China Ditch Auto Tour Loop
Roseburg District | OR
Season Dates: 1/1 - 12/31
Fees: No fees Associated with this site.
LISTED ON THE NATIONAL REGISTER OF HISTORIC PLACESAs gold mines in California played out in the 1880s, miners moved north into Oregon. These miners used hydraulic mining to acquire placer gold. This method required large amounts of water with a constant supply. In 1889, a plan was developed to bring water from Little River, a tributary of the North Umpqua River, to North Myrtle Creek, a distance of 33 miles. In 1890, construction began on a ditch which measured 5 feet deep and 5 feet wide to channel Little River water into the North Myrtle area. By 1891, 200 Chinese laborers working for the Myrtle Creek Consolidated Hydraulic Gold Mining and Manufacturing Company, were working for $.25 cents a day constructing the ditch. By 1893, nearly 30 miles of the ditch had been built when the Company, not collecting the amount of gold they had hoped for, ran into financial hardships and went out of business within a year. This trail is not wheelchair-friendly. All of the interpretive information can be viewed from your vehicle however, making it a semi-accessible recreation opportunity.
From Myrtle Creek, travel east on County Road 15 for 8.7 miles to Lee's Creek Road (BLM Road 28-4-28.0) Turn left and follow the signs to the China Ditch. The auto tour loop is 10.5 miles.