Lyle Cherry Orchard

Lyle Cherry Orchard, just past the tunnels east of Lyle, Washington in the eastern Columbia River Gorge is a lovely climb from the river up into the oak savanna of the hillside. A few old remaining cherry trees from the long-abandoned orchard dot the top of hills lending the place its namesake. This spring, a new segment of trail there opened up the western section of the property, introducing hikers to outstanding views looking into the Gorge and out over Lyle. The new trail segments twists through the oak forest, popping out onto viewpoints and finally descending the open hillside above Lyle in a spectacular fashion. I already loved the dry, grassy and oaky terrain here, and this new section is easily one of my favorites in the gorge now. Read more about the new section and the great work done by Washington Trails Association here.

More Adventures

More Adventures

Beautiful Benson Plateau and Beyond

Beautiful Benson Plateau and Beyond A fantastic loop exploration from the river to the top of the Columbia River Gorge It’s been nearly 2 years since I first explored the grand loop in the Columbia River Gorge that utilizes the Pacific Crest Trail and the iconic Eagle Creek Trail, climbing from the base of theContinue reading “Beautiful Benson Plateau and Beyond”

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Criterion Tract Above the Deschutes

Early Spring on the Criterion Tract above the Deschutes The Criterion Tract, managed by the BLM, sits on the high point bordering Highway 197 as it runs south to Redmond from the Columbia, extending down to the Deschutes River south of Maupin, an expanse of open, lonely terrain with far ranging views of the ColumbiaContinue reading “Criterion Tract Above the Deschutes”


Mapping the Timberline Trail

Mapping the Timberline Trail James Wilson An exploration of my personal journey leading to mapping the Timberline Trail around Mount Hood and forming Elevation Changes Cartographic Visit the Elevation Changes Cartographic Map Store My first encounter with the Timberline Trail was on a fall trip to McNeil Point from the Top Spur trailhead. It wasContinue reading “Mapping the Timberline Trail”

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To The Pinnacle

To The Pinnacle My goal for the the day was to trek up the Elk Cove Trail now that the road to access the trailhead has been reopened after having washed by the Eliot Branch and check on snow levels around the Timberline Trail. Starting near mid-day it was a warm slow trek up throughContinue reading “To The Pinnacle”


Vista Ridge Snow Trek

A Vista Ridge Snow Trek With snow levels receding a bit, I headed on the long drive out to the Vista Ridge Trailhead on the northern side of Mount Hood. Grading and graveling roadwork that was finished last fall have made the journey on FS-18 from Lolo Pass a much more pleasant experience by eliminatingContinue reading “Vista Ridge Snow Trek”


Changing Seasons on Mount Hood

Changing Seasons on Mount Hood Hiking from spring back to winter Leaving the Tilly Jane Sno-park just before sunrise (the gate up to Cloud Cap still shut), the forest along the lightly flowing Doe Creek was no quiet space. Instead it was a chorus of babbling wrens, trilling juncos, calling flycatchers and the ethereal swirlingContinue reading “Changing Seasons on Mount Hood”


Utilizing Lidar in Mapping Trails

Using Lidar Data for Mapping Trails Lidar (light detecting and ranging) is a technology that uses lasers to reflect light off surfaces or objects to create digital three dimensional recreations them. It can model environments in stunning detail. The Oregon Department of Mineral Industries has a collection of high resolution Lidar data covering much ofContinue reading “Utilizing Lidar in Mapping Trails”


Chehalem Ridge Nature Park

Chehalem Ridge Nature Park It’s not that often that an entirely new park is added to the inventory of places for recreation, but with the opening of Chehalem Ridge Nature Park, Metro has added 1,260 acres and nearly 7.5 miles of trails to explore. The park is open 8 am to 7 pm for hiking,Continue reading “Chehalem Ridge Nature Park”


A Lookout Mountain Night

A Lookout Mountain Night With the potential for Aurora sightings south into Oregon due to the coronal mass ejection on the sun earlier in the week, I headed out to try and get some views of the northern sky. My plan was to head in the late afternoon to High Prairie trailhead east of MtContinue reading “A Lookout Mountain Night”


Coe Glacier as Winter Draws Near

Coe Glacier as Winter Draws Near With significant rain forecast for the northwest, I wanted to get back to the north side of Mt Hood to check out a few areas before more snow fell on the mountain. On this sunny morning at Cloud Cap Saddle, the outside temperatures were just a bit above freezingContinue reading “Coe Glacier as Winter Draws Near”