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Pickett Butte Lookout, Umpqua National Forest

The Pickett Butte Lookout offers a view of the entire Jackson Creek Drainage and much of the lower elevation lands around the town of Tiller from an elevation of 3,200 feet. The Rogue-Umpqua Divide Wilderness, south and east of Pickett Butte, has scenic peak landmarks, which are capped with snow until early summer.

The original lookout tower was 25 feet tall and built in 1934. The tower was replaced with the current flat top structure on a 40 foot tower in 1948. Pickett Butte is an active fire lookout and will be staffed by Forest Service personnel during daylight hours for situations critical to the district.

What Will I See?

  • Panoramic views of the entire Jackson Creek Drainage.
  • Expansive views of the Rogue Umpqua Divide Wilderness area.
  • Unique volcanic and sedimentary rock outcroppings and dense conifer forests.
  • Abundant wildlife ranging from hummingbirds to black bear. 

About This Destination

The Umpqua National Forest is nestled on the western slopes of the Cascade Mountains. Explosive geologic events shaped the distinctive landscape on the 983,129-acre forest, and provide spectacular scenery as well as an abundance of natural and cultural resources. Visitors discover a diverse place of thundering waters, high mountain lakes, heart-stopping rapids, and peaceful ponds. The forest is characterized by its many waterfalls, including the 293-foot Watson Falls on the North Umpqua Highway.
 
Guests may enjoy a day of scenic driving along a portion of the 172-miles Rogue-Umpqua National Scenic Byway. Mountain and river scenery unfold along the highway, showcasing everything from rolling oak-covered hills and towering coniferous forests to roaring white water rapids and incised intercanyon lava flows.
 
Swimming at the Three C Rock Picnic Area, about seven miles from the lookout, is also a refreshing way to spend a warm summer afternoon.
 

What Should I Know?

Amenities: The 12’ x 12’ one-room lookout is furnished with a single bed, and a small table and chair, and is equipped with a propane heater, lanterns, cooking stove with oven and a refrigerator (propane is provided). There is a pulley system available to transport items from the ground to the lookout (use at your own risk). A vault toilet is located at the site.

Operating Hours: Available year round.

Fees:  $40 per night per group, with a maximum of four occupants.  

Reservations:  Must be made at least two days in advance. The maximum-length stay is three consecutive nights. Phone 1-877-444-6777 or visit www.recreation.gov.

Think safety:  This site is not recommended for groups with small children. This is a no-smoking facility. Storms are part of the thrill of staying at a lookout, but they are also extremely dangerous. Be aware of bears.

Accessibility:  The road to the lookout is not snow plowed.

Other info:  There is no water at the site so bring plenty for drinking, cooking and washing.  Pack out all trash. Do not let pets roam freely. 

How Do I Get There?

42.943699, -122.8547

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