Top 10 Wildflower Trails Near Portland

UPDATED: 4/27/21 Spring showers bring flowers… and by showers, I mean downpours if you live in the Pacific Northwest. I may not be the biggest fan of rain, but the meadows outside of Portland are the reward for putting up it. Some consider March 1st the first day of spring, but astronomically the first day of spring is the spring equinox. Usually this day falls between March 19th … Continue reading Top 10 Wildflower Trails Near Portland

Horsetail Falls & Ponytail Falls

Distance: 0.8 Miles RT Hike Type: Out-and-Back Difficulty: Easy Elevation Gain: 360’ Trail Condition: Through a burn zone, well-maintained, forested Trail Highlights: Ponytail Falls: 88 feet plunge, Horsetail Falls: 214 feet horsetail, newly updated trail due to 2017 Eagle Creek fire, views of the Columbia River, moss covered rock walls, switchbacks, ferns Trail Head(s): Horsetail Falls Trailhead Crowd Level: Crowded Recommended Footwear: Tennis shoes + Hiking boots … Continue reading Horsetail Falls & Ponytail Falls

Laurance Lake

Distance: 6.69 Miles RT Hike Type: Out-and-Back Difficulty: Easy Elevation Gain: 1,379’ Trail Condition: Well-maintained in beginning, decommissioned forest road, narrow, talus slopes Trail Highlights: ferns, 22ish switchbacks, seasonal: snowberries, huckleberries, dull Oregon-grape and bear-grass, walk through a forest of Douglas-fir, vine maples, and grand fir at the beginning then lodgepine, ponderosa pine, Mountain hemlock, western white pine, western larch, and noble fir towards the end. … Continue reading Laurance Lake

Elk Flats Trail

Distance: 3 Miles RT Hike Type: Out-and-Back Difficulty: Easy Elevation Gain: 616 feet Trail Condition: Narrow, can be muddy, sandy at the end, exposed roots Trail Highlights: Ocean views, turnaround point at Short Sands Beach, forested, Treasure Cove, Devil’s Cauldron viewpoint, Smuggler’s Cove at Short Sands Beach, Kerwin Creek & Short Sand Creek & Blumenthal Creek on the beach, restrooms and picnic tables at Short Sands … Continue reading Elk Flats Trail

My Top 10 Hikes Under 60 Miles From PDX

We all wish we could spend all day every Saturday and Sunday hiking in the woods, but we can’t. Life happens, responsibilities take over, and sometimes your body just needs a rest. However, if physical activity relieves stress and brings joy… then you need some hikes that are close by for those slumps. These are my top 10 hikes that are 60 miles and under … Continue reading My Top 10 Hikes Under 60 Miles From PDX

Lower Macleay to Pittock Mansion

Distance: 5.7 miles RT Hike Type: Out-and-back Difficulty: Easy Elevation Gain: 950’ Trail Condition: Well-maintained, narrow in some spots, dirt path, paved path, stairs, switchbacks, fencing, several trail junctions and road crossings Trail Highlights: Pittock Mansion (1914), Witches Castle/Stone House (1929), Portland’s tallest tree: Heritage Tree (242 feet tall, 17.3 feet in circumference), walk under Thurman Street Bridge, Balch Creek, Cottonwood, alder, Himalayan blackberry, big-leaf maple, … Continue reading Lower Macleay to Pittock Mansion

Ramona Falls

Distance: 7.1 miles RT Hike Type: Lollipop Loop Difficulty: Easy Elevation Gain: 1,035’ Trail Condition: wide, well-maintained, dirt to soft strata back to dirt, bridge crossings, river crossings, slow elevation gain Trail Highlights: 120-foot waterfall (Ramona Falls), multiple bridge crossings, walk on soft strata, wildflowers, shaded, large colorful andesite rock face, outhouses at trailhead, large parking lot, Sandy River, view of Mount Hood, Ramona Creek, lots … Continue reading Ramona Falls

Mount Defiance 413

Distance: 12.4 RT Hike Type: Out-and-Back Difficulty: Hard Elevation Gain: 5,100 Trail Condition: Rocky in spots, exposed areas, steep, 20+ switchbacks, uneven ground, narrow, some fire damage Trail Highlights: Fire damaged trees from 2017 Eagle Creek fire, radio tower, beargrass, lupine, paintbrush and more, Hole in the Wall Falls (95 feet), Cabin Creek Falls (220 feet), Lancaster Falls (250 foot top tier), and views of: Mount … Continue reading Mount Defiance 413

Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor

While only 12 miles long, the Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor is easily one of the most beautiful areas along the Oregon Coast. And dare I say, possibly one of the most beautiful areas in the state? Its beauty is comparable to what you see at the Alvord, the Wallowas and Crater Lake. You’ll find over 300 years old Sitka trees, 130 rock formations … Continue reading Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor