Built in 1964, at an elevation of 4,000 feet, Acker Rock Lookout looks more like a bird's nest than living quarters for humans. From its perch, the lookout has a commanding view of the South Umpqua River Valley and several of its tributaries. Its foundation is balanced on a thin volcanic rocky ridge and part of the floor dangles over several hundred feet of open air to the tree canopy below. So if you want a view that seems to stretch out forever, this is a good place to go. On a clear day you can even see the rim of Crater Lake.
The Tiller Ranger District manages Acker Lookout and rents it out to the public for $40 a night. Inside the 12 x 12 cab, there is one twin bed, a table, some counter space and two chairs. A mini refrigerator, oven/stove and two wall lights, powered by propane, are also available. During our visit, the twin bed had only a box spring mattress which was very uncomfortable to sleep on. There were no cots or pads available. The lookout had no heater, even though one was listed on the reservation site, and the nights got pretty chilly. A narrow catwalk surrounds the exterior and the outside shutters were easy to fold up or down.
Rock climbing is popular at Acker Rock and many climbers top out near the lookout. Descending Acker Rock is popular too. Oregon’s longest multiple rappel from the ridge of Acker Rock Lookout to the base of Eagle’s Dare is close to 550 feet in length. This is some of Southwest Oregon's best climbing so expect to see a few climbers during your visit.
Yogi and I spent four nights at Acker Rock Lookout (with a surprise visit from a friend, Mark, on the 4th night) in October, 2013.
About the Author
Terry Musgrove lives in Oregon City, Oregon, with his wife and two Hungarian Pumi dogs. After retiring from his job, as a government TV video producer, he set out to create a photographic record of U.S. Forest Service rentals in the Pacific Northwest.