Photo of Boundary Springs

Boundary Springs - Source of the Rogue River

Central Oregon has its share of spring-fed rivers — the Metolius, the Cultus, the Quinn and Fall River — but none of these enters the world quite so dramatically as the Rogue River at Boundary Springs. Gushing down the hillside over colorful, moss-covered rocks and logs, these headwater springs are unique. A good 2.5-mile hiking trail starts on Forest Service land just north of Crater Lake National Park and follows the river canyon (mostly spared from an encircling 2015 wildfire) upstream to the springs across the Park boundary.
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View of Mt. Mazama Pumice Flow

Tephra from Mt. Mazama's Climactic Eruption

It was one of Oregon’s highest peaks, over 12,000’ in elevation. It was taller than Mt. Hood and more massive than Mt. Jefferson. But in a matter of hours 7,700 years ago, it disappeared in one cataclysmic explosion, sending ash deposits as far away as Canada and hot pumice flows hundreds of feet thick up to 25 miles from today’s Crater Lake. The distinctive, white-colored signature layer of these tephra deposits can be found throughout Central Oregon today, revealing itself at trailside or on riverbanks when least expected.
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Panoramic View of Sand Canyon

Pinnacles of Wheeler and Sand Canyons

Some of the more geologically and visually interesting canyons in Central Oregon are found on the southeast slopes of the Crater Lake caldera. In these lightly-visited canyons are found hundreds of stark stone pinnacles, which have eroded out of the volcanic ash of remnant Mount Mazama. The pinnacles in Wheeler Canyon are easily accessible by car at a viewpoint in Crater Lake National Park, while the rock towers in lower Sand Canyon require a challenging, cross-country bushwhack of 2.7 miles roundtrip.
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