Email us for access to cache guidelines & maps

          NEW: ODT Merchandise for Sale

          Buy Oregon Desert Trail stickers, patches & map posters here.

          NEW: Sponsorship Opportunities

          If your company or organization would like to sponsor the ODT please click here.

          IN PROGRESS: Town & Resource Guide

          We're developing a town guide so hikers will know where to stay, resupply, eat, shower, etc. Also where to find hotsprings, points of interest in more. Guide is in development, but we'll send you what we have via email.

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          Oregon Natural Desert Association
          50 SW Bond Street, Suite 4,
          Bend, OR 97702
          Tel: (541) 330-2638

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