If trekking through thick forests and alongside a clear mountain river sounds like fun to your dog, then the Middle Fork Applegate Trail will make their tail wag! Located just south of the Oregon border in California, this trail gives your pooch a great excuse to get outside and enjoy some mountain air.
The main trailhead for Middle Fork Applegate Trail is where Forest Road 1035 and Forest Road 1040 meet. From here the trail winds through lush fern grottos and dips down to the edge of the Middle Fork Applegate River. The mossy rocks, emerald pools, and small lagoons will make your pooch feel like they’ve been transported to a magical fairyland. Your four legged sprite will love hopping on the rocks and wading in the river. There’s even a swimming hole for pups who fancy a doggy paddle.
After about 3.5 miles, the trail crosses Forest Road 1040 at the Frog Pond Trailhead. If your pal wants to call it quits, this is a great place to turn around. If they want to keep going, follow the trail as it ventures into the Red Butte Wilderness. Rather than a fern filled forest, the upper section of the trail cuts through groves of Douglas fir, fragrant cedar, and ponderosa pine trees. The forest floor is covered with huckleberry and hazelnut bushes. A breath of this fresh air will certainly reinvigorate your canine buddy. The trail comes to an end at Bean Gulch. If you don’t want to retrace your steps, arrange for a pick up.
Neither water nor restrooms are available at the trailhead. Make sure you pack plenty of H2O, and it’s always a good idea to bring snacks. This trail is not just for summertime hikers; plan a visit in the fall to see the gorgeous autumn foliage. No bones about it, your dog will want to visit Middle Fork Applegate Trail again and again!