Crow Creek Guard Station and Raven's Roost Lookout
U. S. Forest Service
My summer residence and office was an ancient one-room log cabin right out of your favorite back-country fur trapper tale, located at the confluence of the Crow Creek and the Little Naches River. The cabin is gone now, victim of those "managers" who destroyed all the lookouts, however the site is maintained as a primitive campground.
Whenever lightning storms threatened, or during extra high fire danger periods, I hopped in my trusty '51 Plymouth and bounced up the long, rough road to Raven's Roost, an elderly, very picturesque L-4 ground cabin perched on a peak some 14 air miles NE of Chinook pass. It had been designated an "emergency" lookout some years before, perhaps when the road was improved enough to make it feasible to man on an as needed basis.
Raven's Roost Lookout - USFS - 6198'
Raven's Roost boasted a nearly overwhelming view of Mount Rainier that completely filled its western windows. Unfortunately, it also offered a direct line-of-sight to both Seattle and Yakima, a feature that speeded its demise when Ma Bell decided that this was a perfect spot for a new microwave relay station. They flattened off the top 20 or 30 feet of the peak, grading it into a big, gritty cinder parking lot. In the place of this wonderful little lookout, they erected a big ugly concrete microwave tower - "BUCMWT" . The view from the mountaintop is still spectacular and well worth the long drive up, especially now that most of the road is blacktop... but you'll want to keep your back to that BUCMWT. It definitely screws up the scenery!
This is a carving my Dad did of Raven's Roost back in the '70s. Judging from the "Christmas tree" depiction of the small trees in the area, he did this one fairly early in his carving "career". The realism and detail was much greater in his later carvings. That's me with my trusty canine companion in the foreground but the deer on the left is a bit of artistic license. Dad based this on an old 35mm slide (possibly the one above) and carved it out of a slab of cedar. The carving's final dimensions are about 22" wide and 2" thick. Note that he even included the aircraft identification markings that were being painted on lookout roofs at the time.
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