Iwetemlaykin is Nez Perce for “at the edge of the lake.” The 62 acres of sacred land, located in between the city of Joseph and Wallowa Lake was purchased by many different state, federal, and tribal agencies in 2007 after decades of work. There is only a mile or so of paths, but it is beautiful.
Right next to Iwetemlaykin is the grave-site for Old Chief Joseph of the Nez Perce tribe. (Photo by David Lincoln Mann)
From the path you can continue your walk to Wallowa Lake.
I probably shouted “Wow!” About 100 times on this hike. We did 6.5 miles out-and-back which was surprisingly doable as it wasn’t too steep. You can make this a 12 mile round trip to see Echo Lake, or 6.5 mile round trip to reach the Slick Rock Canyon. This trail is located 8 miles outside of Enterprise Oregon. (NW Forest pass required) We bought trail maps at the Wallowa Whitman office of the US forest service in Joseph, and they told us we’d run into snow a few miles on the trail but we never did. Hurricane creek was named by early explorers because they thought it looked like a hurricane knocked down all of the trees, but it was actually due to an avalanche. Early on in the hike there is a stream crossing.
Hamilton led the way up the hill
My favorite part was this meadow with a view of Sacajawea Peak; the highest mountain in Eastern Oregon.
This is Slick Rock Canyon- the turnaround point for us.
The trail back to the car. 🙂
I would love to take this trail up to Echo Lake someday. There is also a side trail called Falls Creek Falls that will take you up to Legore Lake- the highest elevated lake in Oregon. (4.1 miles round trip, but very steep I hear)