I’ve already wrote a blog about this trail but we love it so much, I have to speak up about it again.
It doesn’t matter in what season, it always feels magical here to me. Very small area we actually cover here but that doesn’t mean that it’s not full of lovely, small surprises. We just have to listen and watch to detect them.
Since it’s a weekday not even mentioning it’s the last day of the year (ooops I just did)….I’ve decided to park at the very beginning of the park, right after we pulled in next to The Oregon Grill entrance (Kurtz lane). There is a small area here specifically kept for participants of the Community Garden but it’s winter. I figured it’ll be fine. Other times I wouldn’t do it.
We walk past the gardens while admiring someone’s gorgeous greens showing obvious signs of a mild winter. On our left the low set sun shines through a wall of fir trees.
After leaving the garden the area opens up to high grasses and wildflowers framed on both sides by different species of trees.
I could take thousands of photos just of the dried Black-eyed Susans. I think they are beautiful.
Following the trail around the grassland, I still peek into the birdhouse to see eggs. There a few of them. I guess they will be thrown out before spring arrives to accommodate new renters.
Getting closer to Oregon Branch the soil gets overly saturated with water and I am – as always – glad for wearing my trusty boots. Mag has a dilemma to cross the creek above or get wet. He will chose getting soaked….
Walking now on the other side of the therapeutic stream we head west, following it keeping on the edge of yet another meadow. Under some trees Mag cuts in and we end up at the Branch.
Coming back up to circle around towards the farm houses we notice the entrance to the archery range. I’ve never seen anyone shooting here so we brave ourselves into the woods. We notice a bee house and gorgeous tall trees reaching for the clouds, among information about one of the quarries.
We keep to the right, reaching the Forest of Hope. I try to take photos of different paintings every time.
When the trail splits into 4 branches we chose the left side and walk towards the birds enclosures straight ahead. On the right separated from the others is an injured hawk (in the summer there was an owl here). We walk slowly trying not to disturb his peace.
I don’t let Mag close to the other birds either, respecting them as well. Jumpy and over excited dogs (or kids) can be shocking for them as well. We rather walk through the kids educational playground since it’s empty. Mag is really good not leaving any surprises (pee/poo) at places like this. They also have a tiny area for kids to learn about gardening. Very cute!
Heading out from here to the left there is another fenced area across of mostly wildflowers to help bees do their extremely important work. I don’t take Mag in here.
There is also a big handmade bee house next to the trail.
Now we zig-zag through the meadow, until we get to the entrance of the small bog. It’s lined with easy to spot yellow-white bee hives. Amazingly they are buzzing around and Mag shows high interest in them. As soon as we are down at the water there is an awesome covered watching bench.
Coming out on the other side we are approaching the original miner buildings and the bridge beyond.
We have no other choice but to cross on the Kurtz lane bridge. Waiting for the right time to miss cars coming at the same time we are on it. It’s not heavy traffic since this road is only for the park but I feel more comfortable not having cars right by us on a small bridge like this one. I still manage to take a photo of the creek while crossing.
On our left, ahead, is a beautiful green pasture topped with fluffy white clouds.
While walking towards our car I get distracted by a Red-shouldered hawk sitting on pole in the middle of the field to our left. Off course we head towards him. He ends up flying away before we could reach there but the fir trees inviting me to take a photo of there sunny side now.
Enjoying our last few hundred yards I notice a cloud jumping dolphin up in the sky.
Circling around the Community garden we arrive back to our vehicle.
Here is the ResQWalk map with its zig-zagging orange line. 1.57 mile is quite a great accomplishment in such a small area. Elevation is minimal, just have to have boots on depending on the season.
Here is my hand drawn map on satellite image to see details. Not a 100% accurate but will do.
Hope to see you around one of these days out there!