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Questions ?   Call 541-475-3351 or Email Library


Sunday, April 21
Meeting Time & Place:
Meet bus at 8:00am
Madras High School

9:00am Crooked River Ranch
$ 18.00
(Includes Lunch, Transportation
and all activities)

Open to public
Sandbagger Saloon
and Dinner House
5165 SW Club House Rd
Crooked River Ranch, OR
A bus will transport people from madras - see schedule below.

For more flexibility, drive to Crooked River Ranch and park, ride the bus to and from the trail head and leave on your schedule.

Exit Hwy 97 at Crooked River Ranch Junction just North of Terrebonne. Turn right to Crooked River Ranch in about 2 miles. Continue to the "T" junction an turn left on NW Chinook Drive. Stay on the same road all the way to Crooked River Ranch golf course and turn right on Clubhouse Road. Follow signs to the public parking.
The Ranch Chapel is right next to the parking area.

Crooked River Ranch Parking
Brenda Black

Nature, History & Hiking at Crooked River Ranch
You must register for the limited number of spaces.
Please use the registration button on the right
Questions: contact Brenda Black 541-815-1000

Registration opens on March 25.
   Crooked River Ranch is hosting a full day of activities for the 2013 Jefferson County Community Read on Sunday, April 21. The day starts with a hike along the Crooked River on the Otter Bench Trail led by author Bill Sullivan and our local Forest Service specialists. There will be CRR tours and comfortable places for R & R. Participants must be 16 or over.

   A bus will transport people from Madras @ 8:15 - see schedule below.  For more flexibility, drive to Crooked River Ranch and park, ride the bus to and from the trail head and leave on your schedule.

   While the complete Otter Bench Loop is 7.1 miles, feel free to go any distance you want at any pace you want. For those taking shorter hikes, there will be many other ways to spend a wonderful day at Crooked River Ranch.

   What?s the first thing to do? Register and pay online for the day?s events! Your $18 fee (non-refundable) includes lunch, transportation, and all of the other opportunities provided by your hosts. Be sure to print the voucher for your meal. Registration begins on March 25 and closes when 50 participants have signed up or by April 16.

   The Sandbagger has generously agreed to provide five lunch choices at a special price. These include two sack lunch choices and three choices to be served at the restaurant. Beverages are not included with any selection. FANs is donating water for hikers. Sack lunch requests will be ready by 9 am. Meals at the Sandbagger are available any time between noon and 3:30 pm.

   If you need any help with registration, please contact Brenda Black at 541-815-1000 or email Library.

Event Details:

The Hike

   Bill Sullivan will lead the hike and share his hiking experiences. Joining us along the trail will be Forest Service specialists Carrie Gordon (geologist), Dede Steel (wildlife biologist), Krista Lopez (botanist), Jeff Marcell (birder) Tory Kurtz, (rangeland management). Jim Beaupre, the Outdoor Recreation Planner for BLM will be on the Opal Springs Loop with information about fish passage, his favorite fishing spot, and answering questions. All will be available along the trail for nature presentations, to answer questions and to point out areas in their specialties.

Click for larger printable map.  This file is in Adobe Acrobat format (.pdf).


   At the trailhead we will be taking the fairly new Otter Bench Trail above the Crooked River Canyon away from the rim, near the cliff of the upper canyon edge. This first section is mostly flat for 1.7 miles. Below us, paralleling our route, the Horney Hollow Trail follows the canyon rim closer to the river but is closed from February 1 to August 31 to minimize the impact on nesting raptors.

   Where these two trails converge, there is a narrow, half mile stretch between the canyon wall and the 370 foot vertical drop to the gorge - a pretty impressive view! This leads to the next bench – the 2.3 mile Opal Springs Loop.

   The Opal Springs Loop features textbook examples of columnar basalt. Across the canyon you can see the water collection point for the Deschutes Valley Water District at Opal Springs. Near the turnaround point of the loop is an overview of the Crooked River Gorge where the river flows into Lake Billy Chinook.

   Most of this stretch of the Crooked River has been designated by Congress as Wild and Scenic and are on lands managed by the BLM, Crooked River National Grasslands and the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife. While trail development has helped control erosion on lands that were abused over years by dumping, off-road riding and shooting on the lower benches, there still is work to be done on the upper larger Peninsula. Currently, the FANs conservation group and the Forest Service are working together to address these same concerns on this beautiful area between our two river canyons.

Hiking Essentials

   Port-a-potties are available at the trailhead only. Cell phone communication may be limited. Even though FANs will provide water, participants are still encouraged to bring additional water. Other suggestions for the day are: backpacks, comfortable hiking shoes, layered clothing, hiking poles and gloves.

Guided Tour of Crooked River Ranch
Check tour box on registration form

   Nine very lucky individuals will have the opportunity to participate in a guided van tour that leaves at 2 pm and returns to the Sandbagger by 3:15. Led by Mona Steinberg, vice president of FANs, this tour will be on roads that are on the outer perimeter of the Ranch along both river canyons with spectacular views and showing the locations of the major trail heads.

Schedule and Transportation

8:00 Bus arrives for Madras participants Near MHS front door
8:15 Bus leaves for Crooked River Ranch No food or drink open on bus
Mona Steinberg from Crooked River Ranch will share maps and information about Crooked River Ranch during the bus ride.
8:45 Bill Sullivan will autograph books and meet and greet participants Juniper Room @ CRR
Admin Building
9:00 -Bus arrives from Madras
-Other participants
Public parking lot across from the Sandbagger
Dogs are welcome on the hike - just not on the bus. Join us in the Juniper Room, but park in the limited space at the trailhead. The BLM allows dogs on the Otter Bench Trail; must be under control.
Check in, collect sack lunches, meet Forest Service & BLM specialists, final information, etc. Juniper Room @ CRR
Admin Building
9:45 Board bus for trip to trailhead Note: No food or drink open on bus
10:00 At Trailhead Last chance port-a-potties
The bus will stay at the trailhead until 11:30 am, at which time it will begin making hourly round trips between the trailhead, Sandbagger and Old Ranch (Heritage) House.
Noon-3:30 Lunch available at The Sandbagger. Your voucher shows the meal selected. Beverages cost not included with meal. Sandbagger
2:00-3:15 Guided tour of Crooked River Ranch (Pre-register)
VAN LEAVES at 2:00.
In front of the Juniper Room @ CRR Admin Bldg
3:30 BUS LEAVES SANDBAGGER AREA Public parking lot across from the Sandbagger
4:30 Bus leaves Crooked River Ranch Sand Ridge Overlook
Planned bus loop schedule
Leave trailhead
Old Ranch
(Heritage House)
Old Ranch
(Heritage House)

   For those taking shorter hikes, the Crooked River Ranch Seniors say, "Make yourself at home; put your feet up and relax" at the Old Ranch (Heritage) House, just 5 minutes by bus from the trailhead and the Sandbagger area. Visit with “Ranchers.” Enjoy a free lending library, take a history tour, sit on the deck or walk on a nearby trail. Watch a clip of the movie, “The Way West,” filmed at Crooked River Ranch showing wagons and people lowered down into to the canyon. Beverages and desserts will be provided by the CRR Seniors.

   In the Sandbagger area, Crooked River Ranch residents will be available for mini tours showing other trails, including where some of “The Way West” was filmed. There is an observation platform for taking safe photos near the rim.

   Three fortunate individuals will have the opportunity for a spur-of-the-moment guided tour of the ranch with Craig Towell, local realtor.

   At 3:30 p.m. the bus will leave the Sandbagger for a short ride to the Sand Ridge Overlook with a scenic panorama of the Deschutes River Canyon.

   Participants riding the bus should expect to be back to Madras around 5:00 p.m.

eBooks $4.99
Just for Jefferson County, Bill has reduced the cost of ebooks but only until April 23. Both books are available in Kindle format from Amazon.com, and in all other formats from SmashWords.com.
Jefferson County Community Read 2013
Sponsors and Community Partners
    Adele & Sumner Rodriguez Fund of The Oregon Community Foundation
Art Adventure Gallery
Black Butte Elementary School, Camp Sherman
Bureau of Land Management
Community Health Improvement Project
Crooked River National Grasslands
Crooked River Ranch
Crooked River Ranch “Telegraph”
Crooked River Ranch Lions
Crooked River Ranch Publicity Committee
Crooked River Ranch Seniors
Crooked River Ranch/Smith Rocks Chamber
FANs (friends and neighbors) of the Deschutes Canyon Area
Forest Service
Great Earth Café & Market
Jefferson County Cultural Coalition
Jefferson County Library District
Madras Chamber
Madras Computers
Madras High School
Madras Pioneer
Mail Copies and More
Mountain Photo & Graphics
Oregon Reading Association
Sandbagger Saloon
Spilyay Tymoo
Warm Springs Community Prevention Resource Center and Library

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