Illinois River Trail (Kalmiopsis Wilderness/near Selma, Ore.)

Rating (Out of 5): 4.0

Location: Near Cave Junction/Selma, Ore.

Distance: 11 miles round-trip to Pine Flat; 5 miles to York Creek

Difficulty: Moderate to Pine Flat; easy to York Creek

Camping: Yes

Quick hit: A dry, beautiful trail through some of Southern Oregon’s wildest country, following the scenic Illinois River. The trail begins at Oak Flat and climbs above the Illinois River. The first 2.5 miles are spectacular, with views of the canyon, surrounding mountains and river in abundance. In spring, the trail is packed with wildflowers. York Creek is located 2.5 miles down the trail, and if you head up the little stream, there's a grove of rare Cobra Lilies.

After four miles there's a junction that branches off toward Pine Flat, a beautiful day hike destination or camping spot. The official trail heads up Bald Mountain and continues 22 miles toward Agness, crossing numerous creeks along the way. The trail is extremely wild and difficult in places.

Directions: From Grants Pass, drive south on Redwood Highway 199 to Selma and a flashing yellow light. Turn right on Illinois River Road 4103 and follow it 18.6 miles to its end. The final stretch of the road is very rough. The trailhead provides a crude camping area, and the trail begins across a bridge.

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