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The 28 mile side trip follows the Cowlitz River west to the Still Water creek and then up the Still Water Creek valley, across Cougar Flat to Ryderwood, end of the road, up in the Cascades.

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The highway sweeps through rolling fields of pioneer-type farms. Through the 1940s, near the forested hills remained large stump areas. The countryside becomes wilder and more desolate there. Growths of vine and brush line the road and stretch away toward the scarred hills. Vader is a farming community and rail point on Olequa Creek. Northern Pacific Railway officials changed the town’s original name, Little Falls, to Sopenah because of the...

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Points of Interest
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Grace Evangelical Church of Vader

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Ben Olsen House

Mile: 6

Former headquarters for the Long-Bell Lumber Company’s logging operations in the district. The town, built in 1923, was once a booming logging center. The dwindling of near-by timber resources and the effects of the depression are evidenced by weatherbeaten and boarded-up cottages. Through the 1940s a nursery was maintained here by the lumber company for reforestation. In 1953 Long-Bell sold Ryderwood to Senior Estates Inc., which turned the town into...

Learn more about Ryderwood