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Wanderer's Peak, OR | June 2023

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Data Cellular Coverage: 
Decent, workable
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With the reopening of FR 45 in the Mt. Hood National Forest Clackamas Ranger District in Oregon, a set of previously closed peaks are available to activators again just in time for the summer SOTA season! I chose to activate Wanderer's Peak, along with South Fork Mountain (W7O/WV-030), in a single day double. The area was previously closed due to wildfire damage from the 2020 fires.

Wanderer's Peak, along with South Fork Mountain and Goat Mountain, are a set of peaks just SE of the Portland Metro area and within 1.5 to 2 hour drive on well maintained forest roads. FR 45 is accessible (at the time of writing) only via Hillockburn Road. (NOTE: If you were planning to access the 45 road via Hwy 224 at Memaloose, the bridge is CLOSED at the time of writing. Watch this site for road conditions in the area.) FR 45 is paved for a good distance, turning occasionally to gravel but is clear of trees and well maintained. 

Google Maps gives good directions to the area. Start by setting your destination to 45.2307, -122.3258 or use S. Hillockburn Road as your destination. Proceed 4.9 miles on S. Hillockburn, which turns into FR 45 at a gate. Continue another 22.9 miles on FR 45. FR 45 is paved on and off. The gravel portions are in good condition, passable by any regular vehicle. Turn right onto an unmarked but prominent road which starts steeply up the hill. Some maps may have this road as "270" but it is unclear. Quickly this road turns to two track and has drainage cuts across the road, requiring moderate clearance. I was able to proceed uphill in my Forester, going slowly, and made it 1.9 miles to a parking area. The old road used to continue to the right but is now tank trapped.

Park and hike uphill here approximately .4 miles. At about .2, there is a left fork. Take that where you will shortly find a weather station. The summit proper is just beyond up the hill another .1 miles.

The summit is burned out from the 2020 fires. You should have no problem getting an antenna up in a burned out tree. I used a mast. 2m into the metro area and surrounding peaks was good.