Protecting the beautiful rivers, wild lands and legendary botanical diversity of Oregon's Kalmiopsis Country

EIGHT DOLLAR MOUNTAIN BOTANICAL AREA

Easily accessed from the Redwood Highway, the Eight Dollar Mountain Botanical Area provides numerous opportunities to experience the starkly beautiful serpentine terrain of the Klamath-Siskiyou Region.

Jeffrey pine savanna at Days Gulch Botanical Area

Critically imperiled Red root yampah in bloom amongst native bunch grass at Days Gulch, one of three designated Botanical Areas in the greater Eight Dollar Mountain Area. © Barbara Ullian Photo.

Formally designated botanical areas include the Eight Dollar Mountain and Days Gulch Botanical Areas (Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest) and the Eight Dollar Mountain Area of Critical Environmental Concern (Medford District BLM).

The Eight Dollar Mountain Botanical Area and Area of Critical Environmental Concern are not protected from mining (Barbara Ullian photo)

Wild azalea in bloom at the Eight Dollar Mountain Botanical Area boardwalk. The boardwalk, a popular outdoor classroom, is part of Senator Wyden’s proposed Illinois Valley Salmon and Botanical Area. © Barbara Ullian Photo

Don’t miss BLM’s recently completed wheelchair accessible boardwalk into a serpentine Darlingtonia fen. The boardwalk offers the best way to experience these unique rare plant wetlands. To read more about the rare plant communities of the serpentine terrain, many of which are found along the Eight Dollar Mountain Road, go to the US Forest Service’s Celebrate Wildflowers website.

Eight Dollar Mountain Boardwalk, early evening late in June.

The BLM’s wheelchair accessible boardwalk takes you into the heart of one of the rarest habitat types in North America, the Darlingtonia wetlands. © Barbara Ullian Photo.

The Eight Dollar Mountain Road (FS Road 4201) marks the beginning of the National Wild and Scenic Illinois River. The road runs along the “Scenic” section of the river with access to developed recreation sites. The Little Falls Recreation site has a small amphitheater with a fire pit. The road is one of the Illinois Valley’s three gateways to the Kalmiopsis Wilderness.

Eight Dollar Mountain Botanical Area interpretative sign.

Interpretive signs line the Eight Dollar Mountain Botanical Area boardwalk.

A hiking trail running along the Wild and Scenic Illinois River begins at the Darlingtonia boardwalk parking area. The trail ends at the Forest Service’s Little Falls Recreation site.

Eight Dollar Mountain is a mix of National Forest, BLM, State of Oregon and private land. The Nature Conservancy is one of the private land holder. On the north side of the conical shaped mountain is the Deer Creek Center, home of the Siskiyou Field Institute.

Eight Dollar Mountain and Wild and Scenic Illinois River Corridor. Google Earth image.

The BLM land on Eight Dollar Mountain is part of Senator Wyden’s proposed Illinois Valley Salmon and Botanical Area.

The  Eight Dollar Mountain Road also provides access to the Babyfoot Lake Botanical Area, Whetstone Ridge, Onion Camp and the Kalmiopsis Wilderness. The road itself has been designed the T. J. Howell Botanical Drive. To download the US Forest Service’s map and interpretive guide to the T.J. Howell Drive click here . To read Botanist Linda Ann Vorobik’s blog post on the Babyfoot Lake Botanical Area and the area in general click here

Special Botanical Areas in the Greater Eight Dollar Mountain Area include:

Nickel mining threat—In the past large scale nickel laterite strip mines have been proposed at Eight Dollar Mountain. This could happen again if the newly proposed nickel processing facility at Rough and Ready Creek becomes a reality.
Gold mining threat—Currently, the first four miles of the Wild and Scenic Illinois River has become a magnate for instream suction dredge mining. In the recent past proposals for bench placer gold mines have come close to approval.