The centerpiece of the Wilderness area is Eagle Cap, 9556 ft.

A characteristic of the Wallowas is their glacial-carved nature. Deep U-shaped canyons radiating outward from central peaks such as Eagle Cap. Permanent snowfields and even a residual glacier or two. Hanging valleys with myriad lakes, so many lakes! An abundance of water: creeks, streams, waterfalls, seeps, soggy meadows, bogs, springs -- and that rarity anywhere else in Eastern Oregon, genuine year-round rivers with pure waters, high volumes and great fly-fishing.

The pictures: top is an entry sign to the Wilderness, established 1964, currently at 355,000 acres in size. Next is entering the Lakes Basin with Eagle Cap dominating. Next is a nameless tarn at 8354 ft. on the Hurwal Divide 0.4 air miles up above Razz Lake (8110 ft, a steep climb to the tarn!). Last is a hiker coming down off a climb of Eagle Cap, skirting the shore of still-mostly-frozen Glacier Lake (8184 ft) in late July.


A notable feature of the Wallowas Range is how un-evident it is from the two major cities in the area, Baker City and LaGrande. Eagle Cap itself, while only 40 air miles NE of Baker City, is hidden behind the skirts of lesser foothills. The main freeway through the area similarly gives travelers uninspiring views. (I-84 to Boise).

 

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Page last revised June 25, 2017