SELMA—NewsWatch 12’s Take a Hike series continues at Kerby Peak Trail, another one of southern Oregon’s most challenging hikes.
Three and a half miles to the top might not seem like a lot, but given that it’s all uphill and features almost a 3,000-foot elevation gain, it’s quite the challenge.
The trek starts at 2,900 feet. The sky scraping trees are the only things that go up faster than the trail itself.
For the first mile and a half, you’re weathering the full brunt of the steep incline. It’s an early portion also defined by switchbacks and shade.
A forest full of Douglas firs is both beautiful and beneficial because without them this trail would not come recommended in the summer.
It’s of utmost importance not to let any tiredness distort your sense of distance. It’s going to feel like you’ve put in the work to cover three miles, but remember that feel isn’t real.
Just before the two-mile point, you’ll come to an opening and a gorgeous view of Deer Creek Valley is going to beg you to stop.
Be wary though, this is a false summit, and you still have about half of the hike left to go.
Thankfully, some relief is in store with flat and downhill portions after the tease. You’ll get a look at the Brewer Spruce Research Natural Area, and then will encounter the last tough stretch.
A few more switchbacks get you past the final tough incline, and hoisted over 5,500 feet in the air, you’ve made it to the top.
Watch the video above for the full hiking experience.