Hobart hike offers easy access, wildflowers and wide angle views
You can savor a bite size piece of North America’s premier border to border footpath, the Pacific Crest Trail, with a four mile hike from Green Springs Summit to Hobart Bluff. This relatively level segment follows a ridge line between Chinquapin and Soda Mountains, winding through forested sections and meadows. The payoff is a spectacular view from the top of a volcanic cliff at the end of a short spur off the main trail.
The trailhead is near a turnout and parking area on the south side of Highway 66 at Green Springs Summit, well marked by various signs. Look for a metal stile (or gate) at the entrance to the initial portion of the trail, which crosses private property.
The owner of the property has put up ‘no trespassing’ signs at several points. Please stay on the trail (which is marked periodically by silver diamonds) and respect her privacy but do not be deterred. A longstanding easement guarantees access to hikers.
(To make this a one way excursion, you can leave a shuttle vehicle at the PCT crossing on Soda Mountain Road, about five miles from Highway 66. Soda Mountain Road intersects with Highway 66 just west of the Summit.
To spot the trail, look for high voltage transmission lines. The trail is just past the power lines. For a shorter hike, you can walk back about a mile to Hobart Bluff from Soda Mountain Road.)
Within the first mile from the Highway 66 trailhead, you will see the dam at Keene Creek Reservoir far below. It is quite impressive from this angle. Then look carefully at the opposite ridge, just above the Talent Irrigation District canal. You will see several of our cabins peeking through the timber on that slope.
After you have walked about four miles, watch carefully for the side trail up to Hobart Peak. It is marked but the intersection comes up in a rocky, brushy stretch and is easy to miss.
If you take this hike in the next week or so, you should be rewarded with a great view of Medford and environs. Our current coolish weather is sparing us from temperature inversions and the valley is relatively smog free.