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Three Tree Butte

Elevation: 3600′St. Joe National Forest


The Three Tree Butte Lookout was a Crow’s-Nest tree and tent camp.

Established in the 1930s, abandoned in the 1940s.

It was likely only manned during episodes of high fire danger.

Our Notes:

We’d heard a rumor of an existing crows nest at this location and so set out to find it for ourselves to determine if anything remained. After about an hour of searching we were rewarded to find the crows nest, while not intact, still recognizable.

The platform was secured between two trees when in operation. Currently the platform is collapsed but several planks are still secured to one tree with large nails. The phone lines were a single #9 galvanized wire and are still attached to the trees at the platform, running to each tree and trailing on the ground in different directions.

One of the trees shows equally spaced divots where climbing spikes or a ladder were attached while in use.

We canvased the area in search of the trash pit but were only able to find a single tin can with a lead plug (dating about 100 years old) near an area we assume to have been the temporary camp.

The platform was secured between these two trees. Planks from the platform can still be seen attached on the tree to the right, phone wire can be seen in both trees, secured at this point.
Phone wire – yeah we were pretty excited.

Billy stands below the platform and between the two trees. We found several planks here that we believe were part of the platform, you can also see the wire running down the trunks of both trees as well as the evenly spaced divots in the tree on the right where a ladder or climbing spikes once were.

The only piece of trash we could find near the camp site.

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