Iron Mountain

Type: 82′ tower with 7×7′ cab
Status: Abandoned
Elevation: 6.982′
Visited: July 4, 2007

I hiked a loop in the Willamette National Forest that took me over the shoulder of Cone Peak and up to the summit of Iron Mountain. This is the view of Iron Mountain from the trail on Cone Peak:

Iron Mountain

The old lookout on Iron Mountain was popular with hikers seeking shade from the sun:

Fire lookout

View of the Three Sisters from the lookout:

Three Sisters

Mt. Jefferson:

Mt. Hood:

Distant Mt. Hood


I parked at the trailhead located at Tombstone Pass on Highway 20 and hiked the seven mile loop counter-clockwise. (Hike description)

For a shorter hike you can park at the trailhead on Road 035 and hike from there. (Hike description)

More information
Forest Lookouts
Rex’s Forest Fire Lookout Page
National Historic Lookout Register
Panorama Photos


An L-4 cab was built in 1933.

In 1976 that lookout was blown off the summit in a windstorm. The R-6 cabin from Herman Peak was moved to Iron Mountain. The Forest Service stopped using it and sometime after my visit in 2007 they decided the lookout was a liability and removed it from the summit later that year. It was replaced with an observation deck, pictured here in June 2018:

Iron Mountain Hike

The Autumn 2007 edition of Fire Network Magazine reported:

Iron Mountain Lookout has been demolished. Oregon Director Howard Verschoor made several trips salvaging parts from the lookout after efforts to save it failed. Due to vandalism problems it was decided to not salvage any remaining items, and to burn the remains in place. A $185,000 contract was awarded for the removal of the lookout and the construction of a treated timber viewing platform. Willamette NF personnel claimed, “This project removes a structure with high cost maintenance issues, and if left standing would become an attractive nuisance for the District to manage. By educating visitors about the area and fire lookouts, this project also should create stronger connection between forest visitors and the agencies missions.”