Giant Trees of Lost Creek

Jolly tree from north 600w

Article and photographs submitted by Daryl Lloyd.

Hidden in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest near Willard, WA you’ll find a stand of giant Western Red Cedars. Growing up to about 10 feet in diameter at breast height (dbh) they are intermixed with Douglas firs of up to 8 1/2 feet diameter. These are possibly the largest known trees in the Columbia River Gorge area.

This rare, half-mile-long strip of ancient forest, which have been named the “Giant Trees of Lost Creek” is an amazing treasure that deserves special protection.

The late Russ Jolley often visited the largest Doug fir in the stand and kept it a secret…except to a few people. Approximately 8 1/2 feet in diameter, the “Jolley Fir” is a very tall tree with a healthy crown, and could be the largest tree (in volume) in the Columbia River Gorge area.

By | 2017-04-03T19:00:46+00:00 May 12th, 2015|Categories: News, Plants|8 Comments

About the Author:

Outdoor photographer Darryl Lloyd is an avid hiker.

8 Comments

  1. Darryl Lloyd 05/25/2015 at 3:33 pm - Reply

    I now believe that the largest tree in the Columbia Gorge area is a Douglas fir near Government Mineral Springs, north of Carson, WA. It was recently measured (unofficially) at 9 feet 5 inches in diameter, and it has a healthy crown. The giant tree stands close to the Forest Service cabin, not far from Trapper Creek.

    • Susan Hess 05/28/2015 at 9:09 pm - Reply

      We are lucky to have a few of these ancients left.

  2. Anthony Villagomez 09/11/2015 at 11:40 pm - Reply

    Darryl, I recently heard of this beautiful ancient forest and I was curious to see it. I read your article with the Gifford Pinchot Task Force and I thought I could maybe help you get an accurate reading of how tall the tree is. I am a ISA Certified Arborist and recreational tree climber. I would be happy to climb and measure it for you in exchange for showing me this rare gem. Susan H knows me well too if you would like a reference.

  3. Darryl Lloyd 09/12/2015 at 2:54 pm - Reply

    I would be happy to take you there, Andrew. Or I could email you a map that shows the location of the Russ Jolley Fir. Last June we measured its height at approx. 243 feet with a clinometer and 100-ft. tape (for horizontal distance). So the tree isn’t quite as tall as we first thought. Thanks for offering to measure it the right way!

    • Anthony Villagomez 09/12/2015 at 6:53 pm - Reply

      That would be great Darryl. I was actually going to scout the area today while mushroom hunting. A map of the Russ Jolley tree would be great! I’m pretty good at finding things in the Gifford Pinchot NF, as I have all the topographical maps available. my email is antvillaclimbs@yahoo.com If you would like to check out my tree climbing website it is treeclimbingcascadia.com

  4. Rod Cusic 03/30/2016 at 3:52 pm - Reply

    I would really appreciate having the directions to the Giant Grove, I tried to find it last week nut no luck

  5. Dave Robberson 01/26/2018 at 4:29 pm - Reply

    Are you the brothers that we’re recently on Portland tv still looking for big trees in Oregon?

    • Susan Hess 01/26/2018 at 5:29 pm - Reply

      Hi, Dave. That article was written for us by Darryl Lloyd who with his brother Darvel was featured on Portland television. On Feb. 8 the brothers will be featured on OBP’s Oregon Field Guide. You can raach Darryl at longshadow@gorge.net.

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