Waldport Walkers

This page contains some of the earlier hikes we have done. It was getting so big that it took forever to load on computers. Ancient history here.


Even More Business: Maggie has announced a work party to repair and refurbish chips and other things on the Woodland Trail will take place on the third Saturday of December, the 20th. Meet at Keady Wayside at 9:30 AM and bring rakes, sheets, wheelbarrows, etc. Be sure to wear gloves. All hikers are welcome to help and will be appreciated.

After an early morning downpour, Thursday, December 4 calmed down, and the rain ended before Maggie, Nell and John, started their ascent of the Woodland Trail. This was a reconnaissance hike, designed to assess where the trail needs maintenance work. Maggie, leader of our Waldport Walkers Trails Crew, kept copious notes, planning for our next work session. We found several sections of trail in need of chipping, some rope banisters removed, and John replaced a mileage marker which had been destroyed. Our hike of just over an hour ended in sunshine!

On Monday the first day of December, fifteen hikers elected to get out of the cold by heading for the shelter of the road to the "fish ladder." Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Maria, John, Jack, Jim, Peggy, Paul, Ineke, Kevin, Hoyt, Nell, Diane and Bill all made it to the "fish ladder" and back. Once again, we encountered rain when the hike was completed. The little Dick's Fork stream was running pretty strong after the past week's rain. A few photos at the very start of the hike, then at a bright spot along the way, and the group pausing at the end of the trail before starting the return trip.

Link to Kevin's Strava App

After stormy night, with nearly an inch of rain, Thanksgiving Day, November 27, commenced with a light drizzle. Margaret and John stayed close to home by choosing the Woodland Trail with it's rain-absorbing forest canopy. The lower and middle reaches of the trail were lined with hundreds of mushrooms, far more than we'd ever seen on this trail. The trail was in excellent shape and remarkably clean, and the City Crew had replaced a missing section of the rope banister. Thank you! We emerged from the forest to find that that rain had ended.

The Waldport Walkers will be hiking on Thursday, November 27, Thanksgiving Day. As usual, our Thursday hike will be "short", lasting approximately one hour. Join us at Keady Wayside, from whence we will depart at 9:30AM. Happy Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 24 was a "between storms" day. Seventeen seems to be a popular number of hikers lately, and today was no exception. We welcomed back Betsy and Bill who joined Paul, Hoyt, Peggy, Kevin, Heather, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, John, Jack, Jim, Sharon (with Sarabella), Rich, Gillian and Diane on a journey to Cummins Creek Trail at Cape Perpetua. It was another lovely day in the forest, and we hiked uphill to "Gillian's Log" and a little beyond. John hiked the steep Loop trail. Looking down into the steep ravine to the south of the trail we saw a lot of dead trees, possible victims of a slide or wind storm. Kevin has a new App on his phone which recorded our elevation at Gillian's Log at 685 feet above sea level. This can be seen in the elevation plot from his Strava App below:

Kevin's Strava "App Map"

Photos at "the log," group shot at a switchback, and the group hiking, thanks to Kevin.

In a light drizzle on the morning of Thursday, November 21, Nell, Heather, Ineke, Paul and John chose to hike Waldport’s Woodland Trail, both for it’s beauty and for the shelter it provides. The trail was in excellent shape, marred only by the disappearance of some of the rope banisters, and by a garbage can dumped in the skate park well. The latter we reported to City Hall. We turned at the southern trailhead, and returned in part along the waterline service road. Our sheltered hike of just over an hour ended with the drizzle gone, and a very high tide lapping the rocks at Keady Wayside.

Monday, November 17 was another cold day. We welcomed new hiker Nell and returning hikers Sharon (with Sarabella) and Diane. Along with Maggie, Mary, Margaret, Maria, Jack, John, Jim, Gillian, Paul, Ineke, Heather, Hoyt, Chris (with Darby), and Rich, the group headed for Blodgett Road and our beautiful reservoir road. Big Creek was running strong and the waterfall was more visible than usual, perhaps due to the deciduous trees having shed most of their leaves. Upon reaching the reservoir and verifying that "the captain" was still present in his tree, we returned to the gate and then went down to the creek and revisited the soft mossy trail to the "cooler," as that facility is known. We traveled a bit less than three miles. Photos are very candid.

Jack's STRAVA Map

Here is John's report for Thursday, November 13:

Thursday, November 13, as luck would have it, started with torrential rain. Our planned hike was to show two Oregon State Parks representatives a proposed new trail route in Seal Rock, linking the new Brian Booth State Park to the village. When we were informed that one of our guests could not participate, and considering the heavy rain, we postponed our exploratory hike to a later date. We regret any inconvenience this may have caused.

Edit: On Friday, the 14th, the Port of Alsea Board of Commissioners hosted a retirement party for Maggie Rivers, who has been in charge of the Port for 20 years. Maggie was one of the founders of the Waldport Walkers, in fact, the group was formed at a meeting in her office, and several of the original members attended the gathering. Happy retirement, Maggie, from all of us.

Monday, November 10, supposedly the eve of a cold front, dawned cool but sunny and beautiful, so beautiful that 19 hikers were anxious to attack a trail today. Hoyt, Don and Stephanie were welcomed back, along with Kevin's visiting brother Brinton and his wife Phyllis. Joined by Rich, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Maria, John, Gillian, Jack, Jim, Heather, Kevin, Peggy, Paul and Ineke, the group selected Gerdemann Gardens, YaHike, and the 804 Trail. The forest was fine, and the surf was wild along the 804. Jim finally got a chance to check out his new camera, a Nikon D3100, photos from which appear here. He found a spot to "intercept" the group returning south on the 804. Those two shots feature front runners Rich, Gillian and Heather, followed by most of the rest of our group, which, as usual, had split into two or three factions. What a nice day for November.

Kevin's Strava Map Jack's Strava Map

As the early morning drizzle ended on Thursday, November 6, John departed from Keady Wayside to explore the route of our proposed new Lint Slough Trail. We have been informed that we will probably receive funding to build the trail early next year. He found that the trail route needs light trimming, but the sun-dappled mossy trail, with wonderful views of the slough to the east, was as always, a pleasure to hike. As the hike ended, the rain resumed. Next week, on our Thursday November 13 hike, we will be accompanied by two representatives from Oregon State Parks. We will be showing them the route of a proposed trail through a private tract of land in Seal Rock, which would link the new Brian Booth State Park with the village of Seal Rock. We will depart as usual from Keady Wayside at 9:30 AM, and meet up with our visitors in Seal Rock at 9:45 AM. All are welcome to join us on our exploration of this proposed trail route.

Monday, November 3 greeted us with a gentle but continuous rain. Soon to be elected City Councilman Jack was joined by Mary, John, Margaret, Kevin, Ineke and Jim. We elected to stay "local" and hike the Woodland Trail. As John reported Thursday the chips we spread last week seem to have weathered the recent storm and rains. We were disappointed to discover more vandalism, as someone had cut a lot of the guide rope along the switchbacks. We encountered another hiker who was very upset with the vandalism. When we reached the city park at the top of the trail, we found this group of children playing on the jungle gym. Imagine that, out in the rain.

Kevin's Strava Map

Jack's Strava Map

And another photo of the children we encountered, thanks to Kevin

On the warm and overcast morning of Thursday October 30, Heather and John decided to inspect the Woodland Trail to determine how much damage was done by last weekend's wind storm, the first of the season. The lower reaches of the trail were free of downed trees, not surprising, considering the size of the old growth spruces and firs in this section of forest. Near the southern end of the trail we found a large downed cedar partially blocking the trail. We were glad to find so little storm damage, and also to see that the wood chips that our trail maintenance crew and our wonderful student helpers had spread last Saturday, had survived the subsequent rains. We were also pleased to find very little litter during our hike of just under an hour.

On Monday, October 27, between storms on a beautiful morning, Maria, Chris (and Darby), and Curt all returned to the group, and Karen (with Westly) joined us. Along with John, Margaret, Kevin, Peggy, Heather, Mary, Rich, Jayne, Paul, Ineke, Maggie and Jim, the group headed for Yachats and the lower part of Amanda's Trail. The scenery along the trail and views through the forest of the ocean were truly spectacular, as is the case when the sun shines here on the coast. The two dogs enjoyed the hike. Chris picked some Chanterelle mushrooms, and remarked that this is the best trail yet that she has joined us to experience. When we reached the bridge, it was evident that Amanda's statue has gained much more jewelry and clothing. Photos of the group at various locations along the trail plus the obligatory shot on the bridge. I just had to add a couple of scenic shots.

Kevin's Strava Map

October Trail Maintenance Day

On Saturday, October 25, which will be remembered as the first storm of winter day, John, Margaret, Trail Maintenance Leader Maggie, Heather, Kevin and Jim, were joined by Coach Mike and several members of his Waldport High School Cross Country teams. As John reported Thursday, the City crews placed several piles of chips at various locations along the Woodland Trail. We split into two groups, attacking both the lower and upper trail sections, eventually meeting at the switchbacks, which got a lot of attention. The WHS Cross Country team members were very good workers, hauling the chips to all locations along the trail, and we Waldport Walkers thank all of you for your hard work, which was, and will be, much appreciated by hikers and runners along the trail. Thanks to Arlo, Etasha, IvyLynn, Elizabeth, Trevor, Caroline, Colton, Allen, Forrest, and I think all of you headed for Grand Central for well deserved pizza when the work was done. Just for interest, my pedometer logged 1.99 miles of walking during all of this. Photos below of Heather, Maggie and Kevin with the team members at the lower end of the trail, and pretty much everybody up above the switchbacks when work was done.

After 5" of rain in the previous two days, the morning of Thursday, October 23 was cloudy and calm, perfect weather for a hike. Since this coming Saturday is the big Waldport Walkers trail maintenance day, Heather and John chose to scout the Woodland Trail to see where repair is needed, and to check whether more wood chips need to be delivered. We found new piles of chips at the lower trailhead, and at the top of the switchbacks. Since more chips are needed to repair upper sections of trail, John asked the City Maintenance crew for more chips at two other locations. These will be in place by the end of today. High School students will be helping with the Saturday repairs, and all others are welcome. Bring gloves, rakes, old sheets, buckets, or wheelbarrows if you can. Our hike of just under an hour was both productive and enjoyable.

On Monday, October 20, Paul and Ineke were welcomed back from their long trip to the Netherlands, as well as Margo after an absence. Joined by Mary, Margaret, Maggie, John, Jack, Jim, Gillian, Rich, Kevin, Peggy and Bill, we elected to return to the "fish ladder," again after a long absence. That venue is striking when the sun shines down through breaks in the forest as it did today. Dick's Fork stream was not flowing as robustly as in the spring, but it was there. My little camera does not capture the brilliance of the colors, but here are a couple of our group along the trail, Jack and Mary leading, and Maggie, Margaret and Gillian in the second wave. Look at that forest in the background.

Click Here for Kevin's Strava Map

After three rainy days, the morning of Thursday October 16 was sunny with only a light wind. The perfect day inspired Maggie, Heather, Helen (with Princess), John and Beth (welcome back!) to choose one of our favorite oceanside hikes, the 804 Trail. After parking on Perch, we proceeded south, constantly impressed by the magnificence of the crashing waves along the rocky shore. On our return through Smelt Sands State Park, we met a photographer capturing a particularly impressive view of the ocean through a gap in the sandstone cliffs. He then showed us a photograph of the same scene which he captured 53 years ago! (Different camera). Our hike of just over an hour was a new trail experience for Helen and her very enthusiastic Princess.

On October 13, as the USA celebrated Columbus Day, 13 hikers celebrated Peggy's birthday by hiking to the Giant Spruce at Cape Perpetua. Many leaves from the deciduous trees had fallen along the trail, which diminished the "umbrella effect" and brightened the trail. Rather than record our destination with a photo at the spruce, we decided to call this "Bridge Day" and everyone gathered on two different bridges along the trail for group photos. By checking those photos, one finds John, Margaret, Bill, Maggie, Heather, Mary, Gillian, Kevin, Peggy, Jayne, Jack, Rich and Jim. We enjoyed the good weather, and returned via the campground route. John found that one of the old trails had been cleared, and ventured on it. The surf was pretty wild despite the fact that the tide was low.

Kevin's Strava App shows three miles

On the misty morning of Thursday, October 9, new Waldport Walker, Bill, joined Heather, Margaret, Maggie, Helen (with Princess), and John, on an assessment hike of the Woodland Trail. On Wednesday, the trail was part of the route of a high school invitational cross-country meet, and we wanted to see whether there was trail damage requiring repair. There was none resulting from the runners. We hiked the entire trail, noting the sections of trail where weather had worn away the wood chips. These areas will be repaired by our trails crew later this month. Our hike of just over an hour, on a new trail for two of our hikers, was enjoyed by all, including tail-wagging Princess.

On Monday, October 6, Maria, Chris, Gillian, Dennis, Nan, Mary, John, Margaret, Kevin, Peggy, Heather, Bill, Maggie, Jack, Jim and Curt (welcome back) met at Keady Wayside and after a long discussion, decided to drive to the Fern Ridge Cemetery in Seal Rock and hike to the former ODOT center at Ona Beach. We set off enthusiastically and marched to the ODOT center. We did notice that it was unseasonably warm and did not seem to notice that it was pretty much downhill all the way. Quite surprisingly it was muddy in places. Why? As we trudged back to the cars we definitely noted that it was now UPhill and were pretty worn out at the end. See Kevin's Strava App for our progress. In the photos, see if you can tell the real tree from the fake one, that everyone is looking up at in the center one.

Kevin's Strava App

On the sunny morning of October 2, Mary, Margaret and John had the pleasure of welcoming back former Waldport Walkers Joyce and Helen, as well as Bruce from Bend. We drove to the Blodgett Road trailhead and headed into the forest. The sun-dappled trail surrounded by the huge moss-covered trees was, as always, a pleasure to traverse. We shared the trail with many rough-skinned newts, and the occasional banana slug. Upon arrival at the reservoir turn-around, we found that our Ancient Mariner had disappeared. We searched and Margaret found him, and now he is once more perched on his branch awaiting forest visitors. On our return hike we made a side trip to Big Creek, now merely a trickle. Our hike of just under an hour was enjoyed by all.

On the occasion of our 275th Monday hike, on September 29, 16 hikers gathered to bid farewell to Finn, who is returning to Tucson with Barb this week. Finn selected Cummins Creek at Cape Perpetua, so off we went. Bill (welcome back), Maggie, John, Margaret, Rich, Margo (welcome back), Jean, Jayne, Gillian, Mary, Jim, Kristi, Ana, Simon and Willow, along with Charlie, enjoyed the quite scenic trail, going as far as "Gillian's log" before reversing course and returning to the cars. We did meet a few other hikers and noted evidence that a large herd of elk had recently visited the trail. Kristi will henceforth be known as Gwendolen Fairfax, the character she portrayed in the last three weekends presentation of Oscar Wilde's "The Importance of Being Earnest" on stage in Yachats. Photos of some of today's hikers plus Gwendolen.

It actually rained a bit on us before we completed our hike. Have the Monday weather gods deserted us?

No Strava Plots, but we hiked a little over 4 miles

On the warm and misty morning of Thursday September 25, Margaret, Finn, and John decided to hike the forest trail starting at Waldport Heights. We headed south, admiring the large old trees and nurse stumps, and then emerged at the clearcut, from which we had an unobstructed view of Lint Slough. We made our way down to the bank of Lint Creek, passing many piles of elk dung, and several large bear scats filled with berry seeds. After viewing the south end of the proposed new Lint Slough Trail, we headed back to the forest via the power-line right-of-way. When back in the forest we saw a few early-emerging mushrooms with distinct animal gnaw marks. Our hike, punctuated by the occasional light drizzle, lasted exactly one hour.

Added comment: Did John, Margaret and Finn catch a glimpse of Egbert the Egret, who appears to be hiking along Lint Slough?

On September 22, we welcomed Jean's return to the group. She, along with Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Maria, Gillian, Jack, John, Jayne, Jim (enough alliteration?), Kevin, Peggy, Rich, Loie, Dennis and Nan, traveled to the visitor center at Beaver Creek Natural Area, to take Gillian's suggestion of crossing the Marsh Trail. This we did, and it was as dry as we have ever seen it, though the grass was wet and pretty much soaked us up to the knee level. The photos show how tall the grass was, and our leader Gillian coming through the trail. Once we crossed the bridge at the the Loop Trail, we split into what became three groups, Jack, John, Margaret, Mary, Jayne and Maggie heading southwest on the Loop Trail, while Kevin, Peggy, Gillian, Dennis, Nan, Jean and Jim headed the other way toward the "up" branch, and Maria and Loie followed us, but took a different "up" trail. Compare Jack's Strava map with Kevin's to see the difference, ahem, especially in elevation. The first group reversed course at the barn buildings, while the other two groups did so after reaching Snaggy Point. Once we returned to the visitors center via the Marsh, we did the small loop trail there and had a contest to see who could tell the biggest whopper about where we went and how difficult, who carried whom, etc. It was fun.

Jack's Strava Map

Kevin's Strava Map

On September 15, new hiker Loie joined Maria, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Gillian, Chris, Peggy, Kristi, Nan, John, Jack, Kevin, Dennis, Rich, and Jim and we headed for Legion Road. No longer "The Land of 10,000 Lakes," the road was as dry as we have ever seen it. We had intended to go down the new trail we discovered on our last trip here, but sighting a car parked partway down the trail deterred us. Instead, we ignored the No Trespassing sign at the gate and continued on Legion Road. We did not see a soul. Returning, the TWO vehicles from the other trail drove past us, one with California plates, the other with Washington plates. Mindless younger folks smoking in the cars, quite dangerous lately. Photos by Kevin and Jim. Notice how well Kevin's and Jack's Strava plots agree.

Jack's Strava Plot Kevin's Strava Plot

The morning of Thursday, September 11 was sunny and warming rapidly, with a light east wind. Maggie, Karen (with Westly), Finn and John, chose to walk the beach. We headed south along the low tide line, admiring the many boats, some of them crab boats, but most carrying people fishing for Chinook salmon or cutthroat trout. Just beyond the jaws, we found a dead and partly devoured California seal lion in the surf. Soon after wading Patterson Creek, we turned and headed back to Keady Wayside, passing a couple of optimistic agate hunters with hands full of pebbles, including an agate or two! Our delightful hike of just over an hour was enjoyed by all. Here is a photo of the sea lion.

September 8th found 15 hikers gathered at Keady Wayside. We elected to drive to the Captain Cook Chasm bridge at Cape Perpetua, and hike the Pacific Coast trail south to Neptune Beach, then explore Neptune Beach. Jack, Jayne, Chris (and Darby), Maria, John, Margaret, Kevin, Peggy, Mary, Gillian, Heather, Finn, Don, Stephanie and Jim were surprised to find more hikers on the trail than at the peak of tourist season. Once on Neptune, we hiked south to Cummins Creek, which has obviously changed its course since we were last there. The traffic on Highway 101 was noticeably less than at the peak tourist season. We could actually cross it leisurely. It was a beautiful day and a very enjoyable hike. I apologize for the candid photos once again.

Click here for Kevin's Strava map

On the sunny and still morning of Thursday, September 4, Heather, Mary, Margaret and John, decided to hike the 804 Trail. We parked near the north end of the trail, and hiked as far south as Marine Drive in Yachats, passing many other hikers enjoying the sunshine and ocean views. John was checking to see whether more of the Oregon Coast Trail way-finding signs, which he had posted, had been removed. Several had become souvenirs, and will be replaced this week. At the end of our hike of just under an hour, which included a brief visit to the beach, we collected some delicious blackberries, before returning home.

On the First of September, (how did that happen?), Labor Day, 14 hikers met at Keady Wayside. We welcomed new hikers Don and Stephanie, and decided to introduce them to our favorite rain forest off Blodgett Road. They were joined by Curt, Rich, Jack, John, Dennis, Jim, Margaret, Nan, Mary, Gillian, Jayne and Heather, and we all enjoyed the beauty of this road. The lighting conditions verified that we are indeed into the shortening of days, as the waterfall was in total shade, despite the sun. We ventured down to the Big Creek crossing, where Dennis and Nan did cross. A tree was blocking our "soft mossy" trail, and only John ventured there. A short but enjoyable holiday hike. Photo was taken at the reservoir. Nan was hiding behind Mary.

Click here for Jack's Strava plot

On the cool and foggy morning of Thursday, August 28, Karen, Westly, Heather and John, decided to explore the forest trail on the eastern periphery of the Waldport Forest Service Ranger Station. We headed south along the beach, past a couple of large red sea-jellies, and then we were confronted by about a dozen turkey vultures, hovering over, lurking beside, and one perched upon, a dead harbor seal. We left the beach at Corona Court, crossed the highway to the Ranger Station, and then proceeded along the old trail along the east edge of the property. The clear-cut on private land to the east has partly erased the old trail, but we were able, with some difficulty, to wend our way to the south end of Norwood Drive, and then down to Keady Wayside. Our hike of just under an hour clarified what needs to be done to restore the old trail.

CELEBRATION, John has reached 80 years of age

And the Waldport Walkers celebrated with John at the Yachats Farm Market/Brewery on August 27.


Monday, August 25 was another nice day, attracting new hikers Jean and Chris (with K9 Darby). We welcomed back Bill and Maggie, Kevin and Peggy, with grandson Elias. John, Mary, Heather, Jack, Dennis, Nan, Maria, Curt, Finn and Jim piled into our cars and headed for Captain Cook's bridge at Cape Perpetua, from which we would attack the Giant Spruce Trail. Just as we left, Kristi and Meadow drove in and joined the caravan. There was a lot of traffic and a lot of tourists were parked at the bridge. When we got to the Visitor Center, Meadow had decided that she and Kristi should take a harder trail and go up St. Perpetua trail to the viewpoint. The rest of us eventually split into different groups, and most made it to the Giant Spruce, as the photo reveals. Mary and Heather were enjoying the little tranquil spot nearby when John joined them, as in the second photo.

Link to Kevin's Strava App

On a sunny and calm Thursday, August 21, Betsy got to choose our hiking route, since it was her last hike with us before returning to California. Heather, Gillian, Maggie, Chris, Finn and John joined her, starting with the Alsea Bay Bridge walk. Our crossing was enhanced by the presence of dozens of harbor seals basking in the sun on the sand spits below the bridge. At Betsy's urging we then did the Old Town Loop hike, wending our way to the Port of Alsea docks, past the Kayak Shack and the Salty Dawg, and then up Mill Street. After passing the old gaol, we reached Katie's Bakery, where Betsy and Chris chose to stop for refreshments. We hugged them farewell, and returned to Keady Wayside, a most enjoyable, longer than usual, 75-minute Thursday hike.

On Monday, August 18, new hiker Maria joined us, and we welcomed Finn back to the group. They joined Margaret, John, Nan, Dennis, Betsy, Jayne, Gillian, Mary, Heather, Jack, Jim, Kristi, Simon (and Charlie), Willow and Meadow, and we selected Gerdemann Gardens and beyond for our hike. Welcome improvements to the Gardens hike were noticed, planks installed over the muddy spots, and a new footbridge over Starr Creek to replace the damaged one. Once through the gardens we hike up the hill to the SLCW reservoir, noting along the way improvements made to the private property area that is so inviting. Willow enjoyed picking huckleberries and Meadow found a small snake. Simon carried Charlie through the gardens and he didn't seem to mind at all. All three of them got down into the stream just below the little dam at the reservoir. As usual, candid photos and I didn't capture everyone. In the second, Willow presented an orange berry that she had found to John. None of us could identify it.

On a warm but overcast Thursday, August 14, Maggie (welcome home and happy birthday), with Margaret and John, decided to revisit the Woodland Trail. We found the trail to be in excellent condition, thanks to our trails crew who had re-chipped bare sections of the trail last month. As always, we enjoyed the atmosphere of this hour-long forest hike, with its magnificent old trees, scatterings of mushrooms, and patches of huge skunk cabbages, no longer in bloom.

On August 11, 17 hikers gathered and decided to go to Legion Road. The very mention of Legion in summer caused everyone to search for bags, buckets and other containers for the berry fest that was bound to be found. Kristi brought Ana, Simon, Katherine, Willow and Charlie and along with John, Margaret, Kevin, Peggy, Heather, Gillian, Mary, Dennis, Nan, Rich, SeaHeart and Jim, motored to Smiths driveway at 691 Legion Road. Hiking along the road, we were not disappointed by the blackberry crop, as they were very plentiful and delicious. As you can tell from the attached photos, our hike became a berry picking event. Some of us went along the road and discovered a new sign at a gate which admonished us that private property existed beyond it and we were not welcome. Some of us went down a nearby road which we had not traversed in the past. It was like a tunnel with the forest along both sides, and then we found a clearing with a sandy area and another road. Subsequent map study shows we were just on the outskirts of Driftwood Village Mobile Home Park. That road beckons for a future investigation. Mary, John, Kristi, Heather and others brought home a big supply of blackberries.

Kevin's Strava App Map

On the sunny morning of Thursday, August 7, Christy, Michael, Jeremy, Grace, Margaret and John chose to visit the Giant Spruce near Cape Perpetua. The Giant Spruce Trail from the Visitor Center ascends along the south bank of Cape Creek, passing many nurse stumps and nurse logs, several elk slides, and a wonderful variety of ferns and other flora. At the end of the mile-long trail, the magnificent old spruce, nearly 600 years old, with its cavernous base (see photo), was as always, awe inspiring. After Jeremy and Grace had waded in the creek, we headed back, passing several snags with hundreds of shelf fungi growing up the length of their trunks. After a brief visit to the Visitor Center, we left for home. A delightful hike of just under an hour.

As usual, the cold wind at Keady Wayside made us choose a destination, on August 4th. John and Margaret had more family visiting, son Mike, his wife Christy and children Jeremy and Grace. They had been with us in the past, and we noticed how the children had grown. Hikers SeaHeart, Gillian, Betsy, Kristy, Simon (with Charlie), Willow, Mary, Dennis, Nan, Kevin, Peggy, Heather, and Jim selected the Beaver Creek State Park natural area, and we drove there. It was somehow a collective choice to get the hard part of the hike out of the way first, so we attacked the steep part of the loop trail and continued on to Snaggy Point, where the attached photo was taken. Simon and Charlie had disappeared and Kristi and Willow went in pursuit of them, while the rest of us backtracked to the descent portion of the loop trail. There is obviously a herd of elk resident there at Beaver Creek and we have never seen them, only evidence of their existence. We passed the lone apple tree and paused at the bridge over Beaver Creek, which appeared to have new wood. The children spotted "Pooh Sticks" in the creek, and later found some banana slugs. When we got past the buildings which were once cattle barns, we found Kristi, Simon and Willow, so everyone returned to the vehicles together. Another fun Monday.

Kevin's Strava App

On the sunny morning of Thursday, July 31, Heather and John embarked on a seal search along the margin of Alsea Bay. On Wednesday, at the request of the Marine Mammal Stranding Network, John had identified a "sea lion" reported beached in Bayshore, as actually a juvenile elephant seal. At dusk it was reported to have crossed the bay to the Keady Wayside beach. For our Thursday hike, we decided to attempt to find the baby seal which had disappeared overnight. We headed north along the beach, under the Alsea Bay Bridge, and northeast along the bay to Robinson Park. We found hundreds of ghost shrimp and clam breathing holes, dozens of gaper, cockle and varnish clam shells, but nary a sign of our seal! We returned via Old Town, a delightful, if unsuccessful hike, of just under an hour.

On July 28, Jayne brought her son Mark and his family, wife Angie, children Avery (10) and Evangeline (17 months) to Keady Wayside, where they joined Dennis, Nan, Chris, Betsy, John, Margaret, Kevin, Peggy, Jack, Mary, Gillian and Jim. We wanted a fairly level hike and elected to go to our favorite Big Creek trail to the reservoir off Blodgett Road. When we arrived at "The Cooler," we saw three deer at the facility, a doe, a larger fawn and a very small fawn, which we obviously frightened away. The sun was shining and as usual the scenery was beautiful. After completing our round trip to the reservoir, Jayne and family decided to take their leave and the rest of us drove about 1 1/2 miles up Blodgett and parked. From there we set out for the quarry, and got "side-tracked" by taking another side road until we encountered trees blocking the road. "After-hike" map checks revealed that this is the road to Blodgett Peak. Most of us continued on just about 1/4 mile further and finally found the quarry, which was littered with shell casings as usual. On the way back to the cars we encountered a man in in pickup on his way up the road, and we soon heard gunfire. Guess he was going to the quarry. The photos are poor and obviously candid, but here they are at the reservoir. Wait till you see Kevin's Strava App.

Kevin's Strava plot

After a light morning drizzle, Thursday July 24 turned sunny and the Woodland Trail beckoned. Our Waldport Walkers trails crew had re-chipped two major sections of the trail last Saturday, and John invited Heather, Betsy, and Karen (with Westly on his leash) to see the trail improvements. We also wanted to determine what other trail work was needed. We found the trail in excellent condition, and enjoyed, as always, the beautiful forest through which it meanders. Betsy and Karen were shown the remnants of Waldport's 19th Century water reservoir on the Red River, and after admiring the variety of tree formations, including the "pistol butts" and nurse stumps, we emerged from the forest and into the sunshine.

On July 21, John and Margaret had family visiting and they wanted to hike Cummins Creek. The family members and friends, Paul, Jeannette, Matt, Madison and Nika were joined by Bill, Maggie, Dennis, Nan, Betsy, Heather, Jayne, Mary, Gillian, Kristi (alone, no children came along), Rich, Curt, Jack and Jim, and we 21 on the 21th, hiked Cummins Creek. The creek was not as active as it was in the winter, but it is a very scenic and beautiful hike. The first photos were taken early on, before, as usual, we split into different groups. Kristi, Betsy, and John hiked the very steep side trail that eventually loops back to the main trail. Only a few of us made it to "Gillian's Log" as it will be forever known, as the usual turnaround point for our group. We hope that the youngsters enjoyed their outing with us.

Jack's Strava App Map

On the sunny but breezy morning of Thursday, July 17, returning hikers from Tucson, Margaret and Norm, as well as Karen with Westly on his leash, were introduced to the Big Creek Trail off Blodgett Road by Heather, Margaret and John. As always the waterfall was a delight to behold, and the tall moss-covered Douglas Firs and Western Red Cedars were impressive. The flow in Big Creek was lower than usual, but there was still the pleasant gurgling sound from the valley. On our return hike we took the side turn down to Big Creek, but resisted the temptation to ford it. Our forest jaunt of exactly one hour was enjoyed by all, including tail-wagging Westly! Photo courtesy of Karen.

On July 14, the Super Moon (which we have been unable to witness due to overcast and heavy fog) caused a -2.5 tide, and it was WAY out. Sixteen hikers decided to walk the beach after a long discussion. Lily (welcome back), Curt, John, Margaret, Kevin, Peggy, Hoyt, Jayne, Heather, Mary, Jack, Rich, Dennis, Nan, Gillian and Jim drove to Driftwood Beach State Park, from which we hiked north along the beach to Seal Rock, crossing a few streams and enjoying the birds, dogs and other wildlife. Some of us elected to avoid climbing over the rocks and scouted among the different rock formations, finding starfish and other stuff. Others went on to Seal Rock and found a trail along Quail Street. Eventually all returned to Driftwood Park.

Kevin's Strava

Jack's Strava They agree nicely

Thursday morning June 10 was sunny, and the northerly winds had subsided. Margaret and John decided to explore the Woodland Trail. The quiet of the trail was enjoyably punctuated by numerous bird sounds. We found that the rest room graffiti, which we had reported last week, had been cleaned up by the City Works Crew. Thank you! The trail was very clean, but needs some wood chips in a few areas. This will be taken care of by our Waldport Walkers trails maintenance crew.

July 7, an overcast day, attracted 21 hikers who decided to return to Amanda's Trail in Yachats. Kevin, Peggy, Dennis, Nan, Bill, Maggie (welcome back), Gillian, Jayne, Mary, Heather, Diane, Betsy, John, Jim, Rich, Kristi, Simon, Katherine, Ana, Meadow and Willow, along with Charlie, were the hikers. This trail has been well traveled since the last time we walked it, and is well defined. We stopped at the bridge and returned to our starting spot. Amanda's statue has accrued more decorations, and the younger hikers got down into the creek under the bridge. Photos of the trek up the hill, and the obligatory bridge shot.

Click here for Kevin's Strava "App Map"

On the sunny and windless morning of Thursday July 3, Heather, Betsy, Margaret and John followed Heather's suggestion that we investigate the new clear cut just east of the Waldport Ranger Station. We went up Norwood Drive, and after a lot of meandering, descended along the old trail at the south end of Norwood Drive. Suddenly we were on the edge of a massive clear cut which extended as far as our eyes could see. We found our old trail again, and then suddenly emerged on the newly cleared southern section of the proposed Bridgeview Trail. After a detour through the Ranger Station, we descended to the beach via Corona Court. The tide was out, and most of the little blue jellies, known as "By the Wind Sailors" (Velella Velella), which had covered vast stretches of beach, had washed out to sea. We returned to Keady Wayside exactly one hour after departing, much more aware of happenings in our neighborhood. Edit: attached photo showing clearcut.

On June 30, the last day of June, signaling 1/2 of year 2014 has passed, 17 folks gathered at Keady Wayside. We welcomed back Jayne and Chris, as well as Jack's son Ben, who were joined by youngsters Anna and Elise. Diane, Hoyt, John, Margaret, Dennis, Nan, Heather, Gillian, Mary, Jack, Rich and Jim made up the rest of the group. We decided to visit the Cummins Creek trail, as several folks had not experienced it before. Chris, on the other hand, had hiked it yesterday. We met people driving out of the parking area and others on the trail, including a friendly puppy named Luna. It turned out to be a beautiful sunny day and the hike was very enjoyable. The Cape Perpetua trails are always so well maintained and a pleasure to experience.

Click Here for Jack's Strava map

In a light drizzle on the morning of Thursday, June 26, Betsy (welcome back!) and John decided to seek shelter from the elements on the Woodland Trail. On our ascent we passed the memorial bench cleared of graffiti by Jim and John on Monday afternoon. To our dismay the bench at the bifurcation of the trail near the skate park was covered in fresh graffiti. We also found signposts blacked out, more cleaning for our trails crew! As we emerged from the forest near the end of our hike of just under an hour, we could see the sun reflecting from the arches of Alsea Bay Bridge. A delightful hike indeed, in spite of the graffiti.

Monday, June 23 was a fine sunny day, and 15 hikers journeyed to Fern Ridge cemetery in Seal Rock, from which we walked north on the roads of the new section of the state parks property. This area is destined to become an equestrian trail and it was obvious from the horse hoof prints and other items left behind that some folks have checked the area out for such activity. Kevin, Peggy, Jack, John, Margaret, Hoyt, Heather, Mary, Rich, Jim, Kristi, Katherine (welcome back), Simon, Meadow and Willow, along with Charlie, managed to hike just over four miles. Along the way we encountered a man with a small grader who had been clearing and grading the roads, much appreciated by us. Apparently the State Parks Department has commenced improvement of the area. Our young family members picked a lot of berries along the way. We stopped short of reaching the Ona Beach ODOT facility. Here are a couple of photos. Kristi and Meadow in the lead.

Click Here for Jack's Strava app.

And Here for Kevin's Strava app.

Special Report

Our mentor, John, was awarded the Doug Newman Recreational Trails Achievement Award at a ceremony held at the Overleaf Lodge Events Center in Yachats, on Friday, June 20. The reception for John was organized by Lauralee Svensgaard, with help from many others. The award was presented to John by Rocky Houston, Statewide Trails Coordinator. Many of our group were in attendance to express our appreciation to John for all he has done, not just for us, but for many more. Congratulations, John, for an award very much deserved.

Photo gallery: Look at the lineup, almost all WW folks. Rocky and John just after the presentation. John "unaccustomed as I am to public speaking." Group shot of the Waldport Walkers in attendance.

Monday, June 2 was cool and windy. John, Margaret, Kevin, Peggy, Dennis, Nan, Gillian, Heather, Maggie, Mary, Hoyt, Jim, and Sharron (welcome back) met and decided to return to Beaver Creek Natural Area. It took six cars to transport the 13 of us. There were a few muddy spots but the trails were in good shape. We split into two groups about halfway around the Beaver Creek Loop Trail, due to various commitments, four of us backtracking while the rest went up to Snaggy Point and completed the Loop Trail. New maps were available and it appears that the South Fork Trail, the West Beaver View Trail, The Bear Valley and Bear Meadow Trails, The South Beaver Meadow Trail and the North Beaver Trail are the ones no longer maintained, comparing the new and old maps. Photos by Jim and Kevin.

Click Here for Kevin's Strava map

Responding to a report of graffiti and trash on the Woodland Trail, our hikers on Thursday, May 29, decided to do a cleanup walk. With plastic bags in hand, Heather, Margaret, Maggie, Nan and Dennis, Marsha and Jim, and John ascended the trail. We found little trash until we reached the skate park where a lot of cleanup was done. On the far side of a steep ravine lay a bottle which has irritated us for years. No more! Nan scampered down the hillside, crossed the stream, and retrieved the offending bottle. Well done Nan! One bench, near the top of the trail, was covered in graffiti which we will remove later today. The trail itself was in good condition, the wild rhododendrons are in bloom, and our 70- minute hike was enjoyed by all.

On Memorial Day, May 26, the sun was shining after a night of rain. Seven hikers met and held a long discussion. Good thing, as Kristi and the children arrived a little late. We, that is John, Kevin, Peggy, Maggie, Mary, Gillian, Jim, Kristi, Phillip, Simon, Ana, Meadow and Willow, drove via Eckman lake to the "fish ladder," Road 417. Oh, yeah, Charlie came along, too. The road was in bad shape but the hike was beautiful with bright sun bringing our the many shades of green along the road. The flora has grown very vigorously there, such that it is hard to even see the creek, which is Dick's Fork. The youngsters picked a lot of berries and enjoyed seeing the many salamanders along the road. We took the other road, 1045, out to highway 101 and the "red house," and that road was in much better condition. Here are a couple of candid photos.

Click here for Kevin's Strava Map

The Thursday "shorter and easier" hike morphed into a "longer and harder" mode on May 22. Kevin and Peggy organized an assualt on St. Perpetua Trail, up the face to the overlook at Cape Perpetua. When we gathered at Keady Wayside, unsuspecting Dennis and Nan decided to join us once again. They were unperturbed by our proposed venue, so, joined by Kevin, Peggy, Hoyt, Heather, Maggie, Gillian and Jim, the entire group drove to the visitors center at Cape Perpetua. That hike is a scenic wonder, with old growth forest, nurse stumps, many wildflowers, and great scenic views. It is definitely a challenge, but not as steep as we remembered. When we reached the overlook, we were joined by several other hikers and their dogs. The view was as spectacular as ever, and we continued to the stone building, then did part of the loop trail and the very upper portion of Amanda's Trail. At this point, some of our hikers elected to return to the visitors center via the road, while the rest of us tried to catch up with Nan on the downhill phase of the St. Perpetua Trail. While we were enroute, quite a fog bank moved in. Upon joining up at the visitors center, we debunked the "2.2 mile round trip" posted on the sign, having logged some 4 miles. Great hike. Photos at the viewpoint and the stone building.

Click here for Kevin's Strava Map, almost 800 feet elevation traversed

No one showed last Thursday. Monday, May 19 was drying from the night rains. Seven hikers met and decided to stay local, cross the Waldport bridge, go down to the beach and check the sand drifts at Bayshore. Heather, Hoyt, Kevin, Peggy, Mary, Maggie and Jim did just that. Once across the bridge we started down the trail in front of the KOA facility. Obviously it has seen little use. The grass was waist high and we got wet slogging through it. Once on the beach it was noted that a lot of flotsam has been deposited from the river swollen with winter rains. The sand drifts were not as bad as we had seen them in the past. Crossing back over the bridge we were entertained by quite a group of harbor seal pups and their moms on the west side of the bridge. The traffic on Maple Street was unusually heavy and we learned that 101 through town (Arrow street) was closed due to a pedestrian struck by a vehicle there. Group photo at the base of the trail down from KOA, and the other of everyone viewing the ocean on the far side of Bayshore. FYI June 8 will mark five years since we started this hiking group.

Click here for Kevin's Strava map

On Monday, May 12, with a heat wave threatening, only 10 hikers gathered at Keady Wayside. Curt suggested a repeat of the "upper" Cummins Creek trail, accessible from Cummins Peak Road 55. Don was welcomed back after a long absence, and was joined by Curt, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Heather, Gillian, Hoyt, John and Jim. Road 55 is very curvy, partly paved and partly gravel, with a steep cliff off one side, a definite one way road. Naturally we encountered another vehicle on our way to the parking site. Once there, the trailhead is well marked and it is single file for quite a ways. Once we reached the second fork in the trail and found a "trail closed" sign, well, you know what that meant. Dissenters wanted to hike the closed trail, while others wanted to stay on open ones. The first two photos show the "discussion" over this, resulting in Don, John and Margaret heading down the Cummins Creek trail while the other seven attacked the mountain goat steep trail to the 1882 foot peak. This trail was covered with illegal bicycle jumps and ramps the last time we hiked it (July 4, 2011), and that was the reason for closure. Five rapid climbers outran Mary and Jim, and missed the encounter with the bear. The photo of Mary and the bear under the tree is taken in the same location as our group shot the last time we hiked here. The bear's name is Waldo. Last photo is the magnificent view from the "top." Looked like some logging has been done there.

In a mist, with rain threatening, Thursday, May 8, was again a good time to seek forest shelter. Ineke, Paul and John hiked from Waldport Heights south into the forest, following the waterline trail, and turning back before reaching the water tower. We admired the huge Sitka spruces and Douglas firs towering above us, and encountered many rough-skinned newts slinking across the trail. The view over Lint Slough to the west was spectacular. This delightful hike was a new experience for Ineke and Paul.

After a long discussion concerning where to go, on May 5, Cinco de Mayo, we headed to Yachats and the Amanda Trail. Kevin and Peggy returned and were joined by Paul, Ineke, John, Margaret, Mary, Gillian, Jack, Hoyt, Rich and Jim. The Yachats hiking group trail maintenance folks had obviously done a lot of clearing on the trail, and we thank them. Showers were forecast but none occurred, in fact the sun appeared and we got quite warm. We witnessed several trucks carrying the remnants of the past weekend's carnival in Newport, now headed to some other location.

Photos at the bottom of the hill starting up, and at the viewpoint along the trail.

Click Here for Kevin's Strava plot

Thursday May 1, after the record-setting heat of Wednesday, was windless and cooler, a perfect day for hiking along the ocean. Heather, Gillian, Mary, Ineke, Paul and John decided to hike the 804 Trail, a partial repeat of Monday's hike. We headed north from the Adobe, enjoying the beautiful ocean views. Upon reaching the beach at a very low tide, we explored the rock outcrops and the abundance of marine creatures which they support. Large and small acorn barnacles were intermingled with many mussels, goose-neck barnacles, anemones, and the occasional ochre sea stars. On our return trip we paused several times to look for whales, none seen!

What a glorious morning welcomed us on April 28. Curt, Rich, Hoyt, Gillian, Mary, Heather, Bill, Maggie, Jack, Paul, Ineke, Margaret, Jim, Kristi, Emily, Phillip, Simon, Ana, Meadow and Willow, inspired by John's report on Gerdemann Gardens from Thursday, decided to return to the Gardens to check the new trail loop and blossoms. There were other folks hiking the Gardens and we met Kathleen, who inquired about you, John. From the Gardens we continued to Ya 'Xaik trail, then crossed highway 101 and were greeted by some of the most scenic surf seen on the coast. We hiked slowly up the 804 Trail, pausing often to take in the beauty of the wild surf. We also met Don and Carolyn on the 804. Photos below cover the Garden, then Ya 'Xaik, the beach, and our group paused to take in the scenery. Later in the day it became overcast, unlike the morning.

On a breezy and overcast Thursday April 24, Heather, Ineke, Paul, Hoyt and John decided to hike the Gerdemann Gardens and Ya'Xaik Trails. As expected, many Rhododendrons were in full bloom, and we were pleased to find that a loop through the Gardens was open to the public. The steep Ya'Xaik Trail, with it's many magnificent trees and nurse stumps, was muddy and slippery in some areas, but our hike of just under an hour was enjoyed by all. For three of us this trail loop was a new experience.

Here are a couple of photos.

On April 21, the day after Easter, 16 hikers met at Keady Wayside. John was welcomed back and we decided to revisit our favorite rain forest along Big Creek off Blodgett Road. John, Margaret, Kristi, Emily, Meadow, Willow, Curt, Mary, Gillian, Hoyt, Jack, Bill, Maggie, Paul, Ineke (welcome back) and Jim hiked in to the reservoir, where Meadow and Willow had to wade in the stream. Emily joined them in the water. No cameras were present. If any of you who were along and are reading this happened to get an iphone shot of the girls in the water I would appreciate a copy for this blog. John and Margaret left us after our return to the cars, but the rest of us drove about a mile up Blodgett Road and hiked toward the quarry, which we did not reach. Subsequent map checks showed that we were about 1/2 mile from our quarry, the quarry. Jim's pedometer showed a little over 4 miles.

Emily came through with this photo of herself, Meadow and Willow in the cold water of Big Creek. Thanks, Emily.

John has resumed hiking, and the Thursday hike has gained momentum. Here is John's report from April 17: On Thursday April 17, in a steady drizzle, Betsy, Heather, Ineke and John set off from Keady Wayside to explore the Lint Slough trail. We found the trail to be slightly overgrown, but passable since the City Crew removed two trees blocking the trail. Our trails crew plans to do some pruning of the trail in the near future. When we emerged from the forest canopy the rain had stopped. The tide was very low, and we did not see our river otter friends, but our hike of just under an hour did include sightings of Canada Geese, Mallard Ducks, and a lone Osprey.

April 14 was a very nice day, attracting 23 hikers. After much discussion, we decided to motor down south on 101 to Washburne Park, and hike the Hobbit trail, and the Valley trail back to Washburne through the campground. Grace rejoined us, bringing along new hiker Barbara. We welcomed Betsy back from southern Cal on her spring break. Jack, Jayne, Jim, Gillian, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Margo (I just had to do that), Kevin, Peggy, Curt, Rich, Vern, Hoyt, Kristi, Emily, Phillip, Ana, Simon, and Meadow completed the 23 count, along with Charlie the dog. Some of the hikers were familiar with these trails, and for some it was a first experence. It had something for everyone, starting south on the beach to the Hobbit Trail, up through the forest and across 101, into more forest containing giant wild rhododendron bushes and interesting trees, punctuated with a few meadows and ponds. A beautiful hike. Couldn't capture everyone in the photos, but tried.

Kevin's Strava plot. Jack's Strava Plot

On April 7, 18 hikers met for our 250th Monday hike. Our total mileage over those 250 hikes approaches 1,000 miles. We have walked the distance from Portland to Los Angeles. Bill, Mary, Rich, Margo, Kevin, Peggy, Margaret, Mary, Curt, Jack, Gillian, Heather, Jayne, new hiker Grace, Kristi, Emily, Simon and Jim traversed Gerdemann Gardens, where we encountered numerous Trillium. Some of the huge rhodies had dropped most of their leaves. The trail north of Gerdemann's was quite muddy, so we split into two groups. 10 continued on while 8 retraced steps back to Gerdemann and up the "Y'Hike" trail. As we 8 neared the end of that trail we heard voices and discovered that the other 10 had caught up with us after encountering the bridge over Starr creek had washed out. The entire group proceeded across highway 101 to the 804 trail and returned to the cars. To celebrate the occasion of our 250th hike, we again invaded the Farm Store and Brewery in Yachats for lunch, where we were joined by George. It was another fun day. Photos of one group led by Rich, and the other group led by Peggy, and our party at the Farm Store. Just for info, the last two Thursday hikes have not taken place due to lack of participants.

Kevin's Strava Jack's Strava

On the last day of March, the 31st, 16 hikers gathered to celebrate Kevin's birthday by hiking our favorite rainforest trail off Blodgett Road. Kevin, Peggy, Bill, Maggie, Paul, Jack, Mary, Gillian, Heather, Jayne, Curt, Kristi, Emily, Phillip, Simon and Jim enjoyed the rain forest. The younger hikers made some of us feel old, crossing Big Creek a few times, wading through the freezing water, climbing down to the waterfall--phew, got tired just watching them. Signs of spring are everywhere. Trillium are blooming and we found a pink one. A reminder that next week marks our 250th Monday hike and some sort of celebration will be in order. Here are some candid photos.

Click Here for Kevin's Strava App

Spring break found 22 hikers assembled at Keady Wayside on March 24. New hiker Hoyt joined Bill, Maggie, Rich, Margo, Kevin, Peggy, Paul, Ineke, Curt, Heather, Jayne, Mary, Gillian, Kristi, Emily, Phillip, Ana, Simon (and Charlie) and Jim. Who should appear but John and Margaret, who joined in for a while. John won't let mere knee replacement keep him down. After hearing of over 100 grey whale sitings this past weekend, we decided to go to the State Park at Yachats and hike the 804 trail in search of whales. The younger folks and Charlie took the long and arduous way, down near the sea on the rocks, while the rest of us used the trail. Those darn whales did not cooperate at all, and we saw nary a one. As we returned to the State Park it had become quite windy, but otherwise a beautiful day.

It was difficult to get this large group together for a photo as can be seen by the first one. Finally, success, though missing a few.

Click Here for Kevin's Strava app

Mary, Rich, Margo, Ineke and Paul met on Thursday March 20th and decided to take advantage of the very low tide to walk on the sand along Alsea Bay from Keady Wayside to Dock of the Bay Marina and then back through Waldport. The Vernal Equinox occurred while they walked. Thank you, Paul for the report.

On March 17,

St. Patrick's Day, 21 hikers gathered at Keady Wayside. Matt and Peggy(2) were welcomed back, joining Paul, Ineke, Mary, Gillian, Maggie, Bill, Jayne, Heather, Curt, Jack, Rich, Margo, Kevin, Peggy, Kristi, Ana, Emily, Willow and Jim. We headed to Cummins Creek trail which was quite wet after all the rain. Naturally with such a large group we split into several smaller ones. Gillian, Heather and Peggy led the parade. Kristi and family finally caught them but the rest of us did not. We experienced brief rain, nice sunshine illuminating the beauty of this forest, and cloud cover. We covered at least four miles. The photos are of different groups of hikers along the way.

To celebrate St. Patrick's Day, when everyone is Irish, about half of the group stopped at the Yachats Pub for lunch and libations. After all had ordered and were settling in, who should arrive but our mentor, John, and Margaret, who were on their way to the doctor at Florence. It has been three weeks since John underwent his knee replacement. It was great to see them and we had a fine lunch. You folks are a wonderful group. By the way, this was our 247th hike. Three weeks to 250--another party?

Click HERE for Kevin's Strava app

On March 13, Paul, Ineke, Mary and Heather walked across the Waldport bridge, a first for Paul and Ineke, and beyond.

March 10 dawned after more rain. The Keady Wayside meet saw our hiking team back to almost full strength, with fifteen hikers. We welcomed the return of Jayne, Maggie and Bill who were joined by Mary, Gillian, Heather, Paul, Ineke, Jack, Rich, Margo, Curt, Kevin, Peggy and Jim. We decided to hike the Giant Spruce trail at Cape Perpetua, starting at the Cook's Chasm bridge. Spring cannot be far off, as there was an abundance of Trillium flowers, skunk cabbage and other flora. We saw a few elk slides along the trail and the Cape Creek was more like a river. The trail was not too muddy considering the rain we have experienced, and the forest was beautiful, as was the ocean, bathed in sunshine upon our return to the bridge. Photos at the Giant Spruce (looks like a meeting) and on one of the bridges. Kevin, Peggy and Gillian playing "Pooh sticks" on another bridge as Jayne looks on.

It has been suggested that we have lunch at the Yachats Brewery next Monday,

St. Patrick's Day,

following our hike.

Click here for Kevin's Strava App

After all day and all night rain and wind which had not let up much on Monday, March 3, Jim was intent on hiking indoors at the gym, but decided to stop at Keady Wayside. Heather was there, followed shortly by Mary and Ineke. Despite not having hiking boots nor raincoat, he decided to join the ladies. Then the familiar white van pulled up and we welcomed the return of Kristi, along with Simon, Ana, Meadow and Willow. We all drove up Dick's Fork Road and parked in a wide spot. It was still raining pretty hard but everyone had rain gear, including Jim, courtesy of Simon, and nice bright green jacket. All of the youngsters had bright colors on, and Willow had a polka- dotted jacket on. Guess who also did not have his camera? Hopefully Kristi's smart phone captured us. As always, the rain stopped. We saw quite a few newts and enjoyed the wet adventure.

Rich, Margo, Ineke and Paul walked the Woodland Trail in Waldport on Thursday, February 27. The weather was drizzly and all four admitted to half-hoping the event would be cancelled due to low turnout but everyone had a pleasant time on the well-sheltered trail and were glad to have carried on with the walk.

Monday, February 24 was cool and damp. Many of our hikers were traveling or busy with other events, but six gathered and decided to venture back to the Mike Miller Trail in South Beach. Rich, Margo, Jack, Curt, Mary and Jim assualted the "root stairway" along the Miller trail, which is much like our Woodland Trail, you are in the middle of a forest in the middle of town. There were a few muddy places and some new trail signs for Wilder Trail and another that I can't remember. We completed the loop on Miller and were confused that we did not come out in the housing development which we found the last time we hiked here, so we drove to the development and found the end of that trail, which must have been Wilder, which we did not take. Wildlife spotted included many of the little newts we have seen, and two Canada geese in the pond along the trail.

On a cloudy and cool Thursday February 20, Margo, Rich and John decided to explore the trails near Gerdemann Gardens. This was new ground for Margo and Rich, both of whom were very impressed with the trail paralleling the Gardens, and by the illustrative signage identifying the rhododendrons. At the upper gate we veered right and ascended the Ya'Xaik Trail into the dense forest, hardly noticing the rain beginning to fall. We were prevented from completing our planned round trip by a large fallen tree blocking the trail. On our return trip we reported the trail blockage to the Gerdemann Gardens' owners, who will arrange the tree removal.

After high winds and heavy rain early on the morning of February 17, Presidents Day, things calmed down and eight hikers met at Keady Wayside. Heather, Gillian, Mary, Margaret, Margo, Rich, John, and Jim decided that our lovely Blodgett Road hike along Big Creek would be a good choice, and it was. Rich and Margo had not yet experienced this wonderland, and were not disappointed, as Big Creek was roaring as we had never seen it, making the waterfall more spectacular than usual. We discussed the fact that the moss on trees had grown even thicker, and we discovered Big Creek tributaries which were not evident on past hikes. Jim had to get a photo at a "Road Closed" sign, since we had not done that in a while. A few of us stayed and hiked up Blodgett Road until we encountered sprinkles. Once again the rain spared us on a Monday. We said a temporary farewell to John who will be out of hiking commission for a while, facing knee replacement surgery.

Lucky for us, Thursday, February 13, was a sunny and windless day to explore new territory. Heather, Mary, Margaret, Ineke, Paul, and John, joined new hikers Maxine and Maureen at Maureen's Hilltop Farm in Seal Rock. From there we hiked to the neighboring Deeming forest property which separates the new Ona Hills State Park from the village of Seal Rock. We wound through the forest, admiring centuries-old Sitka spruces, and passing many wandering newts and a large bear cave. Just short of the State Park property, we veered south until, blocked by dense salal bushes, we wisely decided to retrace our steps. On our arrival back at Hilltop Farm, we were welcomed by Josie and her son Jake, Maureen's friendly donkeys. Our 70-minute hike covering new ground for most of us, was enjoyed by all.

The unforseen snowfall resulted in no hike on Thursday, February 6th. Rain showers and wind did not deter nine stalwart hikers from meeting on Monday, February 10. Paul, Ineke, John, Margaret, Jack, Kevin, Mary, Heather and Jim decided to hide from the elements by walking the Woodland Trail, which proved to be a good choice. Wind and rain were hardly noticeable. We did some side tracking attempting to find Peggy's elusive snag. Jim thought he had it, but it proved to be the wrong one. Heather led us to the correct one. The trail has definitely seen some traffic since our chipping effort some time ago, and the missing trail sign has been re-installed at the skate park. Here is today's crew.

Click HERE for Kevin's Strava App

February 3rd produced one of those rare occasions when the guys outnumbered the ladies. John, Jack, Rich, Curt, Paul, Kevin and Jim, along with Mary, Margaret, Gillian, Heather and Ineke, decided to motor to Fern Ridge Cemetery in Seal Rock, to hike the roads north of there. It was pretty muddy, and when we reached the first fork in the road, the Mars group pretty much took one route while the Venus group took another. Gillian was a defector. Kevin insisted we had been on this one before, "just a couple of hundred yards." At the end of that fork we enjoyed an encounter with our first ever wildlife, a deer, which was indeed several hundred yards away. Those power lines we found are the same set that runs south into Waldport. There was a view of the Beaver Creek Visitor Center from that point. We backtracked and at the intersection, found an elaborate arrow that the ladies had left which seemed to indicate that they had changed their minds and headed up yet another road. We followed them and encountered them returning from their furthest point. We did check out the short trail to the ominous locked gate, and another road close to the cemetery. New territory today. Photos of the guys checking out the deer, and believe it or not, the deer is in the second photo. Get our your magnifying glasses, she's right in the center.

Jack's and Kevin's Strava Apps pretty much agreed today.

Kevin's Jack's

On a sunny and mild Thursday January 30, Ineke, Paul, Beth, Rich and John, welcomed John's friends Kathleen and Bruce visiting from Bend. Bruce had chaired and John had served on the Oregon Recreational Trails Advisory Council (ORTAC) through whom Waldport obtained funds to build the Woodland Trail. Bruce had not seen the trail, and was eager to see what we had accomplished. The sun-dappled trail was at its best, and our visitors were very impressed. The exercise and good company of our hour-long hike was enjoyed by all.

On Monday, January 27, once again 15 hikers met, Curt, Ruth, Paul, Ineke, John, Margaret, Rich, SeaHeart, Gillian, Mary, Kevin, Peggy, Heather, Jim and new hiker Don. It had been discussed at the Yachats Lions crab fest that Gwynn Creek Trail would be our hike for today, so off we went to Neptune Beach. Parked there and started up the trail. That trail is absolutely beautiful and fascinating with huge old growth Douglas Firs, many trees down across the creek, several tributaries, a nature experience. When we got about 2.2 miles up, most of us turned around and retraced our steps, but Curt, Ruth, Heather, Gillian and Don continued on further. On our return to the cars, my pedometer showed 5.00 miles. Margaret has suggested St. Perpetua Trail, up the face of the mountain to the viewpoint next week. The following is a pictorial history starting with the Lions crab fest "Waldport Walkers" table, to the parking lot at Neptune, and a couple that show that we really did hike today. See if you can find Gillian and Peggy in one of them. Photos by Kevin and Jim.

Click HERE for Kevin's Strava App

Once again a sunny and dry day, Thursday January 23 was a perfect day to explore new ground. Ineke, Paul and Rich were unfamiliar with the proposed trails along Lint Slough, so John offered to show them the potential of this beautiful area. From Bird Avenue in Township 13, we hiked the old logging roads descending to the southwest bank of the slough. The views were spectacular! We returned to our starting point, and drove to the north Lint Slough trailhead. As we walked along the bank toward the forest, we were loudly greeted by two Canada Geese. We also saw many ducks, one heron, but not our river otter friends who often disport themselves on the banks of the slough. After exploring the beautiful and mossy trail until blocked by a large downed tree, we retraced our steps, and were again hailed by a flock of friendly geese. Our total walking time was one hour.

On Martin Luther King Day, January 20, 2014, 16 hikers convened and decided to return to Cape Perpetua and Cummins Creek Trail. Curt, Ruth (welcome back), Kevin, Peggy, John, Margaret (Happy Birthday), Peggy(2), Heather, Mary, Gillian, Jack, Paul, Ineke, Richard, Margo and Jim managed about five miles up and back. Cummins Creek was a beautiful sight, with sun streaming through the forest, very unusual for January. A lot of conversation took place about the two football conference championship games of yesterday, as well as "where shall we hike next week?" It would appear that Gwynn Creek is the choice, starting at Neptune beach.

More pictures of trees than people, and the crowd "debriefing" after completing the hike.

Click HERE for Kevin's Strava App

On a sunny but breezy Thursday, January 16, Margaret, Margo, Ineke, Rich, Paul and John explored the forest trails just west of the Crestview Heights Schools. Starting at Range Drive we headed south on the old logging roads, seeing numerous tracks of what was probably cougar. We climbed and descended many hills, until we turned back at the cell phone tower on Dahl's property. Our hour-long hike broke new ground for some of us, included tree and berry identification discussions, and was enjoyed by all.

The weekend rain paused, just for us, on Monday, January 13. New hikers Matt and Peggy(2), and Jack's Daughter Anna joined John, Margaret, Kevin, Peggy, Richard, Margo, Jim, Heather, Jack, Curt, Paul and Ineke. We selected Amanda's Trail and motored to Yachats. The ocean was still angry, but not nearly as much as the last few days. The scenery was beautiful, as always. We are not sure how we found our way without our leaders Gillian and Mary to guide us. When we reached Amanda's bridge, Heather, Curt and Jim showed Kevin and Peggy how steep the trail became beyond the bridge, and of course all decided that we must once again venture to hike the entire trail in the summer. When we returned to the cars, a few oystercatchers had joined the convention of sea gulls sitting on the rocks.

Link to Kevin's Strava App

In a steady drizzle on Thursday January 9, six intrepid Waldport Walkers gathered at Keady Wayside. Margo, Rich, Ineke, Paul, Heather and John, chose to seek the shelter of the Woodland Trail for their hike. Covered by the dense forest canopy, we were rarely aware of the continuing rain. The trail was in excellent condition, with no mud or slippery slopes thanks to the hardwood chipped surface. A detached rope banister has been reported to the City for repair. Our hike of just over an hour was enjoyed by all.

Monday, January 6. The few, the proud, the Marines, and we 15 hikers who carried out our annual US Marine obstacle course walk today. Rich and Margo, after enjoying the Woodland trail on Thursday, joined John, Margaret, Curt, Gillian, Jack, Heather, Mary, Kevin, Peggy, Paul, Ineke and Jim, and we headed for the "Berm trail." We did not intend to leave SeaHeart behind, and she arrived at Keady Wayside as we were all leaving, and followed us to the berm, which is actually Forest Service road 5361. We knew from the past that there were several berms across this trail evidently installed to discourage vehicle travel. What we did not anticipate were the number of trees, small and large, which had fallen across the trail, making progress slow and at times painful. A couple of us fell, and we also got a chance to practice long forgotten first aid to cuts. Actually made it to the "tee" at the end of road 5361, and took a right on road 412, which was also cluttered with fallen trees. Part way up this road is the pretty grotto shown in the photo below, thanks to Kevin and Peggy. The other photo is what remains of Curt's new truck after driving up to this spot. No, that truck has been abandoned there for years. We reached about 1500 feet elevation on this one.

It was way back in March 2011 that we first ventured up this trail, and it was much easier then, with few obstacles. Curt is going to send some more pics but I just had to start this report. More to follow.

Click here for Kevin's Strava App

Here are Curt's photos, and thank you Curt.

The Thursday hike on January 2 did occur. Paul and Ineke hosted two new hikers, and here is Paul's report. Thank you both.

Richard and Margo enjoyed their first walk with us as we hiked pretty much the whole Woodland Trail. As we began, we spotted a Blue Heron very near the entrance. By the time we turned back the temperature was much warmer and the sunshine was brighter, which made our walk even more pleasant. Margo and Richard were surprised and delighted to learn such a fine trail was so close by.

New Years Day 2014, Wednesday January 1, was the date of the first ever "First Day" hike (to be an annual event?) for the Waldport Walkers. We were joined by new hikers Patty, Brian, Heather's son, and his two daughters Emily and Abby. Heather, John, Margaret, Mary, Gillian and Jim did not attempt to keep up with the 10 and 8 year old girls, who enjoyed running along the scenic hike to the reservoir off Blodgett Road. Workers were on the job on this holiday, installing fiber optic cable along the power line. They had managed to create a lot of mud at the beginning of the road. As usual, our new hikers were impressed, as we always are, with the beauty of this particular venue. Someone had cleared the path to our photo site, so we took advantage of that as seen below. Happy New Year to all.

On Monday, December 30, a "King tide" was almost flooding our meeting place at Keady Wayside. The wind was coming up, so we decided to avoid the wind by heading for the forest road to the fish ladder. Heather, Curt, Jack, Mary, Gillian, Paul, Ineke, John, Margaret and Jim found the road into the place to be filled with deep potholes. Not to worry, we enjoyed the beauty of this place once again and among several discussions on this last hike of 2013, decided that we would have our own "First Day" hike on New Years Day, Wednesday, January 1, 2014. We will do this instead of the usual Thursday hike, and plan to meet at Keady Wayside at 9:30 AM as usual. Come join us. Photos from today by Gillian and Jim.

On Thursday December 26, (Boxing Day), Margaret and John decided to do their annual post-Christmas sweep of the Woodland Trail. On this lovely sunny day, we were delighted to find far less post-celebration trash than in years past, progress perhaps? Apart from a few mountain bike skid marks the trail was in excellent condition, and being enjoyed by several other hikers. The new maps which we have placed at various locations in South County are making people aware of our beautiful forest trail.

On a misty, mild morning twelve hikers gathered at Keady Wayside for our pre-Christmas hike.  We welcomed Betsy and Chris whose twelve- hour drive on Sunday from Southern California had brought them back to the coast for the holidays. We missed Jim whose family, also from Southern California, had arrived in the wee hours of the morning after a canceled flight. Hikers Paul, Ineke, Betsy, Chris, Kevin, Peggy John, Margaret,Maggie, Bill, Gillian and Mary proceeded to the Gerdemann Gardens in Yachats.  It was the first time some of our group had seen this local wonder.  Heading north on Starr Creek and down to the highway,   we completed our hike on the  804 Trail.  From there we wandered around a bit before returning to our vehicles.  The mist turned to rain as we headed home. 

To all our hiker friends from afar who joined us during   their summer visits to our coast, we wish you a Merry Christmas and we  look forward to your company again in 2014.

Click here for Kevin's App Map

On the sunny but frosty morning of Thursday December 19, Mary, Margaret, Ineke, Paul and John decided to hike the "Lake District" along Legion Road. We successfully skirted the many pools along our route, and enjoyed emerging into the sunny patches along the way. The ocean and bay views from the ridge-line were spectacular. Our hike of just over an hour covered new ground for Ineke and Paul.

What a difference a week makes! December 16 was spring-like, with bright sun, wild surf and much milder temperatures. Gillian, Curt, John, Margaret, Paul, Ineke, Mary, Bill, Maggie, Jack, Heather and Jim decided to revisit the Amanda trail, which turned out to be a fine choice with wonderful scenery. A great contrast looking from the dark forest to the bright ocean and surf. We stopped to examine the new memorial to Norman Kittel, and were impressed with new gravel added to the trail, and a new railing leading down to Amanda's statue at the bridge. As we traded information of our ailments, a couple of suggestions emerged to change the name of Waldport Walkers to the "Crips," but that was rejected. "Waldport Whiners" sounded good, or was it "Winers?" It was fun on a beautiful day.

Link to Jack's Strava Map

On a cloudy but dry Thursday, December 12, Ineke, Paul and John met at Keady Wayside. Before leaving on our hike, we were entertained by a flock of gulls feeding on a school of large leaping fish in the bay. The gulls were joined by several voracious harbor seals who added to the spectacle. We then explored the Woodland Trail, finding several sections still littered with ice. Sections of the trail had been re-chipped, and the trail was in excellent condition. Our 70-minute hike ended before the rains set in.

December 9 was the fourth consecutive day of freezing temperatures in Waldport. Foul weather clad John, Margaret, Bill, Maggie, Kevin, Peggy, Heather, Mary, Ineke, Jack, Curt and Jim could not wait to escape the east wind at Keady Wayside. We revisited Blodgett road and the hike to the reservoir, enjoying the winter wonderland in a rain forest. Someone suggested the word "brisk," which was very fitting. After returning to the cars we walked around the maintenance facility. The hike was short but very invigorating. Photos of our group at both ends of the trail, plus an ice formation along Big Creek.

Link to Kevin's Strava App

The weather had been bad again, but on Monday, December 2, we nine, Bill (welcome back), Maggie, John, Margaret, Gillian, Mary, Kevin, Jack and Jim headed for Cape Perpetua and the Giant Spruce trail. We parked at Captain Cook's bridge, and the spouting horn was working pretty well. We were pleasantly surprised to find the Visitors Center open for business, and the folks working told us they are closed Wednesday and Thursday during the winter season. The Spruce trail was wet in places, and Cape Creek was more like Cape River after all the recent rain. We returned through the campground road and since high tide was 9.3 feet at 11 o'clock, the spouting horn was really putting on an entertaining show when we got back there. We had experienced a few sprinkles, but as usual remained dry until the trip home, where we encountered a downpour north of Yachats.

Photos by Kevin

Here is a link to Jack's Strava map

And a link to Kevin's Strava. Some differences

On a sunny and breezy Thanksgiving Thursday, November 28, Mary, Margaret and John headed east from Keady Wayside to Lint Slough. We passed the piles of rubble left after the High School burn, and and on reaching the quiet beauty of the slough, we were met by a great egret stalking in the marsh. The trail was, as usual, lined with mushrooms, and the views of the slough through the trees were spectacular. We also passed several flocks of beautiful Mallard ducks splashing in the pools beside the slough. On the way back John veered off to the market, while Margaret and Mary returned to our cars, a hike of just over an hour. Happy Thanksgiving!

On Monday, November 25, Kevin and Peggy's visiting daughter Kelsey, Son-in-law Peder, and their son, our youngest hiker at 10 months of age, Elias, joined Maggie, Mary, Margaret, Heather, Gillian, Betsy (welcome back), Ineke, SeaHeart, John, Jack, Curt, Paul and Jim, and we headed for Cummins Creek to get out of the cold wind. Cummins Creek is a great trail and we thoroughly enjoyed the gradual uphill hike, followed by the downhill portion. Gillian and Curt got further up the trail than the rest of us, finding a "dead end" sign. Little Elias seemed to enjoy himself, riding in mom's back pack. He was very friendly, and fell asleep on the downhill trek. It seems all of us are having family visits either for Thanksgiving or Christmas.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone

Click here for Kevin's map app

On Thursday November 21, a sunny sky greeted Heather, Ineke, Paul, Kevin and John as they met at Keady Wayside. We elected to walk the Old Town Trail, heading north on the beach, under the bridge, and along the bay to the Port of Alsea docks. As we emerged from the bay a cold east wind greeted us, and frozen puddles signaled the coldest day of the fall thus far. On our way south on Mill Street, we introduced our newer hikers to the old Waldport gaol, which according to legend, closed in the 1950's after an inmate froze to death. At Highway 34 we turned west and returned to our starting point, a brisk hike of just under an hour.

And Here is a link to Kevin's Strava Map

The morning of November 18 did not look promising weather-wise, but that did not deter Paul, Ineke, Kevin, Peggy, John, Margaret, Curtis, Heather, Mary, Maggie and Jim, who met and headed for the "fish ladder" off Dick's Fork Road. The road was in bad shape, with deep potholes. Much to our amazement, Kevin, Peggy, Paul and Ineke had not witnessed this lovely walk in the past. All were surprised, as the rest of us have been, when the fish ladder appeared at the end of the trail. We encountered two armed hunters on the way in who had no luck thus far. After returning to the cars, we walked a short way along one of the roads which lead to this place. A lady from the ODFW arrived and opened the gate to the fish ladder road. We asked if she knew the history of the ladder, which she did not. On our final return to the cars it began to rain. Once again we remained dry while hiking.

Click here for Kevin's Strava plot

Special Report--ORTAC Trail Evaluation

On Saturday, November 16, Ineke, Margaret and John met the visiting Oregon Recreational Trails Advisory Council (ORTAC) at Keady Wayside in Waldport. After showing our twelve visitors the Keady kiosk with trail maps of South Lincoln County and Waldport, we proceeded to the Woodland Trail. This trail was built with funds obtained through ORTAC, and members were eager to see the product of their investment. They were delighted by what they saw, and especially impressed with the quality of the trail surface and it's drainage. They expressed amazement at how much trail we were able to build with the grant money provided. The occasional light drizzle did not dampen their enthusiasm during our hike of just over an hour.

On Thursday, November 14, John, Margaret, Paul, Ineke, Beth and Laurie met at Keady Wayside, while Mary, Maggie and Jim went directly to the base of the Woodland Trail to perform more maintenance. Beth and Laurie hiked the trail while the other four joined the maintenance effort. The City crew had left a wheelbarrow at the top of the switchbacks which helped our effort immensely. We completed chip spreading on the rest of the switchbacks and the short section above the switchbacks, all in under an hour. The trail is now ready for inspection by the Oregon Recreation Trails Advisory Council on Saturday. Thanks to everyone who helped.

On the 95th anniversary of Armistice Day, when hostilities ended on the Western Front, signaling the end of World War 1, 11/11, 11 hikers met at Keady Wayside. John informed us that the Oregon Recreational Trails Advisory Committee, who provided the grant for the construction of our Woodland Trail, will be inspecting their investment on next Saturday. The trails crew had visited last Friday, see below, but did not complete the maintenance on the trail. John, Margaret, Curtis and Jim volunteered to perform some chip additions to the Woodland Trail swichbacks, while Gillian, Mary, Jayne (welcome back!), Maggie, Leslie (welcome back!), George and Jack decided to hike Dick's Fork road and the "Foxglove meadow," where foxgloves no longer grow. Gillian photographed some interesting fungi growing on a stump, plus the other six hikers obviously enjoying their 90 minute hike.

Meanwhile the maintenance crew spread chips. Margaret sacrificed bed sheets which we used as buckets. One sheet tore, causing us to sing "My Bucket's Got a Hole in it" until it finally tore completely. Curtis shoveling chips, John shoveling and Margaret hefting a loaded sheet on her back. We covered the top two switches in the switchbacks, for 110 minutes and curiously logged 2.7 miles.

Special Notice--Thanks to the work crews on the Woodland Trail

Friday, November 8, found the work crews spreading more chips on the Woodland Trail, led by Trail Engineer Andrew, shown giving instructions to his volunteer group in the first photo, the group getting started in the second, and some of the wonder of the Woodland Trail in the third. In the first, the familiar red van which always signals that these folks are at work. A big THANK YOU to all of them.

On Thursday, November 7, in a light drizzle, Heather, Margaret and John ascended the Woodland Trail. We found that our City Crew had placed five big piles of wood chips in preparation for Friday's trail repair session by our original trail builders. We admired large clusters of a variety of colorful mushrooms, and a few patches of the beautiful but poisonous red and white Fly Agaric toadstools. There were also a surprising number of the delicate white and cream-colored Indian Pipes sprouting from the roots of our large conifers. During our return trip the sun broke through the forest canopy, and our hour-long hike ended in sunshine.

On November 4 we were promised rain which, as usual, did not arrive. SeaHeart, Susanna, Mary, Gillian, Margaret, Beth, Laurie, Heather, Curtis, Jack, John and Jim decided to revisit the Blodgett Road rainforest. It was a good choice, as SeaHeart and Susanna had not ventured there before and thoroughly enjoyed the scenery. We managed to split into about three different groups on our return from the reservoir. Some of us navigated, with difficulty, the "lower" trail along Big Creek which had been partially blocked. Others went up Blodgett Road. Many varieties of edible mushrooms were found and harvested. A small sea captain was found in a tree at the reservoir. Compare the two photos below to see if you agree that the sea captain resembles our leader, John.

Here is a link to Jack's Strava App Click Here

In a light drizzle on Halloween Thursday, October 31, Beth, Laurie and John decided to hike Amanda's Trail. John had heard that Joanne Kittel had placed a new memorial to her late husband Norm on the section of trail crossing her land, and we ventured forth to view it. We hiked from Yachats Ocean Road, and soon after passing the beautiful ocean overlook, and found the statue depicting two bears in the forest, a delightful creation. Thanks to the forest canopy we hardly noticed the raindrops during our hike of just over an hour. Photo by Beth.

October 28 was sunny and cold. Kevin's visiting brother Steve and his wife Janice joined Kevin, Peggy, John, Margaret, George, Gillian, Beth, Laurie, Jack, Heather, Mary, Maggie and Jim, and we headed for Cape Perpetua, where the sun and surf made for beautiful scenery. The spouting horn was quiet despite the surf, and we decided that the swells were arriving at the wrong angle to get the horn working. We crossed under the highway via the tunnel and headed south on the Oregon Coast Trail. At the intersection of Gwynn Creek Trail we elected to go out on Neptune Beach, which was pretty narrow due to the high tide. Group photo at Neptune by Peggy. Spectacular sun ray photo by Gillian.

Kevin's Strava App

On a cloudy and cool Thursday October 24, Margaret and John took visiting friends Margaret and Norm to see the new Woodland Trail signs and the now completed trail. With new knowledge and awareness of mushrooms stemming from their Mushroom Festival experience, our visitors were astonished and delighted by the numbers and variety of mushrooms beside the trail. It was a wonderful hike of well over an hour, unfortunately marred by the discovery that someone had stolen one of our new trail signs. Why, why, why

On foggy October 21, twelve hikers met and decided to pursue the graded road on the new State Park property north of Fern Ridge Cemetery. George, Gillian, Maggie, Mary, Margaret, John, Peggy, Kevin, Heather, Jack, Curtis and Jim drove to the cemetery and started north. We found the wye in the road where the graded section started, and trekked in. There were a few muddy spots and SOME of us did not notice we were going continuously down hill. After a long hike, we were ready to turn around, but Gillian sensed that we were very near the ODOT facility, so we followed her lead, and lo, around the next curve loomed the ODOT buildings. We would have quit about 100 yards from our desired destination. Thanks Gillian. Along the way we found some interesting snags, animal tracks, and at the ODOT facility, the "Sequoia Tree" that John kept promising, which turned out to be a cell tower. Photos by Jim, video by Kevin, and the Strava App link from Kevin.

Can't make this video work, so here is a photo by George:

Strava App click here

Only Heather and John showed up for our Thursday, October 17 hike in the fairest of weather. Where were you fellow "fair-weather hikers"? Our sunny and windless hike was an exploration of new trails cut into the forest east of the Waldport Forest Service Ranger Station. The trails branch off the loop trail and wind through the forest, passing several trashy abandoned encampments, and emerging at Kelsie Lane near Range Drive. After cleanup, this could be part of a future hike connecting with the Waterline and Woodland Trails.

October 14, on which Columbus Day was celebrated, dawned bright and sunny. New hiker Susana arrived at Keady Wayside with returnee SeaHeart. They joined Mary, Maggie, Heather, Gillian, George, John, Bill, Bill2, Jack, and Jim on a trip to the 804 Trail in Yachats. We started at the State Park and hiked up on to the beach and returned, for 3.8 miles according to Jim's pedometer. I'm sure George will send a copy of the group photo he took on the beach, and Jack will send the Strava plot, but for now we must settle for this photo of the beautiful ocean and beach. First update: Here is Jack's Strava plot, but he says it can't be correct, and I agree. It does, however, show where we hiked. Second edit, here is George's photo.

Click Here

On a sunny Thursday, October 10, Heather, Margaret, and Vic were delighted to hear from John that the Woodland Trail signs had been installed. they were eager to see them, and were all very impressed with what they saw. Positive comments were made about the colorful newt photo, the other nature illustrations, and the historic information on the signs. The signs are at the ballfields trailhead, at the Skate Park, and at Crestline Park. We found that our City Crew had removed the tree blocking the trail near the southernmost trailhead. Thank you for your prompt response!

Once again the night rain diminished for our October 7 morning hike. John, Margaret, Mary, Gillian, Beth, Laurie, Kevin, Jack and Jim went to the galleries in Yachats and hiked the Gerdemann Gardens trail as far as Starr Creek, where we turned around and backtracked to the entrance of the Fisterra or "Yahike" trail, which we traversed to Diversity Drive, hazardously crossed Highway 101 and went north on the 804 trail. We reversed course at the beach and crossed 101 at the Overleaf Lodge. It turned out to be a beautiful day. The first two photos are on the Fisterra trail, and the group photo is on the 804. Kevin provided a link to his Strava App, for a map of our course.

Click here for map app

On a sunny, windless, but chilly Thursday, October 3, Margaret, Vic and John decided to hike the Woodland Trail. Considering the violence of our recent storms, the trail was remarkably clear, until we encountered a downed tree blocking the trail near the southernmost trailhead. At the trailhead itself, a blocked drain has resulted in partial washout of the trail. A project for our Waldport Walkers trails crew perhaps? Our return trip on the sun-dappled trail was uneventful; a delightful 70-minute hike on a beautiful sunny day.

Following two days of very stormy weather and forecasts for more, only five hikers met at Keady Wayside on the last day of September. The foolish five? Kevin had not been to our lovely rainforest off Blodgett Road, so that's where we, John, Margaret, Kevin, Mary and Jim went, and it was quite amazingly dry and as usual, beautiful. Every time we visit this road, the lighting conditions seem different, and the moss covered trees are just unreal. Big Creek was flowing like we have never seen it, even in mid winter. Guess what, it did not rain until over an hour after we completed our trek. We were not foolish, maybe we were the Fab five or the Fearless five. Photo at the reservoir courtesy of Kevin, as is the link to his Strava app plot. Thanks, Kevin.

Click Here for plot

Rain on the morning of September 23 did not bode well for our first hike of Autumn. Regardless, John, Margaret, Heather, Mary, Gillian, Bill2, Kevin and Jim met at Keady Wayside. After our adventure last week, a suggestion was made to start at the ODOT facility at Ona Beach to see if we could find the other end of the road we found the prior week. Off we went, and drove all over the ODOT site before conversing with an employee there who indicated that we could not access the road from there. Plan B went into effect and we headed for the Beaver Creek Natural Area. It turned out to be pretty wet, and after we passed the approximate halfway point on the lower loop trai, we split into two groups. Gillian, Heather, Bill2 and Kevin went ahead on the loop trail while John, Jim, Margaret and Mary retraced their steps back the way we had come. Kevin's app with the link below shows that their group, though the terrain was more difficult, traveled 3.2 miles, whereas the other group traveled 3.99 miles and were the second group to arrive back at the cars. To top it all off, we did not experience one drop of rain while hiking, but as we started back to town in the cars, it once again began to rain. This is getting surreal.

Click here for Kevin's Strava App plot

On a bright, sunny, and windless Thursday September 19, Beth, Laurie, Heather, Margaret, Finn, Vic and John headed south along the beach on the Oregon Coast Trail. We passed many fishing boats in the Alsea River jaws, and then headed landward toward the Bunker Creek beach access. We crossed the highway and followed the old railroad right-of-way to the Ranger Station Trail. This forest trail was clearly seldom used, since it displayed a rich growth of edible lobster mushrooms. We passed a new trail cut through the forest (to be explored soon!), ascended to Norwood Drive, and then down to the bayside, a hike of exactly one hour.

Monday, September 16 found fewer hikers meeting at Keady Wayside. John, Margaret, Bill, Maggie, Kevin, Peggy, Vic, Jim, Heather, Mary and George drove to Fern Ridge cemetery in Seal Rock. From there we hiked north on the dirt roads and into the new property obtained by the State Parks. There are many side roads off this maze, and more investigation is in order. At what appeared to be "end of the road," we found evidence of partying and recreational shooting. A slug charged toward John at the party site. We also found a short trail that led to a viewpoint of Beaver Creek. This was all new territory to us. Bill, Maggie and Margaret picked up a lot of trash, more than we have seen for quite some time. Upon returning home and perusing the topographic maps, that newly cleared road we found on our return hike definitely is the one that leads to the ODOT site, and in fact is an extension of Huckleberry Hill Road. Kevin sent pics of the attacking slug and the sign on the gate. There is also a link to his Strava App, and you can see how close we were to Beaver Creek. EDIT: George sent a photo of our diligent clean up crew.


On Thursday September 12, Heather, Margaret, Vic and John decided to explore the forest trail on the West Bank of Lint Slough. The trail needs a lot of trimming, but the views were spectacular. We saw several great blue herons, a great egret, and what was possibly a bald eagle. We did not see our river otter friends. After exploring a trail to the bank of the slough, and a possible western access, we returned to Keady Wayside, a hike of exactly one hour.

On September 9, new hiker Sherry, along with guests LaurieA, Nicole (Jim's daughter and granddaughter), joined George, Mary, John, Margaret, Finn, Barb, Joyce, Heather, Vic with Kona, Curtis, Ruth, Beth, Laurie, Kevin, Peggy, Jack, Bill, Rod, Gayle, Jim, and two that I have missed. Can anyone help me? John and Mary replied, and I left out Maggie and Tammy, sorry ladies. LaurieA desired to hike the Pacific Coast Trail south of Cape Perpetua to Neptune Beach, and that is what this group did. Once again the mussels and starfish were found on the "living" rock at Neptune Beach. Photos will follow, and here is a link to Jack's Strava App showing our hike. CLICK HERE

Photo of the group by George, and thank you George

A warm and windless day greeted our Waldport Walkers on Thursday, September 5. Heather, Vic with Kona, and John ascended the Woodland Trail. At the bottom of the switchbacks we found two tents and two bikes with trailers, but no sign of movement. When we descended the switchbacks on our return trip we found the campers gone, and one of the rope banisters sliced. Why? Why? We returned to Keady Wayside in just over an hour to find the Alsea River jaws packed with fishing boats. The Chinook are in!

On Labor Day, September 2, Finn and Barb's sister in law Cindy joined us and we welcomed Ruth back to the fold. Those four, along with Mary, Beth, Laurie, George, Gillian, Curtis, Bill, Maggie, Bill2, Don, Carolyn, John, Margaret and Jim headed for the "Fish Ladder" road, which in actuality is Forest Service Road 411. It had rained during the night, but we were greeted by sunbreaks along the road, which was beautiful as always. Dick's Fork Creek was not as robust as it is in the spring, but was running. It is always fun to see our first time hikers react to the view of the "fish ladder" when we reach the end of the road. As usual many photos were taken. I got one of everyone milling around, and another of the perspective of the trees and how insignificant we all look next to them. All of those fallen alder trees are calling to us to haul them off for firewood. Today we were happy wanderers. Val Deri, Val Dera.

Here is one from our professional photographer, George

On a drizzly but warm Thursday August 29, Beth, Laurie, Mary and John headed for the Woodland Trail to seek shelter from the rain. As we started ascending through the old growth nurse stumps, the clouds parted and sunbeams streamed down upon us through the giant old trees, the sudden change in the weather bringing smiles to our faces. We saw many mushrooms on our hike, mostly rosy russulas, and on our return trip we came upon a beautiful display of bright orange lobster mushrooms on an old stump. As we reached Keady Wayside at the end of our 70-minute hike, it started raining again; perfect timing!

New hikers Brian and Alison joined the group at Keady Wayside on August 26. Along with John, Margaret, Finn, Barb, Rod, Gayle, George, Gillian, Beth, Laurie, Bill, Maggie, Carolyn, Mary, Jack and Jim, headed for Cummins Creek Trail at Cape Perpetua. It was a great day in the forest, featuring sun breaks and wind in the trees. We got pretty strung out on the trail as can be seen from the photos attached. Everyone turned around at the two mile point and headed back to the cars. Gillian and Jim checked out the trail to the actual Cummins Creek and it is much easier to access than in the past. Next time we should start there. There were some campers near the parking area and we met another hiker on the trail. Guess what folks, this afternoon it's raining. Someone looking out for us once again.

Here is a link to Jack's Strava App: CLICK HERE

Thursday, August 22 was misty and still when Betsy, Mary, Vic and John chose to hike Waldport's Old Town Loop Trail. We walked north along the beach, under the bridge, and passed several people pumping for ghost shrimp along the edge of the bay. Upon reaching Robinson Park, we admired the new fish cleaning station, and then watched two people precariously perched on the power poles in the bay, stringing a new line. At the bakery on Mill street we paused, and then we each went our separate ways, completing our hikes in just over an hour.

August 19 was beautiful and sunny, which really accentuates the beauty of our coastal neighborhood. 18 hikers met at Keady and motored to Cook's Chasm, where we hiked down the Pacific Coast Trail to Neptune Beach, avoiding Gwynn Creek due to wasp attacks reported there. Let's see if I can get all of us: John, Margaret, Finn, Barb, George, Gillian, Kevin, Peggy, Jack and his daughter Anna, Heather and her grandson Sean, Mary, Leslie, Bill2, Vic, Jim, and Betsy. We made it just about 4 miles. George and Jim's pedometers agreed exactly when we reached the halfway point at Cummins Creek where we witnessed a poor stricken Common Murre chick struggling for life in the surf. Several other folks were on the beach. Photos by Kevin and Jim

Here is a link to Kevin's Strava App: CLICK HERE

A heavy mist greeted the Waldport Walkers on Thursday, August 15, so we decided to introduce our new hiker Anna (Jack's daughter) to the well-sheltered Woodland Trail. Heather, Margaret, Mary, Anna, Jack, Finn, and John ascended the trail, while Betsy, with Asher in a stroller, took a more circuitous hard-surface route up to Crestline Park. After introducing Asher (and some of the adults) to the playground animals, we proceeded to show Anna the various branches of the trail. On our return trip we saw ripe but unreachable thimble berries, and enjoyed the plump and sweet salal berries. A very enjoyable 70-minute hike.

On August 12, Joyce returned to our group, bringing new hiker Tammy with her. Jack brought his wife, new hiker Linda. The four of them joined Vic with Kona, Leslie, Bill2, Mary, Heather, Gillian, George, John, Margaret, Chris, Betsy, Finn, Barb, Kevin and Peggy for a total of 20 hikers. Joyce suggested the 804 trail and off we went to the State Park in Yachats. Before we became spread out, we had become somewhat of a tourist attraction, with people coming out on their porches to witness our parade. There were a lot of other hikers on the trail today along with a lot of friendly dogs. As we passed just north of the Adobe, we spotted a whale, which soon turned out to be whales, as in two or three. We guessed a mom and calf, and they put on quite a show for us for the remainder of our hike, blowing and showing fins and flukes. We continued on to the beach where we found a large number of crabs which had washed up on the beach, deceased. Another guess was a commercial crabber had tossed them overboard and they washed up in a group. The seagulls were feasting. Another lovely day for hiking, and here are a couple of photos.

Link to Kevin's Strava AppCLICK HERE

A beautiful sunny day greeted us on Thursday, August 8 as we gathered at Keady Wayside. Several of our out-of-town visitors had asked about the Giant Spruce Trail at Cape Perpetua, so we decided to make that our destination. Todd, Annie, and sons Trevor and Aaron, and Betsy's son Brad, joined his mother, Mike, Christy, Jeremy, Grace, Finn, Heather, Kevin, Mary, Vic (with Kona), Margaret and John for our hike. Our route was through the tunnel under the highway, up past the Visitor Center, and then followed the lush wooded trail along the gurgling Cape Creek. Upon our arrival at the 500-year-old Sitka Spruce, the children played in the creek, while the adults rested and chatted. Before leaving on our return trip, the kids showed us how easy it was to crawl through the tunnel formed by the tree's roots. We returned via the same route, pausing for a short inspection of the Visitor Center. A most enjoyable hike of just over an hour. Here is a group photo courtesy of Kevin, and a link to Kevin's Strava App.


Once again on August 4 a large group collected at Keady Wayside. We welcomed new hiker Leslie, the return of Mark, and Finn and Barb, John and Margaret's son Mike, his wife Christy and children Jeremy and Grace. They were all joined by George, Gillian, Mary, Betsy, Rod, Gayle, Bill, Maggie, Bill2, Jack and Jim. With the new folks, we decided to return to the beautiful road off Blodgett Road, which is always a joy to visit. This trip was no exception. Big Creek was not running as full as it had been in the spring, but we could still enjoy the sound of it and view the waterfall. Grace took to protecting any slugs we encountered, such that they did not get trampled. Jeremy is making a film and we are sure this trail might be part of it. After reaching the reservoir and returning to the cars, we once again split into two groups, Gillian leading about half the folks up Blodgett Road, and John leading the rest down to Big Creek, which we discovered could be crossed, which Mike did. We then went along the spongy moss covered trail that led back to the "Men at Work" area. Here are a couple of candid shots of the group enjoying the creek at the reservoir.

Here is a link to Jack's Strava plot of our hike


On the first day of August, foggy and warm, Betsy and John arrived at Keady Wayside for a Thursday hike. They decided to go their separate ways, Betsy around town doing her chores, and John, off to explore possible new trail routes west of Lint Slough. John was welcomed to the slough by four Great Egrets back from their winter migration, and by two river otters eyeing his progress along the bank. The wild roses are in bloom, vying with Queen Anne's Lace, yarrow, and purple thistles along the shoreline. Once in the forest, he explored the route of the old Lint Slough Road, as well as several possible paths to the water's edge and up the hill toward Township 13. His hike of just under an hour revealed much promise for a beautiful new trail.

July 29 saw a collection of 21 hikers gather at Keady Wayside. New hikers Seaheart and her son Ananda joined Rod, Gayle, Curtis, Bill, Mary, Gillian, Sharron, Sue, Diana, John, Margaret, Vic with Kona, Jack, Helen, Betsy, Chris, Carolyn, George and Jim. Jim had suggested a return to Beaver Creek Natural Area to explore the Elk Meadow and Bear Valley trails, which required an initial climb up the mountainous Loop trail. From there we proceeded further "up" on Elk Meadow, which opened into a real meadow, and there was a trace of a trail leading further, which we took, discovering snakes, and it went down as far as we had already gone up. We reached a barbed wire fence, which caused us to turn around and retrace our recent down. This had become the recreation of the Bataan death march, and by the time we got back to the top, it proved too much for Helen, who had to take a long break and was definitely badly affected by the march. After Helen had recovered, we split into groups, some returning to cars while others went on to Snaggy Point. Having earned my third or fourth oak leaf cluster for my "Don't Follow Me" badge, I still want to return to the Bear Valley Trail. Any takers? Not likely. Photo at top of the Loop hill.

On the breezy and cool morning of Thursday July 25, Betsy, Laurie, Beth, Chris and John decided to introduce Nan and Dennis to the Woodland Trail. Photographs and a map of the trail showing it's location and the eight access points can now be found on the Waldport City website under "WHAT'S THERE TO DO?". Other than some bicycle skid marks, the trail was in good condition, and our hike of just over an hour was enjoyed by all.

Another nice day greeted us on July 22, and 22 hikers gathered for a trip to Legion Road. Six new hikers joined the group, and we welcomed Bill, Barb, Dennis, Nan, Rod and Gayle. They accompanied Mary, Margaret, John, Gillian, Laurie, Beth, Curtis, Maggie, Bill (welcome back), Vic with Kona, Heather, Vern, Jim, George, Kevin and Peggy. About a mile along our usual road, we took a turn to the east and another to the south, which actually was new territory for the group. We noticed that Dave had a new sign posted at his place, "Children at Play." I wonder if it was directed at us? We did not see any blackberries along this usually prolific berry site, and decided it was too early to expect any. Upon returning to the cars, we discovered that Beth and Laurie were missing. A search party was assembled, and between walking and Bill and Maggie driving up the road just hiked, we honed our tracking skills and determined that they had made a wrong turn at the first "Y" we came to, and were getting worried. By the time we did find them, they had probably hiked about six miles, had encountered an illegal immigrant camp, were frightened, and glad to see us in the car. Heck, we need a little excitement once in while, don't we? Here are a couple of candid shots of this large group.

And here is a link to Kevin's Strava App, which is getting more impressive every week. An overlay of this on a topo map proved it was new territory. Thanks, Kevin.


On the morning of Thursday July 18 the sun was shining, the tide was high, and the north wind was beginning to blow. Betsy, Heather, Gillian, George, Chris, John, and Vic with Kona on his leash, sought shelter from the wind on the Woodland Trail. We found that a branch of the trail needs some trimming of invading vines, which could become a project for our Waldport Walkers Trails Maintenance Group. The lower section of the switchbacks has a fresh layer of wood chips covering the gravel, which was becoming a slippery slope. Near the end of our enjoyable 70-minute hike Gillian harvested her first blackberry of the season.

It is summer and the winds greeted us on July 15. We welcomed new hikers Jack and Linda, who joined Vic (with Kona), Kevin, Peggy, John, Margaret, Gillian, Heather, Mary, Chris, Betsy, Jayne, Sharron, Maggie and Jim. We headed for Gerdemann Gardens and then continued up the hill to the reservoir. This trail was dry today. Upon our return to the Gardens, some of us elected to continue on to the Fisterra Trail. (I cannot pronounce the new name for that trail, and John suggests it should be pronouned "Ya Hike," which sounds good, and appropriate, to me.) The Fisterra trail appears to have heavy use compared to some of the others we frequent, but it is a very enjoyable experience. Rather than take organized group photos I got a couple of candid ones, leaving the area of the reservoir, where we were joined by the friendly, frisky yellow Labrador, and going up the hill on the Fisterra trail.

And what is becoming a welcome weekly edition, a link to Kevin's Strava App, showing our hike.


On a balmy Thursday July 11, Ineke and Paul, Betsy and Chris, John and George (welcome back!) ascended the Woodland Trail. On our way up we saw a mushroom-chomping squirrel, and commented on the newly-placed mileage signs. Thank you. At our turnaround point, George amused us with his therapist-inspired heaven-gazing exercise. We returned to Keady Wayside in just over an hour. Well done George after your long layoff!

Another sunny, windy day, July 8, saw a group of 15 hikers interested in excercise. Beth, Jayne, Kevin, Peggy, Curtis, Mary, Gillian, Vern, John, Margaret, Paul, Ineke, Laurie, Vic (with Kona) and Jim (please let me know if I omitted anyone) headed for Cape Perpetua. We were saddened to learn of the death of Dave Redetzke over the weekend, hit by a car in Yachats. He was a fixture around Waldport for years. We had to avoid a large group of bicyclists near Cape Perpetua. There is no room for them along that stretch of road. Almost as soon as we started out from Cook's Chasm bridge, we separated into two groups. Some went to the tide pools while others continued up under highway 101 to the Pacific Coast Trail. We traversed it south to the Gwynn Creek Trail and headed inland on that trail. It was a beautiful day for hiking in this scenic wonderland.

And here is a link to Kevin's app results, showing a distance of 4.6 miles.


On a sunny but windy Thursday July 4, Betsy, Chris, Ineke, Paul, Margaret, John, and Vic, with Kona on a leash, set off on our Independence Day hike. With plastic bags in hand, we left Keady Wayside and headed south along the beach, cleaning up the aftermath of last night's celebrations. Spent fireworks, beverage bottles, cans and other litter, soon filled our bags, which we emptied upon reaching Governor Patterson State Park. We returned along an inland route following the old railroad right-of-way. Our 70-minute hike was both meaningful and enjoyable.

Editor's note: Thank you all for cleaning up after those who seem to be incapbable of cleaning up after themselves.

July 1, and the year 2013 is half over. How did that happen? 13 hikers gathered at Keady Wayside and Heather suggested checking the "foxglove meadow," so we drove there. Soon, the Women Waldport Walkers whizzed way ahead of the rest of us. Mary, Gillian, Maggie, Betsy, Margaret, Heather and Laurie got out in front, leaving Paul, Ineke, (welcome back), Chris, John, Jim and Vic (with Kona) in their dust. The nighttime fog must have been quite thick, as the road was damp. When we reached the meadow, there were actual foxgloves there, but there were more blackberries, and that will be a great place to pick them soon. We hiked back to Dick's Fork road and went up the road and explored some side trails. Heather and Gillian went further than the rest of us, invesigating a power line access road that was newly plowed. Our group was not as enthusiastic as usual and we decided that the humidity was to blame, resulting in only 3.36 miles accumulated.

The June 27 Thursday hike attracted 11 people on the warmest day we have seen in some time, accompanied by humidity that could be seen. John, Laurie, Beth, Maggie, Heather, Carolyn, Betsy, Chris, (welcome back, you two), Kevin, Peggy and Jim all met at Keady Wayside and set off for the Woodland Trail. Kevin had brought his smart phone with the mapping app, so he, Peggy and Jim separated from the rest of the group at the first short offshoot on the trail, the one that leads to Pacific View drive. The "mappers" did the same at each little side trail, so we never caught up with the main hiking group until we crossed paths just south of the skate park. We returned to the meeting place in separate groups, and logged 2.1 miles in 65 minutes. Below is a link to Kevin's map of the trail. Notice the height increase at the switchbacks.

Click Here

June 24, following Sunday's rain, the hiker population declined from 30 to seven. John, Margaret, Maggie, Mary, Beth, Laurie and Jim elected to return to the fish ladder road, which turned out to be an excellent choice. Evidently the South Lincoln Water District folks have cut down a great number of Alder trees along the road. John and Jim want to get some, for firewood. We did see a few salamanders and snails, and heard a lot of chatter from the birds, even an owl. Foxgloves have popped up everywhere along the road. Laurie drove out through the Eckmann Lake road, which showed to be seven miles from Keady Wayside, which, by the way, sports a new small sign to identify it (the wayside). Now we need to measure the mileage using the 101 route. Here are some of the hikers amidst a group of foxgloves.

On Thursday, June 20, Beth, Laurie and John welcomed Marc from Scottsdale, Arizona, by introducing him to our beautiful Woodland Trail. As always a good shelter from the steady drizzle, the forest was a good place to be today. Sweetie Pie, Mark's canine companion, constantly sniffing, obviously enjoyed the experience. After showing our new hiker the major trailheads along Crestline Drive, we returned, emerging from the forest in just under an hour, to find that the rain had subsided. Mark expressed his delight at discovering the Woodland Trail.

We set a new record for the number of participating hikers on Monday, June 17, with 30! We welcomed new hiker Allison and welcomed back Carolyn and Nate, Curtis's son. They joined Beth, Laurie, Terry, Helen, Mary, Jayne, Peggy, Maggie, Sharron, Sue, Vic, Bill, Curtis, Kevin, John, Elliot, Jim, J.D., Kristi, Emily, Katherine, Phillip, Simon, Ana, Kristin, Meadow and Willow, and we motored to Beaver Creek State natural area where we took up the entire parking area. Our three canines, Charlie, Kona and Dillon were once again with us and very well behaved. For the first time (I think) we traversed the entire outer Beaver Creek Loop trail, as well as the trail to Snaggy Point. Newcomers were disappointed at the view from Snaggy Point, as a fog bank had rolled in. The ranger crew had done a lot of mowing and grooming of the trails, much appreciated by this group. We do question the mileage shown on the official trail map, stated to be 2.1 miles around the loop. Three of us with pedometers and GPS showed closer to 4 miles. Another great hiking day.

What a crew, at Snaggy Point, and it is not all of us.

Once again, Kevin sent a report of our hike at Click Here and it confirms that we surely did the entire loop. Look at that hill!

In a light drizzle on Thursday, June 13, Terry, Elliott and John teamed up to measure the Woodland Trail in preparation for adding more distance markers to those already in place. John brought a measuring wheel, and when he saw how expertly first Elliott, and later Terry, handled it, he chose to be record keeper! We confirmed that the markers in place were accurate, and then identified where further signs should be placed. The city is currently developing a map of the trail, which could include the information gathered today. Two hikers we met en route were delighted with the trail, and indicated an interest in joining our Waldport Walkers group. We ended our hour-long hike with no drizzle, a productive and enjoyable 13th!

The Keady Wayside parking area was filled to overflowing with cars on Monday, June 10. It must be summer. New hiker Peggy, Kevin's wife, and returning hikers Bill, Maggie, Sharron and Sue (welcome back!) joined Kristi, Katherine, Emily, Meadow, Willow, Beth, Helen, Jayne, Gillian, Mary, Margaret, Terry, John, Vic, Curtis, Kevin, Elliot and Jim for a total of 23 hikers. Discussions ensued, and John's suggestion of starting at the spouting horn at Cape Perpetua was overruled due do wind concerns. Our second choice was the Cummins Creek trail at Cape Perpetua. Our convoy of cars filled the parking area at the trailhead, and off we went, men once again outnumbered by the ladies better than two to one. Oh, and canine hikers Kona, Dillon and Charlie were also along. It did not take long for the group of Gillian, Sharron, Sue, Curtis, Katherine and Emily to get far ahead of the rest of us. At the fork in the trail where the steep one goes left and the less steep one right, we finally caught up with some of the leaders. Emily had tried the steep one for some distance and returned to the main trail. At the two mile point, we slower folks encountered the leaders who had turned around to head back to the cars. On the way back we saw a few sun breaks which really light up the green in the forest. The photographs do not include all hikers as we were quite spread out along the trail. The site where the tree lies across the trail is one chosen for a group shot, but only contains a few folks. It was, as usual, a fun day filled with cameraderie.

If you want to see what we did today, check out Kevin's Strava app at Click Here Fascinating.

On a sunny but windy Thursday June 6, Beth, Terry (with Dillon on a leash), Ineke, Paul, Vic (with Kona on a leash), and John, sought shelter from the wind in the maze of logging roads in the forest south of Range Drive. Since this was new ground for four members of our group, John showed them the various landmarks to orientate them. At various times we were able to see the golf course, the new high school, and the cell tower on Dahl's property to the south. On our return, on one of the loops in the maze, we found the remains of "Jim's house", now a pile of planks. An exploration of new ground for four of us, our hike of just under an hour was enhanced by the sighting of a deer and of a basking garter snake.

On our first June hike, on the 3rd, the male population, Simon, John, Curtis, Paul and Jim were heavily outnumbered by the ladies, Gillian, Beth, Heather, Mary, Terry, Laurie, Kristi, Katherine, Lily, Ineke, Margaret and Helen. Simon brought Charlie the dog along. In our discussions at Keady Wayside, it was suggested that we drive to the Fern Ridge cemetery in Seal Rock and explore the roads north of there that are part of the new extension of Beaver Creek natural area. Gillian joked (we thought) that we should all stop at George's. Well, several did, and those of us who had gone directly to the cemetery were worried. John drove back down and met the folks who started out at George's hiking up TO the cemetery, and George accompanied them part way. I will not attempt to list the participants of the different groups. Those of us who started at the cemetery hiked along a few different roads until we found a new gate labeled property of State of Oregon Parks. We went along that trail which became more muddy as it tracked north. Some of us turned around and started back, discovering the group who started at George's. Confused? I was, to the point that I forgot I had my camera along. A photo of us constructing the large arrow in the middle of the road to show the other group which way we went would have made a great photo. This maze of roads will be interesting to search further. We encountered a man hiking in the opposite direction, with two very friendly dogs. John identified him as the owner of the property on which the cemetery is situated, and some surrounding property. It was fun. No guess as to mileage.

On a warm and sunny Thursday May 30, Beth, Laurie, Terry, Heather, Ineke, Paul and John ascended the Woodland Trail. We found that the City Crew had removed the large tree which blocked the trail last week. Thank you! On our way back we detoured to show our newer hikers the old dam on the Red River, part of Waldport's early water supply. We enjoyed our delightfully warm hike of just over an hour.

Photo thanks to Terry

On May 27, a wet and windy Memorial Day, nine hikers set out in Kristi's van for Blodgett Road and our waterfall trail. Following a week of rain, the trail was a series of puddles, but John, Margaret, Kristi, Simon, Katherine, Willow (with Charlie on his leash), Mary and our newest members Ineke and Paul were well-prepared in full rain gear. The minuscule frog captured by Simon ended up with Willow.  The creek was full and the falls as spectacular  as ever. Unfortunately none of us had a camera to capture four-year old Willow in her over-sized raincoat and boots leading the affable Charlie through the woods. Once back at Kristi's  van, with winds whipping  up again, no one suggested adding more miles to our Memorial Day walk in the woods. Thanks to Mary for the report.

After two days of solid rain, Thursday, May 23 arrived with a promise of better weather. New Waldport Walkers, Ineke and Paul, were introduced to the Woodland Trail by Margaret and John. As newcomers to the area, they were delighted to discover this beautiful forest trail, now enhanced by numerous wildflowers. A very large tree, brought down during the rainstorm, blocked the southern section of the trail. Waldport City Crew will remove the tree on Friday. Our hike of just over an hour was enjoyed by all.

May 20 was a beautiful day. New-to-Monday hikers Helen, Elliott (and Dillon), Kevin and Jackie were welcomed to the group, and they joined regulars Vic (and Kona), Kristi, Katherine, Meadow, Willow, Terry, John, Margaret, Curtis, Gillian, Jim, Mary, and Beth for a trek through Gerdemann Gardens and beyond. The owners of Gerdemann Gardens have constructed a new boardwalk along part of the trail, and placed some new signs. It is always nice there, and today the wet parts of the trail were dryer than usual. At the end of the trail we took the road up to the South Lincoln Water District reservoir, where the group photo below was taken. Look carefully next to Vic and Kona in front of Kristi to find Willow, who kind of blended in with her surroundings. Returning to the Gardens, we split into two groups, one group returning directly to the cars and the other hiking over the Fisterra trail, which just keeps receiving more improvements. Our diverse group emerged, fittingly, on Diversity Drive and returned to the cars. John's pedometer and Kevin's GPS record logged a little over four miles.

On Thursday May 16, a sunny and windless morning greeted our Waldport Walkers. Laurie, Terry (with Dillon on a leash), Margaret, John, and Vic (with Kona on a leash), welcomed Elliott to our group. We set off on the Woodland Trail and met Jackie (visiting from California) on the switchbacks. She decided to join us, we welcomed her, and continued our ascent. Suddenly two unleashed dogs appeared on the trail. After much excitement, but no blood loss, the errant dogs were leashed by their owner, and we continued on our way to the southernmost trailhead. Our return trip was uneventful, and our 70-minute hike was enjoyed by all.

May 12 was drizzly, as predicted, so Mary suggested we try Dick's Fork road to the "foxglove meadow" and other side roads. She was joined by John, Margaret, Heather, Karinne, Laurie, Jim, Kristi, Emily, Katherine, Phillip, Ana, Meadow and Willow. The grass along the roads was very wet and we all got pretty wet. There were many forms of small wildlife along the roads, salamanders, snails, slugs, centipedes and beetles which provided entertainment for Meadow and Willow. Once again we found no foxgloves in the meadow, and someone had removed the door to the pumphouse. Someone also had erected a small memorial to "My daddy" at the gate leading to the foxglove road. We also explored a couple of other side roads, including this one, where Katherine, Meadow and Willow posed in the "cave" of a giant stump. We found an abandoned boat, as well.

On a balmy Thursday, May 9, Beth, Laurie and John hiked the Woodland Trail, now ablaze with wildflowers. The many violets, rhododendrons, salal and salmonberries in bloom, have been joined by thimbleberry and a few blackberry blossoms. We filled a large bag with trash during our very pleasant 80-minute hike. Welcome back Laurie!

Monday, May 6, was sunny and mild, as compared to the last two hot days on the coast. Curtis, Lily, John, Margaret, Vic and his dog Kona, Kristi, Katherine, Emily, Phillip, Simon, Meadow, Jayne, Gillian, Mary, Vern and Jim decided to visit Legion Road, "which must be dry by now." It pretty much was dry but there were still a few "lakes" there, along with many wild rhodies and other flowers, little blue butterflies, and side roads which needed to be explored. John had a new pedometer, and it agreed fairly well with Jim's. As usual we split into two groups. Everyone talked about the phenomenal change in weather which took place last night on the coast, as the temperature dropped from 80 to 55 degrees in 20 minutes, much to the relief of all area residents. It was a nice leisurely walk of 4.6 to 5 miles (the two pedometer readings).

On a beautifully sunny and calm Thursday May 2, John celebrated the return of Maggie and Bill by showing them the changes in the Woodland Trail since they were last here. On our ascent Bill bravely retrieved one of the new plant identifiers which had been thrown down a steep hill. We admired a wild rhododendron in full bloom, saw again our wild violets, and now many emerging salmonberry blossoms. No snakes this time! Our hike of 70 minutes was a delightful reunion.

On Monday, April 29, Lily suggested we return to the "fish ladder," as the salamanders should be plentiful along the road. It had rained during the night, but was dry as Curtis, Mary, Vern, Beth, Kristi, Katherine, Phillip, Emily, Meadow, Jayne, John, Margaret, Gillian and Jim joined for the hike. That road always amazes, as we see things we had missed each time we return. Today at times the sun illuminated the many shades of green on the trees, the moss, and lit up the little creek as well. We did see some salamanders, and all of our young members enjoyed cavorting around the streams at the ladder. Our hike was a little shorter than normal at 3.37 miles, but very enjoyable.

On April 25, a sunny but breezy Thursday, Heather introduced her childhood friend Bev to Mary, Margaret and John. Since Bev had not seen the newer stretches of the Woodland Trail, we chose to share it with her. Enhanced by budding rhododendrons, blossoming wild violets, trilliums, and many skunk cabbage blooms, the trail was a pleasure to hike. While descending the switchbacks we awakened a large basking garter snake, and a few yards further down, a smaller red-spotted cousin, their presence a sure sign that Spring is here! It was a delightful hike of just under an hour.

April 22nd greeted us with the most wonderful weather that we have seen in months, for our 200th Monday hike. Bright sun, deep blue sea with white surf, and no wind. Vern, Gillian, Jayne, Joyce (welcome back), John, Margaret, Heather, Karinne, Mary, Jim, Kristi, Emily, Phillip, Katherine and Meadow met at Keady Wayside and motored to the parking spot south of Washburn campground. Off we went on the Heceta Head lighthouse trail, which is quite a roller-coaster, and today was quite muddy, as well. The scenery was magnificent, and as we came out behind Heceta light, the new paint on the lighthouse was just brilliant. At the lighthouse we took a lot of group photos, then split into two groups, some returning on the trail and others via the road. When everyone gathered at the parking place, some went down the Washburn trail and observed a moment of silence in honor of lives lost and people injured in Boston last week. Everyone stopped at Outtagas Pizza in Yachats for a luncheon celebration. The Pizza there is good, and very filling. All in all it was a wonderful day.

I just noticed they didn't paint one side of the roof!

On the bright and beautiful sunny morning of Thursday April 18, Joyce was welcomed back by Heather, Beth, Laurie and John. Since Joyce had not experienced the nearly completed Woodland Trail, we introduced her to its many wonders. As we entered the forest we found that someone had neatly labeled many of the trees, shrubs, flowers and mosses. Thank you! The skunk cabbages were in full bloom, and we found several flowering trilliums and wild pansies. The trails crew have done major repair on the switchbacks which needed work. Well done! We showed Joyce the six upper trailheads, and then descended back to Keady Wayside, a hike of 70 minutes, enjoyed by all.

Monday, April 15 arrived as predicted with showers. Let's see if I can remember all of us--Kristi, Emily, Phillip, Katherine, Meadow, Willow, Terry, Laurie, Karinne, Mary, Gillian, Beth, Margaret, Heather, Lily, Curtis, John and Jim decided to return to Gerdemann Gardens, as a couple of the ladies had not visited there. The large leafed rhodies had new leaves, and the lavender trilliums abounded. At the "top" of Gerdemann Gardens we took the new Fisterra trail through the forest, which has been improved with stairs and chips and is very scenic. From there we crossed highway 101 and hiked the 804 trail north to the beach, then returned to the galleries and our parking spot. Memory failure resulted in an inaccurate pedometer reading, but a guess is between 3.5 and 4 miles. Photos from the Fisterra trail.

Next week will bring our TWO HUNDREDTH Monday hike. The plan is to meet at Keady Wayside as usual, and drive to the trail from highway 101 in to Heceta Head lighthouse. Park on the east side of 101 in the wide spot. Bring some water and light snacks, as this will be a longer day than normal as it is 22 miles (the drive, not the hike!) to the lighthouse. When the hike is complete, we will drive back to Yachats and celebrate this milestone event with pizza and beer at Outagas Pizza. OK?

On Thursday morning April 11, the sunshine and a minus tide were perfect conditions for a beach walk. Betsy, Laurie, Terry, Beth, Mary and John chose to head along the Alsea Bay beach, under the bridge, and east toward the Port Docks. With many clam and ghost shrimp burrows underfoot, we strode along beside the rapidly eroding beachfront properties. We passed a few crabbers at the Port Docks, and proceeded up Mill Street, pausing briefly at the old Waldport Gaol, and at Katie's Pacific Sourdough Bakery. We then headed up the west side of Lint Slough and into the forest, showing our new hikers the route of our proposed new Lint Slough Trail. We returned via the ball fields, a hike of 70 minutes.

April 8 was another "iffy" weather morning. John, Margaret, Beth, Heather, Mary, Betsy (welcome back), Jayne, Laurie, Terry, Jim, Kristi, Emily, Phillip, Katherine, Ana, Meadow and Willow headed for Yachats and the lower part of Amanda's trail. The ocean waves were spectacular at Yachats. There were a couple of muddy spots on the trail, in the usual places, but that did not deter us. When we reached the bridge, the younger members went down into the stream to play. We noted that Amanda's statue has acquired a green coat, made of the same moss growing on the trees. We think this has been a banner year for moss growing. On the way back to town we encountered Joanne Kittel on the way to her home and she welcomed all of us to the trail. The pedometer said 4.1 miles, but those 8,677 steps were pretty short on that trail. As usual, we did not get rained upon. Photos of Amanda and her new coat, and Kristi, Emily, Meadow, Willow, Katherine and Phillip headed for the stream as the rest of us watched from the bridge.

In a steady drizzle on Thursday April 4, the Woodland Trail welcomed Beth, Heather, Laurie, and Terry, as well as Margaret and John, and their former fellow mountain runners from Tucson, Sherry and Dave. Well sheltered from the elements, our visitors thoroughly enjoyed the trail, commenting on the beautiful forest, and the wonderful feel of the wood chip surface. We found some of the signs painted over (which we will repair), but very little trash on the trail. Our hike of 70minutes was enjoyed by all. Photo by Sherry.

April Fools Day, the day after Easter was foggy. No fools here, as Mary, Beth, Laurie, Curtis and Jim were joined by John, Margaret, their son Carl, his wife Lori and son Peter from Tucson. Then a big white van pulled into Keady Wayside, signaling the return of Kristi and her entire family, husband J.D., Emily, Philip, Katherine, Simon, Ana, Kristin, Meadow and Willow. We twenty headed for Cape Perpetua and Gwynn Creek trail. Parking at Captain Cook's bridge, we backtracked under highway 101 and headed south on the Pacific Coast trail, to the Gwynn Creek trail. The tide was quite low and the fog persisted, but the trail was, as always a beautiful venue for a hike. Triliums were plentiful, signalling spring. We logged 5.45 miles. Happy birthday, George, we missed you. Welcome back to all the rest of you, and we enjoyed your company very much. Here is a group photo, thanks to Curtis.

On a sunny and windless Thursday March 28, Beth, Laurie, Jayne, Terry and John took to the beach instead of doing our usual Thursday Woodland Trail jaunt. We headed south from Keady Wayside, with a rainbow arched over the Bayshore Spit. A family of six proudly showed us the clams that they had just harvested, as well as a huge centipede which they had found. After admiring pigeon guillemots and surf scoters, and chatting with inquisitive harbor seals, we headed south and then inland along the Bunker Creek Trail, and across the highway to the Forest Service Ranger Station Loop Trail. We emerged on Norwood Drive, where we separated, with two of us returning to Keady Wayside and the bothers returning to their homes. Our hiking time was 70 minutes.

Monday, March 25 was cold and windy, so we wanted to get into the forest out of the wind. Laurie's friend Terry was a newcomer to the group, along with Laurie, Gillian, Mary, Beth, John, Margaret, Curtis, Lily, Jayne and Jim who headed for our reservoir hike off Blodgett Road. Terry was impressed with the beauty of this hike, as we all are, no matter how many times we repeat it. Curtis, challenged by Lily, accompanied her on a descent to the waterfall, once again. At one point, John mentioned that we were progressing so slowly that a slug had caught up to him and climbed up his leg. He said it was "sluggish." Enough of our humor. We did our usual trip to Big Creek and then went west on the trail which leads to the buildings where we park. We could not find a good way to get around the fence, so backtracked to the trail entrance. It was short, 3.6 miles, but fun, as always. John found a great site for a group photo, below.

And here are two of Curt's, very artistic, of the falls

On Thursday March 21, with a cold breeze blowing, Heather, Laurie, Terry and John escaped the elements by hiking into the old growth forest of the Woodland Trail. We were disappointed to find one of our trail signs partially destroyed, and the switchback bench marked with white paint. Our Waldport Walkers Trails Crew will replace the sign and clean the bench. We ended our hike in the cold breeze of Keady Wayside, a hike of just over an hour.

I can't help but editorialize here. Lowlife members of our society have surfaced again. Considering all of the work done by many to provide recreation for many, the few have decided to start destroying the progress. I am upset. On the other hand, in five weeks we will accomplish the milestone of 200 Monday hikes. Mary has suggested that we do something special, such as the Heceta Head trail, then all gather at Outagas Pizza in Yachats for a healthful lunch of pizza and beer. Sounds good to me, what do you all think? Projecting into the future, that would take place on Monday, April 22nd. If you wish to participate, clear your day planners/calendars/etc.

Addendum: On Saturday, March 23, John removed the paint stain from the bench. Photo of him after the job was done. Thanks, John.

March 18, the day after St. Patrick's day, was cold but sunny. The forecast for the rest of the week is wet. We 11, Lily, Curtis, Mary, Margaret, John, Beth, Laurie, Heather, Jayne, Gillian and Jim, headed for the Carson cemetery, five miles to the east on the Yachats River road. We hiked mostly uphill to "the top" where we found a sign designating the road as 5421. This was new territory to most of us and was very scenic. Mary, Gillian, Curtis and our absent members Bill and Maggie had been here before. A few "grottos" were noted along the way. Once we returned to the cars we examined the cemetery which is quite unique, not level at all. This was our 195th hike, folks, so start planning the party for number 200. Here we are at the cemetery.

On a cloudy and breezy Thursday March 14, Terry, new to our hiking group, joined Jayne, Laurie, Beth, Ken and John on the Woodland Trail. Terry and Ken thoroughly enjoyed their first exposure to the trail, with comments about the beautiful old growth trees and nurse stumps along the way. We showed our newcomers all six of the trailheads near Crestline Drive. On the way back, Beth, Laurie and Terry branched off to Dolores Drive, while Jayne, Ken and John returned along the main trail for a total hike of just over an hour.

March 11 was very foggy, but 11 hikers met at Keady Wayside. Curt's wife Ruth joined us again along with Laurie, who participated on Thursday, so with two new folks we decided to revisit the "fish ladder" road. Jayne, Mary, Margaret, John, Curt, Heather, Beth, George and Jim made up the rest of the group. As usual, the fish ladder road was very scenic and Dick's Fork creek was running strongly. When we reached road's end, Ruth discovered that she had lost her glasses, and on the return trip, Jayne found them on the road. We picked up discarded cans as usual. Returning to the cars, George's pedometer had recorded 4.2 miles, Curt's read 5.2, and Jim's 5.37 and 11,395 steps. Heather reported that the driving mileage to the parking spot was 5.8. We need to check it from the other entrance. We think Ruth and Laurie enjoyed their exposure to this beautiful venue. Here are a couple of (as usual) candid photos.

On the sunny and windless morning of Thursday March 7, newcomers Laurie, Barb, and Virgil (with Rockey on a leash), joined Jayne, Heather, Beth, Sharon (with Sara-Bella) and John on the Woodland Trail. The dogs were introduced and quickly became friends. The newcomers to the trail marveled at it's beauty, and we all huffed and puffed up it's steepest hills. There has been more trail re-surfacing, and the trail is in excellent condition. On the way back, Beth, Heather, Sharon and Lourie chose a different route back via Dolores Drive, while the rest of us returned along the main trail. An enjoyable 70-minute hike on a beautiful day.

A nice day on March 4 brought 11 of us together at Keady Wayside, and we remembered that last week we decided that THIS week we would revisit Gwynn Creek Trail at Cape Perpetua. Jim2 and Jane joined us once again, and accompanied by Mary, Heather, Margaret, Jayne, Karinne, Gillian, John, George and Jim, we headed for our destination. Parking at the Cook's Chasm bridge, we traversed the trail to the tunnel under 101 and headed south on the Oregon Coast Trail. When we reached Gwynn Creek we headed up the hill. There were a few places where it was muddier than we have seen in the past, but the sun was out and it was a glorious day. The spouting horn was very quiet, probably due to the outgoing tide. When we returned to our parking place, I showed 5.33 miles, and George showed 4.2. John said we had hiked for 100 minutes, so I'm sticking with 5+. On the drive back through Yachats we investigated the site of the "airborne car" from last Saturday. Here are two photos from Jim's new Nikon Coolpix S3300. I will add another when I get it processed.

Isn't this a gorgeous trail, typical of where we enjoy Monday mornings?

In a steady drizzle on Thursday, February 28, Margaret and Norm (visiting from Tucson) joined Beth, Margaret and John on the Woodland Trail. Well sheltered from the wind and rain, we showed our admiring visitors our nearly completed trail. We encountered Andrew and his trails crew spreading wood chips on a few soggy patches of trail. We thanked the crew for their fine work. Andrew informed us that by tomorrow they plan to complete the repair work. Our hour-long hike ended as the rain started pelting down. Good timing!

Following an early morning hailstorm, on February 25, Curtis, Lily, John, Margaret, Beth, Mary and Jim decided to get under the protection of the forest trees, so we went up Dick's Fork Road to "the intersection." From there we hiked some of the shorter trails, including the one that goes to a dead end west of the fish ladder road. At the end we found two deer carcasses, one picked to the bones by predators, and the other seemingly untouched. The amount of trash that we find is inversely proportional to the bags we brought to collect it. We picked up two full bags of cans, mostly those power drinks, some of which were labeled 8% alcohol. The sun even came out for a time, and when we completed just over 4 miles, it started sprinkling. Later in the day, I bought a new, little digital camera for use on our hikes, so beware everyone.

The drizzle on on the morning of Thursday, February 21, sent Heather, Sharon, Sara-Bella (straining at her leash), and John, scurrying for the shelter of the Woodland Trail. We found and repaired many bicycle skid marks, picked up a small amount of litter, and vetted potential sites for additional trail-side benches, soon to be donated. We returned to the parking lot in just over an hour to notice, for the first time, that it was still raining!

February 18 dawned cold and drizzly. Undaunted, Mary, Heather, Carolyn, Margaret, Curtis, John and Jim were joined by Kristi, Katherine, Emily and Willow. We decided to get under the umbrella of trees, and set off for our fun short reservoir hike off Blodgett Road, which was, as usual a beautiful sojourn. As we came to the waterfall viewing sight, we lost sight of Katherine, Emily and Curtis, only to discover that the three of them had made it down the "elk slide" to get a closer view of the falls. Here is a photo from Curtis.

It appeared to us older folk that their trip back up the slide was quite arduous. We ambled on to the reservoir, by now split into three groups. Willow was just full of energy, running and hopping along the trail. We found a single skunk cabbage bloom along the road, very pretty. We saw numerous elk hoofprints as well. Big Creek was its usual winter spectacular self. When we returned to the starting point we elected to go down to the creek, where the girls had fun throwing stones into the water, and Katherine and Emily managed to cross the creek by sliding across a fallen tree. Oh to be so young once again. John, Jim, Kristi and Willow explored a trail off to each side of the main one, and I believe it was at one time a logging railroad bed. When we got back to the cars we said farewell to Kristi and family, as they will be leaving us for a month or so. Jim's pedometer registered 3.72 miles, but some folks logged more distance.

On a clear and windless Thursday February 14, Margaret and and John enjoyed a Valentine's Day hike on the Woodland Trail. With the sun breaking through the forest canopy, we were impressed with the brightness of the green moss on the branches of the snags. We found that the trails crew have re-chipped the worn upper section of the switchbacks, and that the muddy trail patches have all been fixed with new drainage. We thoroughly enjoyed our hour-long hike on the beautiful sun-dappled trail.

February 11 was overcast but dry, and found John, Margaret, George, Belladonna, Karinne, Curtis, Carolyn, Heather, Mary and Jim at Keady Wayside. John had heard of the completion of the new Fisterra Trail in Yachats, so we motored to the galleries near Gerdemann Gardens, hiked up Diversity Street to the traihead, and started up the trail. The Angell Job Corps had cut in the trail, on Forest Service land, and the Yachats Trail group chipped it. It is nicely done, but needs some more chips in places. There are many interesting trees and nurse stumps along the trail, and it comes out just east of Gerdemann Gardens. We continued along the trails there and encountered some very muddy spots. Once reaching the road to the reservoir, we noticed some new decking had been constructed in the "Private Property" location. Rather than going up to the reservoir, we split into two groups, with George, Mary and Jim heading for Starr Creek road and 101 to return to the cars, while everyone else reversed course on the muddy trails and returned through Gerdemann, as some of the ladies had not experienced the Gardens before. Jim's pedometer said 3.6 miles, and George's said 2.4 for the same hike. The photos are from the Fisterra Trail.

On Thursday, February 7, in a light drizzle, Heather, Jayne and John once again sought shelter from the elements on the Woodland Trail. Just above the switchbacks we met up with Andrew, the Trail Crew Leader, and two of his workers who were preparing to drain a muddy patch of trail. We alerted them to some repair needed on the switchbacks. While ascending the trail we encountered several other crew members spreading wood chips and improving drainage. We thanked them for the fine work they were doing. By the end of the day Andrew and his crew plan to have completed the trail reparation. Our delightful one-hour hike ended in sunshine!

February 4th, a nice morning, found new hiker Belladonna joining Heather, Carolyn, Jayne, Mary, Gillian, Margaret, Karinne, John and Jim at Keady Wayside. Margaret had arrived by Rick Hill's trike. Vic joined us for a while but elected to skip the hike and tend to his newly acquired pet dog. We opted for the 804 trail, since there was no need to get sheltered from rain. Jim got to ride in Jayne's brand new Hyundai Elantra, nice car. We started at the state park and found the 804 trail to be very popular today with lots of hikers and dogs evident. We managed to get pretty well spread out until we reached Starr Creek, which no one attempted to navigate across. We saw a "surfing" seagull on the creek. The surf was as always, spectacular. We hiked 4.23 miles. Most hikers went to the Chinese restaurant for lunch.

Here are pictures of the surfing gull and a shell pile, thanks to Gillian

On a sunny and windless Thursday January 31, Heather, Jayne, Margaret, Vic and John gathered at Keady Wayside. Knowing that the trails crew had been working on the Woodland Trail on Wednesday, we decided to go and see what they had accomplished. We found that two new benches had been installed overlooking the stream near the Skate Park. Also, several steep and muddy stretches of trail have been graveled, and new drainage ditches have been installed. On our return hike we detoured to show Jayne and Vic Waldport's historic cemetery. Our hike of just over an hour was enjoyed by all. On this beautiful day, with a low tide, Margaret elected to extend her hike by returning home along the beach.

Our gathering on Monday, January 28 took place in the rain. We wasted no time using three cars to get out of the wet and headed for Cape Perpetua. Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Jayne, Karinne, Bill, John, Curtis and Jim parked at the Cook's Chasm bridge and backtracked to the Pacific Coast trail, then on to the Gwynn Creek trail. The lighting conditions in the forest on this overcast day were very interesting, bringing out the varied shades of green in the ferns, trees, and moss, rivaling Ireland. The views of the ocean as it only acts in winter were impressive, and Gwynn Creek was more like Gwynn River today. After 45 minutes we reversed course, partly caused by a tree of about three feet in diameter which had broken off and taken part of the trail with it. John described it as the biggest snag he had ever seen, and it did not have any branches. Mary remarked what a great way to start the week, and I decided to use a much overused word today, "awesome," to describe our experience. It was topped off with a great show by the spouting horn beyond Cook's bridge.

Here is a photo of the downed tree, courtesy of Karinne

On a sunny but cold Thursday, January 25, Heather, Jayne, Vic and John ascended the Woodland Trail. We showed Jane the Red River Dam, and Vic told us about the dam he built, which collapsed and nearly drowned his neighbor's cows! Near the Skate Park we found a fellow hiker cleaning up party debris in the forest. Some of the trail's soggy patches had been drained, but there is more work to be done. On our return trip we encountered another hiker walking her dog. A very pleasant hike of just over an hour.

On Monday, January 21st, Martin Luther King day and President Obama's inauguration day, it was once again very cold, just above freezing. That made it quite surprising to see a large group of us assemble at Keady Wayside. We welcomed Jayne back to the group after her months of travel. Vic, Heather, Mary, John, Margaret, Don, Carolyn, Bill, Maggie, George, Gillian and Jim were about to depart for Beaver Creek natural area when Kristi arrived with Emily, Katherine, Philip, Ana, Meadow and Willow. All 20 of us set off for Beaver Creek. This time the entire group attacked the "big hill" up to Snaggy Point, from which the view was beautiful. It had gotten warm enough that just about everyone shed their heavy jackets and we lingered at the picnic table for quite a while. John, Jim, Philip and Ana set off down Snaggy Point Loop and everyone followed. We turned right at one of the Cougar Ridge trails, to South Fork and we were nearly back to Beaver Creek Loop when Vic said that Kristi and the two little ones were quite a ways behind us. Phillip and Jim backtracked and took another Cougar Ridge trail to Antler Overlook. John came up yet another trail and we eventually joined up and returned to the Loop. Quite an adventure. Bill's altimeter read 330 feet at the top, and Jim's pedometer read 5.04 miles.

Two photos by Gillian, Fairway Meadow covered with frost, and the group at Snaggy Point. Thanks, Gillian.

On a sunny but cold, and increasingly windy Thursday, January 17, Margaret, Vic and John ascended the Woodland Trail. We deviated from the main trail to show Vic, new to Waldport, the remnants of our historic Red River Dam. We explored some of the original forest trails, now overgrown and eroded, and then returned to Keady Wayside in just under an hour.

On a very cold January 14th, new hiker Karinne joined Bill, Maggie, John, Margaret, Curtis, Vic, Heather, Sharon and Sara-Bella, Carolyn, Mary and Jim and we decided to return to the upper levels of Blodgett Road, as we had not hiked there for a very long time (records show about a year and a half). Three cars drove the approximate 3 1/2 miles up Blodgett to the quarry, which as usual was littered with shell casings. We headed east up the road beyond the quarry and it was so cold that the puddles were icy and quite interesting, resembling topographic maps with lines throughout them. Bill had a new toy which he brought along that contained many functions, one of which was an altimeter. It read about 950 feet above sea level at the quarry. We turned around at about 2.4 miles up the road, in the snow, where Bill reported the elevation at 1285 feet. When we returned to the quarry we had accumulated 4.76 miles in 94 minutes. Lots of tech data today. Fun.

On Thursday, January 10, we gathered at Keady Wayside with light hail falling, and the super tides almost splashing our cars an hour before high tide! Letting discretion be the better part of valor, we moved our cars to the safety of the Woodland Trailhead. Heather, Carolyn, Vic, John, and Sharon with Sara-Bella (on her leash) ascended the trail, and discovered that the final stretch near the playground had been completed. The trails crew have also started draining the few wet patches of the upper trail. By the end of our hour-long hike the sun had emerged and the hail was melting.

On Monday, January 7, eight hikers met at Keady Wayside.  The heavy rain had let up as Bill, John, Curtis, Heather, Sharon, Maggie, Margaret and Mary set off for the Cummins Creek trail.  Needless to say, we had it  all to ourselves.  The forest was calm and misty.  It was foggy but not as fogged in as was the coast.   A beautiful and peaceful 95 minutes. Thanks to Mary for the report.

On a cloudy, windy and cold Thursday, January 3, Heather, Carolyn, Don, Vic and John found sanctuary from the elements on the Woodland Trail. Cleared of bottles and cans and other trash by Margaret and John as a New Year's Day project, the trail was pristine. The tree branch blocking the southernmost trail entrance had been removed less than a day after it was reported to the City. Thank you City Crew!

On the last day of 2012, New Year's Eve, December 31, new hiker Vic joined Heather, Betsy, Karen, Mary, Margaret, John and Jim and we headed for Legion Road. Some of us were worried about the status of the lakes and those fears proved to be well founded, as we hit a lake about a mile from our starting point, John and Ann Smith's driveway. Heather and Mary managed to ford it and the rest of us opted not to try, so the two had to ford it again. On the way back, John once again demonstrated his well deserved "Do Not Follow Me" pin by leading us through some wild woodlands. That actually came out on a velvety soft trail and we discovered the remnants of someone's camp. We then investigated the old wagon road and managed to get all the way to Bayview Road. It turned out to be another good hike, and our final one for 2012, bringing our total Monday count to 184. Happy New Year!

Once again there was no rain on Thursday, December 27. John was joined by Mary, Betsy, new hiker Karen, Jim and his grandson Austin and daughter Laura for a very nice complete traverse of the Woodland trail. Austin took a group photo which appears below.

On Christmas Eve, John, Margaret, Mary, Betsy, Chris and Jim were joined by Jim's daughter Laura and grandchildren Austin and Taylor. We returned to the "fish ladder" and the sun actually came out during part of our hike. Dick's Fork creek was running strongly and the hike was beautiful as always. Our visitors enjoyed the nature. Photos will follow later. Merry Christmas to everyone.

As predicted by the TV weather guessers, a violent storm blew all night and things did not look much better on Monday, December 17th. That did not deter those of us of questionable sanity, John, Margaret, Heather, Mary and Jim from meeting at Keady Wayside. Mary had not been able to sleep Sunday night, and elected to return home. Jim was wishy-washy but decided to accompany the others to hike the Woodland Trail. This turned out to be an excellent choice, as we were sheltered by the trees from a few bursts of rain and hail. We ended up walking every single branch of the trail for 3.5 miles. We did quite a bit of policing, and discovered more which needs to be done, but will require rope to get access to the debris. We discovered a green bike abandoned in the sand pile at the top of the Pacific View trail end. When returning from the top to the bottom, we paused at the base of the switchbacks to think of how we ever managed to scale that hill before the trail was built. The trail--it is so well done and so much more than what we expected. A treasure to Waldport. Back in the parking lot, we found a menu (pricey) for the re-opened Outtagas Pizza in Yachats. We all said goodbye, and would you believe, once again, as we got into our cars the wind picked up considerably and a huge hail dump took place, and we once again remained dry.

A sunny and chilly December 13 proved unlucky for John since he found no company for the Thursday hike. He chose to explore the possibility of linking a new Lint Slough Trail with Township 13 and Crestline Drive. The first section of trail along the slough, cleared by our trails crew, is still very open. While exploring a possible link from the top, he came across fresh bear tracks, and then fresh deer tracks, but no easy connection with the slough trail. Total hiking time, one hour.

The morning of Monday, December 10th started with a clear sky, followed by an instant fog bank, instant clearing, and best of all, no wind. Seven of us met at Keady to discuss which trails to hike. The original choice was Cummins Ridge, followed by the 804. We headed south in two cars, and stopped partway because the folks in the lead car had decided to switch to the 804, as the tide was high, surf was up and it was a nice day which did not require trees for umbrellas in the forest. Sorry, Gillian. Gillian, our photographer, joined Mary, Maggie, Margaret, John, Bill and Jim and provided the two photos below, outside of the Adobe walking, and posed a little further on. The surf was wild, and we spotted sea lions rafting. We had parked at the abandoned Landmark restaurant and were glad to see that our vehicles had not been towed when we returned after 5.2 miles.

Thursday December 7 brought us cold weather and showers, interspersed with sunshine and beautiful rainbows. Mary and John hiked the Woodland Trail, followed for a short distance by a large, and fortunately friendly, black dog. We found that the City Maintenance crew had removed the large tree blocking one of the upper trail entrances, just a day after it was reported to them. Well done! Having been asked by the City where two additional benches should be placed, we explored the southern section of trail and found a few select view-sheds to recommend. We returned to sunny Keady Wayside after 55 minutes of hiking and good conversation.

Another rainy morning did not deter John, Margaret, Bill, Maggie, Mary and Jim from heading to our "fish ladder" location. As usual, it stopped raining as we started out on our hike. How, once again, did we arrive at December? The 3rd, actually, and because of the rain, Dick's Fork Creek resembled a small river and was roaring. The little waterfalls became big waterfalls, quite spectacular. When we reached the fish ladder, the water was really flowing through there, overflowing the small dam. On the way back to the cars, we explored a trail alongside one of the Dick's Fork tributaries and discovered a perfect nurse stump/tree. We also explored the wide trail not far from the gate, and it extends much further than we remembered. There is another animal trail which begs to be explored on our next trip up there. That entire experience is just a beautiful venue. There were several photo ops and no cameras. 4.57 miles.

A windy and drizzly November 29 did not deter Heather and John as they sought sanctuary on the Woodland Trail, now our regular venue for Thursday hikes. As we entered the forest the rain stopped, and the sun broke through the forest canopy. We hiked to the south end of the trail and back, a delightful and brisk one-hour hike.

Wow, sun was shining on Monday, November 26th. John, Margaret, Heather, Mary, George, Gillian, Bill, Maggie and Jim met at Keady Wayside and Margaret suggested Eckman Lake Road to "the berm" discovered many hikes in the past. Bill and John drove and it took about 1/2 hour to get to our parking place, somewhat short of the berm, as there was a tree down across the road. Earlier we had to stop to clear some big branches enough to drive through. Off we went on Road 5360 which was very steep to the berm. Once there, we started out on Road 5361, which Jim and Margaret both thought would end at the "tee" with roads left and right from there. There were many deep trenches and berms cut across this road, and many trees down, resulting in the bestowed name of "obstacle course" for the road. We split into two groups, four returning to Road 5360 and beyond, five pressed on. We never found the tee, but did come across the clear cut logging site, which we remembered being at the end of the left road from the tee. There have been some serious winds up there, causing the fallen trees. 5.1 miles. Our group photo, courtesy of Gillian, taken at the tree where we parked. Thanks, Gillian.

'Twas a dark and stormy night followed by a wild and windy Monday, November 19, when three Waldport Walkers met at Keady Wayside. At the risk of being deemed foolish at best or crazy at worst, John, Margaret and Mary, clad in full rain gear, headed for our Woodland Trail.  We cleared the trail of storm debris as we climbed along.  No big trees were down;  however, there were plenty of branches to keep us busy.  One branch fell directly on Mary's head and then careened onto Margaret: a bit of a surprise but no harm done. We clocked a mere 75 minutes but enjoyed our stormy  and soggy walk in the woods. (Submitted by Mary)

On a sunny Thursday, November 16, Mary, Margaret and John hiked the Woodland Trail. We marveled at the soft sponginess of the unfinished final spur of the trail. On the way back the rope banisters at the switchbacks were very reassuring on the wet trail. Our 65-minute hike culminated with us lending a stranded homeless father and two sons our cell phone to reach their family for rescue. Since the Woodland Trail is well sheltered from the elements, and is very accessible, it will be the main venue for our Thursday hikes during the windy and rainy winter months

On November 12, five Waldport Walkers met at Keady Wayside for a Veterans' Day hike in the rain.  The weather limited our options  and Jim opted out for the gym.  John, Maggie, Margaret and Mary decided to stay close to home and hike our Woodland Trail. The bay was full with strong waves hitting the rocks so Maggie smartly decided to move her Smart Car inland while the others took their chances. The creek (ambitiously called the Red River)  was running strong complete with a couple of waterfalls.  We noted that the trail has reached a probable 99.5%  completion stage.  When we returned to the bay, the tide was in with waves coming over the sea wall.  Total hiking time was 75 minutes. (Jim did 3.5 miles on an indoor treadmill). Wimp. Thanks to Mary for the report.

GOOD NEWS from John: On a drizzly Thursday November 9, lone hiker John decided to hike the Woodland Trail to see whether there had been progress on the unfinished southern branch of the trail. To his delight he found the trails crew energetically leveling the unfinished section in preparation for wood-chip surfacing. Andrew, the crew supervisor, informed him that they were going to develop yet another spur, linking the new section of trail to the playground on Crestline Drive. We are very near to completion of our beautiful forest trail.

Monday, November 5 was foggy in Waldport. When we gathered at Keady Wayside, Diana, George, Gillian stated that they had not hiked the Gwynn Creek trail which we did last week. It did not take much discussion for Heather, Susan, Mary, Maggie, John and Jim to agree to a revisit, so we drove to Neptune Beach, parked and started up Gwynn Creek again. The creek was running strong again, and lo, the sun came out upon us once again, creating wonderful rays through the old growth forest and illumating various sights as we climbed up the trail. We actually went beyond the waterfall where we stopped last week, and above it the trail was remeniscent to me of the upper part of Amanda's trail. It was all spectacular. Here are three photos taken by Gillian, of Gwynn Creek as we crossed the bridge at the bottom, and two of the great sun rays in the forest. 4.93 miles of more sensory overload. It was interesting that as we passed the point where many trees had fallen across the creek, George made the same comment as Margaret had last week, "pickup sticks."

George sent this group photo at the bridge at the foot of the trail

And two more from George, just great photos

A windy and drizzly Thursday, November 1, drove Carolyn, Heather, Margaret and John to the sanctuary of the Woodland Trail. Protected from the elements we were able to enjoy our hike, while assessing how the trail had withstood the impact of a foot of rain in the past three weeks. The trail is in excellent condition, and has now been extended south to the electrical substation on the corner of Range Drive and Crestline Road. At the end of our hike we emerged from the forest to find that the wind had not abated. A delightful hike of just over an hour.

The rain continues. Six foul weather hikers gathered on Monday, October 29th. Mary, Maggie, Margaret, Heather, John and Jim owe kudos (I guess today it's props) to Margaret for suggesting Gwynn Creek trail at Cape Perpetua, to hike under the shelter of the trees. We had not visited here in a long time. We parked at Neptune Beach and crossed Highway 101. The trail down low was very wet, but as we started up Gwynn Creek, it was remarkably dry. What a beautiful vista, misty forest, huge old growth trees, some with ferns growing up on the trunks (how does that happen?) We crossed nine tributary streams feeding Gwynn Creek, and a couple that were too wimpy to include in the total. Upon reaching the ninth, there was a pretty waterfall and partial trail washout, so we turned around there. Mary and Margaret had crossed the washout. There were many places where trees had fallen across the creek, as Margaret described them: Pickup sticks. This hike was a total sensory overload, and Murphy's 65th Law prevailed, "When the scenery is very beautiful, chances are no one will have a camera." True today. 4.82 miles. Then on the way home we stopped at the spouting horn at Captain Cook's Chasm, and it was really spouting. Interestingly, we encountered very little rain.

On a sunny but windy Thursday, October 25, Carolyn, Mary and John chose to get away from the wind. We parked at the Forest Service Ranger Station, and hiked the trail through the forest east and north of the property, emerging at Norwood Heights. We meandered through the neighborhood, and returned to our cars via a different path through the forest. Mary chose to hike back to Keady Wayside.

On Monday, October 22, seven hikers met at Keady Wayside. The heavy rain had stopped, but an ominous sky sent us seeking shelter under the canopy of trees on Dick's Fork Road. Jim2 and Jane, who had recently completed the Portland Marathon, joined Curtis, John, Margaret, Maggie and Mary for an enjoyable but relatively short walk in the woods. ( No six miles today.)  Except for one downpour accompanied by a sudden drop in the temperature we were mostly dry.  We turned back at the reservoir.  The sun shone briefly through a patch of blue sky as we drove home.

Thanks to Mary for the report. The missing Jim was enjoying this

On a sunny Thursday, October 18, with a light easterly breeze and a low tide, Beth, Carolyn, Margaret, Mary and John decided to hike the beach. We walked along the bay passing two Great Blue Herons, and then eight crabbing and fishing boats in the Alsea River Jaws. We then headed south, turning back at Governor Patterson State Park. On our way back we found a "No Wake, 5 mph" buoy stranded near the high tide mark. We returned to Keady Wayside, a hike of just over an hour.

The rainy season had started on Monday, October 15. The foul weather group, John, Margaret, Maggie, Mary, Susan, Heather, and Jim decided to go to Cape Perpetua and hike the Cummins Creek trail. One driver nearly missed the turnoff and thanks to a courteous following vehicle, may have avoided an accident. We didn't experience much rain at all, and the forest is just beautiful. A couple of young ladies were biking on the trail and we met them during their downhill run. We turned around at the usual spot where a big tree had formerly blocked the trail, but the rangers have corrected that situation. We were all taken with the beauty of the forest, especially after a gentle rain. We examined a few animal trails on our descent, and just had to go down the trail to the Creek. Mary sustained an injury climbing over a log across that trail, being cut by a sneaky sharp branch. Cummins Creek was running hard and a lot of trees were down near the Creek. We logged 6.3 miles in two hours of hiking, perhaps a record for the group.

On Thursday October 11, with a light fog and the sun occasionally breaking through, Carolyn, Heather, Maggie, Mary and John chose to explore the west edge of Lint Slough. Starting from Township 13, we tried to find a connection to the trail entering the Isaac Walton League property to the north. We reached the slough, backtracked, worked our way north on forest roads, and were stymied by a steep ravine, so steep that one would have to roll down. The ladies unanimously elected John to test the roll, he declined, and we ascended the hill, back to our cars. We never did find a connector trail.

Still no rain in sight. Columbus Day, October 8 (I thought it was the 12th) found Bill, John and Jim outnumbered 3 to 1 by Maggie, Margaret, Mary, Beth, Sue, Carolyn, Gillian, Sharron and Diana. Keeping in mind that it is hunting season, the twelve of us elected to return to the Beaver Creek Natural Area. The goal was to completely traverse the Beaver Creek Loop trail, which on the map is listed at 2.1 miles. We decided to go "up" first, so hiked up the mountain from the base of the wye to "the top," and since Sue had not been to Snaggy Point we detoured to there, where Sharron took the attached photo. Then we backtracked to the Beaver Creek loop and walked down through the forest where we encountered an owl sitting in a tree, and later found little orange frogs plus a very tiny green one. When we passed the apple tree and came to the bridge, we traversed part of the marsh trail. We met a couple coming from the north side and chatted for a while. On the way back to the cars we checked out the entry to the West Beaver view trail, and then drove to the visitor center to get some more maps. 4.89 miles, a very nice hike.

PS: I was WAY off on the elevation of Snaggy Point, it's 320 feet, not 800.

Our sunny streak continued on Thursday, October 4 when Clairmonde (from Corvallis), joined Carolyn, Heather, Mary, Mary, and John on another hunter-avoiding hike. We drove to Eckman Lake, and hiked up the west side of the lake, admiring the geese and ducks, and then on up the steep hill past the green water reservoir. The views over the valleys were spectacular, and on returning to the lake, we saw what looked like two turtles basking between two ducks on a floating log. We returned to our cars, pausing for a few blackberries, a hike of just under an hour.

This "rainless" streak is getting scary, as is the fact that it was October 1. Hunting season has started, so after meeting at Keady, twelve of us decided to walk the beach north of the Bayshore Beach Club access. Ladies, Diana, Sharron, Gillian, Heather, Carolyn, Mary, Mary2, Margaret and Maggie severely outnumbered Bill, John and Jim. The beach was great, sunny, easy to walk on, nice surf, and actually new territory to most of us. We walked on past the Driftwood Beach state park, and most of us turned around to head back. Gillian, Diana, Mary and Sharron continued to "The End," which must be something like "The Top." We were buzzed by a low flying UltraLite craft. That looks like too much fun. Those of us who cut short logged 5.55 miles, so the four ladies must have accumulated much more.

Gillian sent this photo of Diana, Mary, Sharron and herself at "The End." Thanks, Gillian.

On a sunny Thursday September 27, Beth (welcome back!), Carolyn, Margaret, Mary, Mary, and John, welcomed Peggy (from Paris) to our hiking group. Since two of the group had not been on Waldport's Woodland Trail, we took them on the tour. They were delighted to find such a beautiful forest trail so close to home. The trail has now been completed all the way to Crestline Park, and a side trail to the south is being developed. We returned to Keady Wayside, a hike of just over an hour.

Another nice Monday dawned on September 24. New hiker Mary2 joined six other ladies, Mary, Maggie, Margaret, Gillian, Linda and Barb, along with the equal number of men, Bill, Vern, Finn, John, Curtis (welcome back), George and Jim. After our usual discussion, we decided to head for Yachats and park at the end of Perch Street, at the beach end of the 804 trail, hike south on the 804 to the Green Salmon restaurant, then up a hilly hike inspected earlier by Margaret and Mary. This turned out to be another very nice hike despite the hill on the new-to-us trail. The surf along the 804 was as wild as we have seen it, encouraging none of us to try surfing. Barb got a group photo at the State Park in Yachats which will be posted here when I receive it. Received 11/11/12

On Thursday, September 20 we gathered at Keady Wayside in a heavy mist. Carolyn and John decided to introduce Evelyn and Mary (visiting from Idaho) to the Gerdeman Gardens trail. We explored the forest trail south of the gardens, and then proceeded to the waterline trail, turning back long before reaching the reservoir. For once the trail was completely dry. We saw many mushrooms, one snake and a chipmunk on our hike of just under an hour.

Prior to our meeting at Keady on September 17, George had visited the Ranger headquarters at the Beaver Creek natural area and learned that the trail through the marsh was dry enough to navigate. Fifteen of us headed for Beaver Creek, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Evelyn, Linda2, Gillian, Kristi, Katherine, Emily, Carolyn, George, Bill, Vern, John and Jim. We parked at the HQ on North Beaver Creek road, and did manage to get across the marsh trail, though in a few places it was quite muddy. Once into the main park, former boy scout and "Do Not Follow" Jim suggested hiking to South Fork trail then West Beaver View trail and return. This great navigator managed to take North Fork trail, and could not figure out why we didn't run into West Beaver. After hiking uphill for a long way, we encountered an intersection with Snaggy Point trail. A quick look at the map revealed the mistaken North vs. South. I wish the rangers would put bigger trail signs up for old eyes. No, no excuses. So we split up at this point, with John, Evelyn and Linda2 backtracking, while the rest of us continued to Snaggy Point where the view is always worth the climb. After resting for a few, we returned via Snaggy Point trail (new to us!) and back across the marsh for 4.6 miles. It was fun.

Photo of Beaver Creek lily pads by George

Lucky Thursday September 13th bought a bright and sunny hiking day for Carolyn, Don, Evelyn, Heather, Joyce, and John. We drove to Waldport Heights, parked near the beautiful viewscape east over the Alsea River, and then hiked south through the forest along the waterline right-of-way to the water storage tank. After enjoying the views, we returned along the same route, encountering an irate shouting lady and some large unidentifiable mushrooms on our way back, a hike of just under an hour.

Though it rained overnight, Monday, September 10 was dry. Two new hikers, Evelyn and Linda, joined Joyce, Heather, Diana, Gillian, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Bill, George, John and Jim, and we headed for Legion Road. The lakes had dried up nicely along Legion, and the blackberries were in great abundance, slowing us down considerably as we picked and ate them. At about 2 miles along the road, we encountered two trucks, and some guys were trimming brush along the side of an adjoining road. They had obviously cut a lot along Legion, as well. When we returned to the cars, Mary and Joyce were nowhere to be found. They must have stopped to pick more berries. 5.5 miles covered today.

On Thursday, September 6, Mary, Tom and John arrived at Keady Wayside, and in view of the low turnout, decided to go their separate ways. John had promised the Seal Rock Trails group that he would explore the route of the old wagon trail north of Alsea Bay. He searched in vain for the old wagon route from Bayview Drive, but found many winding trails through the forest. He then tried to follow the wagon route south from Legion Road, but found no new route to Alsea Bay. His total hiking time was one hour.

On Labor Day, September 3rd, new hikers Tom and Eric (Joyce's husband) joined Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Gillian, Heather, Joyce, Tina, Vern, Bill, John, George and Jim and we headed for the State Park in Yachats to hike the 804 trail. Some of us welcomed the nice, level trail. On this holiday weekend, we had never seen so many people out walking, jogging, beachcombing and just enjoying the great weather. When we reached the beach at the north end, we "meandered" among the sea urchins and starfish, and witnessed pelicans flying inches off the sea and some whales spouting. Lots of mussels had washed up on the beach and Tina enjoyed the nature walk as much as the rest of us. We walked 5.00 miles.

George sent these: Meandering and gabbing.

Thursday, August 30th dawned bright and sunny. Barb, Finn, John and Margaret introduced Marlene and Ted, visitors from Cincinnati, Ohio, to Waldport's Woodland Trail, which they thoroughly enjoyed. We were accompanied by our little feral cat friend for part of the way, and found three abandoned green bikes. We returned to Keady Wayside, a hike of just over an hour.

Monday, August 27 was another sunny day. Barb, Bill, Diana, Finn, George, Georgia, Gillian, Heather, Jim, John, Joyce, Maggie, Mary, Sharon, Tina and Vern drove to the South Lincoln County Water facility off Blodgett Road and hiked in to the reservoir. That rainforest is really stunning when the sun is shining. When we returned to the parking place we split into two groups, one going up Blodgett Road and the other down to the Big Creek crossing. As Gillian referred to our hike, it was a woodland meander. The SLC facility was once known as "The Cooler" when it belonged to the Forest Service. One of the buildings there was kept at 50-55 degrees, and seedlings from Washington were brought there and left in that "cooler" for about three weeks, where they became aclimatized (is that a word?) and their survival rate once planted in local forests was increased from 65 to 95 percent.

Here is a group photo by George, who is the only one missing

On a sunny Thursday, August 23, Betsy, Carolyn, and John decided to assess the progress at the top of Waldport's Woodland Trail. We reached the switchbacks as the City crew completed replacing the stolen rope banisters, now secured with steel clamps. The final section of the trail near Crestline Park has been leveled ready for wood chip surfacing. We returned to Keady Wayside, a brisk hike of just under an hour.

On a sunny and windless August 20th, our gathering of 23 hikers decided to venture to Cook's Chasm near Cape Perpetua and hike from there. Ana, Barbara, Betsy, Bill, Carolyn, Chris, Diana, Emily, Finn, George, Gillian, Heather, John, Joyce, Kristi, Maggie, Margaret, Mary, Meadow, Philip, Tina, Vern and Willow hiked down toward the ocean, pausing at the Spouting Horn (low tide, not spouting!), on past the tide pools, and then inland, through the tunnel under the highway, and then south on the Oregon Coast Trail where the mushrooms are just emerging. We crossed Gwynne Creek, veered right over the highway, and on to the beach at Neptune State Park. After some of us had splashed in the ocean, clambered over the rocks, and found a washed up sea star, we regrouped and returned to Cook's Chasm. Our actual hiking time was 90 minutes.

Here is a photo by Gillian of the August 20th hike, a nice sunny day.

On a foggy and windy Thursday August 16th, Mary and John chose to introduce Finn and new Waldport Walker Georgia, to our well-sheltered Woodland Trail. Our enjoyment of the delightful forest atmosphere was temporarily spoiled by the discovery that someone had stolen two long sections of the switchback banister rope. When nearing the top of the trail we found that the trails crew are extending the wood-chipped trail even further. Good work! We returned to Keady Wayside, reaching it in just under one hour.

August 13 featured fog and cool air. 18 hikers met at Keady Wayside and decided to return to Fern Ridge cemetery in Seal Rock. We all drove to George's house, and he, Kristi, Katherine, Emily, Philip, Willow, sporting her first ponytail, Joyce and her daughter Tina (welcome aboard), Vern, Finn, Barb, John, Margaret, Mary, Gillian, Betsy, Heather and Jim set off for the cemetery. We spent quite a bit of time exploring the various historic gravesites, picked up some .45 calibre trash, then ventured down another "No Trespass" trail to the intersection of two power lines. We came to a very steep hill and decided that was far enough, so backtracked to George's. At this point we became the Waldport Walkers and social club, raiding George's beautiful Dahlias. Thank you, George. One of these days we will find that elusive "connection" to Legion Road. We did get some ideas for the future, such as Marsh Road. 4.89 miles.

On a sunny but windy Thursday August 9th, Mary Betsy, Beth and John chose to hike from Governor Patterson State Park. They traversed the old railroad right-of-way to the Waldport Forest Service Ranger Station, and then onto the forest trail east of the station. They encountered signs of bear and two spots where garbage had been dumped on the trail. When they reached the T-intersection in the trail, John chose to go south to Waziata and back via the beach. The remaining trio walked through Norwood Heights into town, and proceeded along the sea wall to the beach, and back to Patterson Park. Their jaunt was just over one hour long.

Another nice day greeted us on August 6th. 17 hikers made the trip to the usual parking area south of Eckman Lake. As a group we started up Forest Service Road 5360 until we reached "Gillian's Fork," where we split into two groups. Finn (welcome back), John, Curtis, Jim, Don, Gillian, Carolyn, Sue and Betsy ventured up Gillian's Fork to the very end. Evidence of many animals, particularly bears were on the trail. The other group, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Barbara (welcome back), Beth, Vern, Bill and George continued up the road. When the Gillian's Fork group returned to road, we were unsure if the other group had reversed course, so gave out a collective yell which went unanswered, so we turned around and headed for the cars. When we reached them, the other group had not returned, so a few of us hiked short distances on the other roads until the second group returned. Two large ODOT trucks were observed carrying yard debris down one of the roads. This we will need to investigate. Jim's pedometer registered 5.01 miles.

On sunny Thursday August 2nd, the low tide and gentle breeze invited a beach walk. Beth, Betsy, Carolyn, Chris, Don, Grace, Jeremy, John and Mary proceeded north along the bay beach, under the Alsea Bay Bridge, and on to the Port of Alsea docks. We then hiked up Mill Street, paused to inspect the old Waldport Gaol, and then on to explore the west side of Lint Slough. The potential trail route along the slough needs clearing. We returned to Keady Wayside, a hike of just over an hour. Beth sent the following photo of Grace and Jeremy at the old Waldport Jail.

July 30th was again overcast. A very large group collected at Keady Wayside, and in the first attempt to satisfy everyone and split into two groups, John led a group on Woodland Trail. Report: The group who chose to explore the newly completed upper section of the Woodland Corridor Trail were George, Verne, Susan, with Margaret and John and their visiting family, Mike, Christy, Jeremy and Grace. They found that the rope banister on the switchbacks had been installed, and that the old and new upper sections of the trail had received their wood chip surface. The five newcomers to the trail were very impressed. Here are two photos of that group courtesy of George.

The second group consisted of Bill, Maggie, Don, Carolyn, Beth, Mary, Gillian, Curtis and Jim, and they headed for the visitor center at Cape Perpetua. Having avoided the Cook's Ridge/Discovery Loop Trails for a few years, up the hill we went. It turned out to be beautiful once the sun came out. We encountered 13 other hikers on those trails as tourist season is in full swing. Photos by Gillian. Our group photo is at a very large stump which has obviously been used as a rock climbing site.

On Thursday July 26th, the heavy mist in the air did not deter our Waldport Walkers. Newcomers Alice and Judy joined Beth, Betsy, Carolyn, Joyce, Mary, Don and John on an exploration of the logged forest south of Range Drive and west of the golf course. Six of our nine hikers were not familiar with the trails in this area, and were delighted to find another nearby place to hike. Our meandering forest hike lasted just under an hour.

On a sunny Monday, July 23, new hikers Maryann and Ellison joined 22 more of us at Keady Wayside, where the usual "where shall we go?" discussion took place. Folks, we need to change the way we select venues. The final decision favored the Beaver Creek State Park natural area, starting on the north side at the Visitor Center, hoping to make it across the marsh trail. Our group contained Don, Carolyn, Chris, Betsy, Bill, Maggie, Joyce, Heather, Kristi, Emily, Katherine, Meadow, Josh, Rebecca, Mary, Sharron, Diana, George, Vern, John, Curtis and Jim. Our seven cars arrived at the visitor center and off we went. After about 1/2 mile, we encountered water which required waders, so turned back, drove to the "other side" and set off on the Beaver Creek Loop trail, having lost Ellison, Maryann and George. Now down to 21 hikers, we again split into two groups. Kristi, Emily, Josh, Rebecca, Vern and Jim went up the mountain right at the wye, and everyone else went forth on the loop trail. The view from Snaggy Point was fantastic on this clear day. I am not sure where the group of 15 went, but we mountain climbers returned to the loop via the Snaggy Point Loop, Cougar Ridge, and South Fork trails, for 5.4 miles. The trails had been cleared recently, EXCEPT for the ones we chose to come down upon, and as usual the grass was wet and tall. The young folks picked and ate tons of berries. We had fun. Suggestions in the auto trip back home included "why don't we let one person pick the venue each week," and "we don't all have to go to the same trail, when our group is this large." What do you think?

**My wife Sharon had a brilliant idea. Everyone bring a suggestion on a slip of paper. We put them all in a bag, shake it up and draw one. That will be the hike of the day.**

On a sunny Thursday July 19th, Joyce, Betsy, Heather, Mary and Carolyn and Don were introduced to Margaret and John's visiting family and friend, Jeannette, Leeza, Nika, Matt, and Madison. The lucky 13 of us hiked our Woodland Trail, seven of us for the first time! We found our trail builders working to complete the upper section of the trail, where they are putting in a new branch trail to Crestline Park. They expect to complete the the entire trail in August.

Photo courtesy of John and Madison, photographer who is not in the pic.

Monday, July 16 was misty. New hikers Chris, Justin, Josh and Rebecca joined returnees Jim2 and Jane, Kristi, Katherine, Emily, Meadow, Don, Betsy, Carolyn, Mary, Sharron, Diana, Joyce, George, Vern, John and Jim. We decided after a long discussion to walk from Keady Wayside across the bridge, and I thought the plan was to hike Bayview Drive to the place where the Thursday hikers found a possible connection to Legion Road. However, when we got across the bridge, our leaders had taken the path down to the beach on the north side of the river, so we followed them and hiked to the jaws of the river where there was a big flock of Turkey Buzzards, obviously waiting for something or maybe someone to die. There were also quite a few Harbor Seals which entertained the younger members of the group. "Beach Access" is not marked on the beach side of the houses, so we probably trespassed by crossing back to the streets. We then took the "high road" back to the bridge, which led us through the KOA campgrounds. 5.5 miles, 21 hikers, another record.

On a misty Thursday July 12th, Beth, Betsy, Carolyn, Mary, Don and John decided to determine whether it is possible to hike from the SE corner on Legion Road south to Bayview Drive on public right of way. We found our way to several houses hidden in the forest, but did not reach Bayview Drive. We returned to near where we had parked, and were then introduced by Betsy to her friends John and Anne, whose beautiful home overlooks Alsea Bay. John, very familiar with the area around their home, gave us a map showing the route of the old wagon road, which was where we had just hiked. It turned out that we had turned around just a few hundred yards from Bayview drive. This was a short but very rewarding hike.

Monday, July 9 was overcast. That did not stop our group from setting a new record with 20 hikers. New hiker Joyce joined returnee Diana, Susan, Sharron, Carolyn, Mary, Margaret, Heather, Gillian, Kristi, Katherine, Emily, Ana, Willow, Phillip, Don, Vern, George, John and Jim for a trip to Amanda's Trail, starting at the parking lot on Yachats Ocean Road and going to the bridge at Amanda's statue. We paused for a long time at the bridge and it seemed everyone took photos. Mine are not posed, so I may have missed some of you and am sorry. It was cool and a little breezy, but a good hike right at our four mile marker.

On Thursday, July 5th, a sunny windless beach beckoned Mary, Margaret, Betsy and John. We hiked south along the beach pausing to admire the huge gaper clams retrieved by energetic clammers. Expecting a messy beach, we virtuously carried plastic bags for a cleanup. To our delight we found very little to retrieve. Our hike to Patterson Creek and back covered 2.8 miles in one hour.

On an overcast but dry day, July 2nd, 15 of us gathered at Keady Wayside. New hiker Justin and Sharron did not accompany new hiker Susan, Betsy, Beth, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Gillian, Heather, Curtis, Vern (returned), John, George and Jim to Cape Perpetua and the Cummins Creek trail. It appeared that a few trees had fallen since our last journey on Cummins, but the rangers had cut them up. One was enormous and appeared to have burned at the base, then cut down. John had obtained a new pedometer at a garage sale, and we compared mileage. John showed 4.6 or so and Jim had 5.0. Both showed over 10,000 steps. Heather had ridden in the cab of steam locomotive 25 at the Oregon Coast Scenic Railroad over the weekend, and enjoyed the trip. Cummins Creek is a great trail. Susan is obviously a hiker, and she and Betsy were in the lead most of the day, along with Beth.

Here is a photo by George, and thank you George.

On Thursday, June 28th, Beth, Maggie, Mary, Heather, and John took Heather's friend Betsy on a tour of our Woodland Trail. Away from the wind some complained about the heat (nearly 60*F!). We saw many bicycle skid marks, but the trail was remarkably free of litter. Our hike of just under an hour ended as the clouds rolled in.

More "Junuary" rain greeted us on Monday, June 25th. Gillian cruised by and waved at us, with news that the Woodland Trail was a mess. Of course we had to investigate. Mary, Beth, Heather, John, Margaret, Kristi, Katherine, Emily and Jim gathered up trash bags and headed up the Woodland Trail, which wasn't really too littered. We came out at the skate park, which was a different story, really trashed. We backtracked on the Woodland to Park Street, and from there went into Township 13 and on to Joe Vandehey's property trails. There is evidently a very big dog that romps around in the sand at the end of Bird Avenue, judging from pawprints. Jim demonstrated sliding skills on a steep part of the trail, on his backside. We hiked down to Lint Slough and through a literal garden of foxgloves, many of them white. We returned to Township 13 and split into two groups, one heading down Ball Blvd. and up through Pat Ball's property, and the other group returned to the Woodland Trail and the Red River access road. We joined up at the bottom of the Woodland Trail. 5.5 miles.

Photo of John surrounded by foxgloves today, thank you Beth

On a sunny and windy Thursday, June 21st, Mary and John introduced Heather and Beth to the hillside forest just west of Lint Slough, which owner Joe Vandehey had invited us to explore. Heather and Beth were new to this forest, and were impressed with the views of the slough, the existing logging roads, and the potential for trail development. After pausing at the edge of the slough, we each found a walking stick, and ascended the steep slope back to Township 13.

Monday, June 18th, looked a little iffy, and we did get rained on at our meeting place. Before launching off to hike, we listened to Joe Vandehey describe his plans for development of his land between Township 13 and Lint Slough. He had a number of informative maps and basically gave us permission to hike the old logging roads on his land. He has plans to build a gazebo along the slough where kayakers can land and hike in a park which he also proposes. He left the maps with us. We counted 17 heads and per Margaret's suggestion, drove up Dick's Fork road to the old foxglove meadow turnoff. Kristi, Katherine, Emily, Philip (welcome Philip), Ana and Willow joined Don, Carolyn, John, Margaret, Mary, Maggie, Beth, Heather, George and Jim and we headed east on Dick's Fork to a side road blocked by a gate. As we started around the gate, our now well known maintenance man from the South Lincoln Water District arrived and opened the gate for us. We went quite a distance along this road then followed the power line access road further than we ever had before, to a dead end, then returned on yet another road which brought us out at the SLWD facility with the large storage tank. New territory! Good choice, Margaret. When we returned to the cars, we counted heads again, and uh-oh, only 16. We started down the road and stopped to canvass the other drivers when we determined that the missing person was Sharron. We found that she had not joined us after all, choosing to hike across the bridge by herself.

On a sunny Thursday, June 14th, Paula, Kristi, Emily, Katherine and Simon, joined Margaret and John in showing their visiting friends, Marge and Norm from Tucson, the beautiful Woodland Trail. There was lively discussion of the forest flora, Emily collected ripe salmonberries for all to taste, and we were shown the poisonous twinberries to be avoided! Our hour-long hike ended with us watching the harbor seals disporting on the sunny sand flats.

In addition, George sent this photoshopped item of all 19 hikers from Monday.

Thanks, George, and thanks to Gillian for the first Monday photo.

A very nice weather morning on June 11 brought out a record number of hikers to our group. New arrivals Lois, Don and Carolyn joined Curt, Ruth, Lily, George, Gillian, John, Margaret, Mary, Beth, Sharron, Heather, Kristi, Katherine, Emily, Willow and Jim, nineteen of us, with the ladies outnumbering the men 14 to five. Senitila stopped by to introduce us to her nephew from Tonga, but they did not join the hikers. Kristi's family had not yet experienced Gerdemann Gardens, so five vehicles transported all of us to the parking area behind the galleries. We were greeted by the owners of the gardens, who were expecting a tour group. We tried to convince them that we were that group, but did not succeed. Beside having a record number of hikers, we also had, again, the record in age difference of 80 years between Willow and George. The muddy area was still muddy, and quite a few of us decided that the hill up to the reservoir had become much steeper than our last trip there. Willow had a great time discovering bugs, snakes, and other miracles of nature for a three year old, including Indian Rhubarb growing in the little creek. The footbridge across Starr Creek had been damaged, handrails knocked off and the bridge down in the creek-vandalism? Several photos were taken of the group posing in front of the "Absolutely No Admittance" sign, which we know pertains to vehicles, not hikers. In fact, two workers from the South Lincoln Water District arrived at the reservoir by truck while we were taking a breather there and confirmed that we were welcome.

On Thursday, June 7th a steady drizzle and high winds reduced the Walkers to one participant. John decided to explore the upper Woodland Trail to assess progress on the final stretch. It still needs work before wood chips can be applied. He then hiked the forest trails west and south of Crestline Park (which the Walkers Trails Crew previously cleared) to asses their condition They need some grooming, and one section is submerged. He then proceeded to explore the south end of Governor Patterson State Park, a good place to be out of the wind!

On drizzly June 4 (June? Already?) the gathering at Keady welcomed Sharron back to the group. She, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Beth, Gillian, Senitila, John, Curtis, Bill and Jim headed across the bridge, down to the beach and over to Bayshore, where we ascended and descended a sand mountain for access to the beach on the west side. That beach is always pleasant and easy on which to walk. The weather looked quite threatening but we were only drizzled upon. John is attending a meeting tomorrow during which "front desk" folks dealing with local area tourists will be briefed on local trails. We will soon be attempting to develop some for the Waldport area, so John and Jim stopped in the vistitor center to get some "base" maps. The ranger there reported that a small boat had been found at Patterson Park, but no people were around. On the return leg from Bayshore we ended up in three different groups, but eventually all returned to the starting point. 5.68 miles.

On sunny Thursday, May 31st, Kristi introduced to our hiking group two more of her children, Ana and Kristin, who together with Willow, Katherine, Paula, Beth, Mary and John ascended the Woodland Trail. Near the top we discovered the trails crew cutting the final swathe of trail through to the skate park. After doing a thorough cleanup of the mess in the park, we virtuously descended back to Keady Wayside.

Monday, May 28, Memorial (or Decoration) Day was like a reunion for our hiking group, as Bill, Maggie, Beth, Curtis and Lily returned to the group. Senitila joined us for the first time, and John, Margaret, George, Gillian, Mary and Jim completed the group. We returned to the "fish ladder" once again, and it was as beautiful as ever. We all did a lot of talking, catching up with each other's travels and adventures. We managed to accomplish our usual 4 miles. John shared information with us concerning activities at Cape Perpetua to celebrate National Trails Day next Saturday. I tried to copy the poster here but it didn't take.

Photo by George, and thanks George.

On Thursday, May 24th, with both low wind and low tide, Kristi, Emily, Katherine, Willow and John decided to explore the beach. We headed south and were soon surrounded by the squirts of gaper clams amongst the eel grass and sea lettuce. As we proceeded south our budding young biologists collected the shells of varnish clams, gaper clams, cockles, and when we reached the open beach, razor clams. They watched the pigeon guillemots entering their nest burrows in the sandstone cliff, and the harbor seals sunning themselves on the Bayshore Spit. Meadow and Kristi retrieved agates from a little cave on our way back, and we added some Dungeness crab casts to their collection of beach treasures. Our 50-minute nature walk was a delightful way to celebrate Kristi's birthday.

It was inevitable that the rains returned for our May 21 hike, as that was the day our roofer was to start work. Vern, Paula, John, Jim, Margaret, Kristi, Katherine, Emily and Meadow met at our usual gathering place. It may have been an omen when a seagull dropped an aerial bomb which landed between Paula and Vern, fortunately sparing both of them. We waited for our leader, Mary, and when she didn't arrive, we decided to stop and check on her enroute to Blodgett Road, where we were anxious to show our newer members the beautiful road to the South Lincoln Water District reservoir alongside Big Creek. Mary was not feeling well and did not accompany us. The salamanders, or "water dogs" were out and Meadow enjoyed watching them. The folks who had not seen this area before were impressed by the waterfall on Big Creek and the beauty of the road and forest. When we reached the reservoir the rain got heavier, and on the way back we dropped down to the lower trail and really got wet in the foliage. We hiked just under 3 miles.

At the reservoir, and a group photo along the road.

On a sunny Thursday, May 17, Kristi, Emily, Katherine, Meadow, Willow, Mary and John introduced our newest Waldport Walker, Paula, to our beautiful Woodland trail. Near the top end of the trail we were entertained by Emily, Katherine, Meadow, and Willow taking turns swinging over the little canyon on a rope. The older and wiser amongst us declined when invited to follow suit. We made our way through to the Skate Park via an unfinished stretch of trail. On our return through the forest Meadow showed us her hugging trees, and we found two other hikers enjoying our trail for the first time.

Another nice day, Monday, May 14, the day after Mothers Day, found John, Margaret, Gillian, Mary, George, Vern and Jim at Keady Wayside discussing possible hike sites. Kristi and Katherine arrived, bringing three-year-old Willow with them. The ten of us headed to the State Park at Beaver Creek, parked in our usual place, and found the lower gate open for the first time in our memory. Observations on the park: There are a lot of trees and branches down, and little evidence of any correction. Mowing might also be in order in places. Aside from those, the park was again a great place to hike, and as we promised Kristi and family, we did some mountain climbing to Snaggy Point. There were many indications that a herd of elk had been not far ahead of us. Wish we could have seen them. Willow proved to be a very capable hiker, putting us to shame on the steep upslopes, and she had fun hiding in the grass. We set a new age difference record, having Willow at 3 and George at 83, for a whopping 80 year difference. George took these photos, and thank you, George.

On Thursday, 10th of May, a sunny but breezy day, Kristi, Katherine, Simon, Meadow, Mary and John decided to explore the forest west of the golf course. We parked on Range Drive, and walked the old logging roads, showing our newest members a direct route through the forest from Crestline Drive to the beach at Governor Patterson State Park. Well sheltered from the wind, we thoroughly enjoyed our hike of just under an hour.

Monday, May 7 was actually sunny for our 150th hike. The ladies outnumbered the men, with Kristi, Katherine, new hiker Emily, Heather, Gillian, Margaret and Mary along with John, George, Vern and Jim, headed for Legion Road, or as I like to refer to it, the Minnesota Road, Land of 10,000 lakes. This was the best weather day we have had in a long time and we enjoyed the hike, running across Dave at his property, where he tried to get us to help move a gigantic boulder. We declined. The little salamanders that we often see proved to be excellent swimmers, and we even saw a few frogs in the lakes. We logged 5.28 miles, but Kristi, Katherine and Emily probably logged 9, walking to and from home besides the hike!

Gillian got a group photo of us, and George photoshopped it to get us all in. Thanks to both of you.

On Thursday, 3rd of May, Mary, Katherine, Kristi, Meadow, and John decided to explore the forest between Township 13 and Lint Slough. The idea was to determine whether access to a new Lint Slough Trail from Crestline Drive was feasible. We found a number of old logging roads which could become hiking trails with permission of the landowners. Our youngest hiker, Meadow (aged 5) managed the steep hills as well as all the adults, in spite of an age differential of 72 years, probably a record age span for our hikes! After the hike John explored the south end of the Woodland Trail to check on progress, and who should he find heading through the forest in the opposite direction but Meadow, Katherine and Kristi! They then guided him to an existing trail link to the Skate Park. Thank you, and thank you for becoming Waldport Walkers.

Another Sunday night of rain and continuing drizzle on Monday, April 30, the last day of April, did not deter Curtis, John, Margaret (welcome home to all), Vern, Mary, Kristi, Katherine, Heather and Jim from hiking. We wanted to show Kristi and Katherine one of our most scenic haunts, and decided upon the "Fish Ladder" venue, which we learned is not a fish ladder at all. Every time we revisit this place, we discover something new to us. While some of us lagged behind the main group of hikers, pointing out some of the sights to Kristi and Katherine, we observed bodies moving across the ravine from the small waterfall. It turned out to be our own group. The road actually turns 180 degrees there and we had not noticed that fact in the past. It was very wet, we saw many little salamanders, noticed a tree across the stream which appears to have exploded, and generally enjoyed the day. We logged a mere 3.39 miles.

Thursday, April 26. On sunny but very breezy Thursday, April 26th, Mary and John decided to get out of the wind and explore the newest developments near the top of the Woodland Trail. We drove to the skate park, entered the forest, and searched in vain for evidence of trail work in the area. We then proceeded to the Park Drive Trailhead and followed the trail southward, again finding little evidence of recent trail work. We were not in the right places! Mary decided to hike back to her car parked at Keady Wayside to add a mile or so to her hike.

Monday, April 23 dawned foggy, but dry. Gillian, Mary, Beth, Heather, Jayne, George and Jim met at Keady. We were hoping that Kristi and Katherine would join us so we could take them to one of our scenic favorites, but they did not arrive. We drove to Blodgett Road and went on up past our usual parking spot. We had not been up there for about a year or more and it was quite the uphill march. Lots of trees and branches had blown down, but the sun came out and the lighting in the forest was just spectacular. We turned around (just short of the quarry as a map search showed after the fact. It also showed that we had reached 700+ feet elevation.) and ended up with just over 4 miles. Since we had several plastic bags, we did not find nearly as much trash as usual. It was a lovely day and a fun hike.

April 19, from Mary. (I forgot to report that there was no hike on Thursday, April 12, due to inclement weather). On April 19, five Waldport Walkers gathered in the rain at Keady Wayside for their Thursday hike.  Joining Beth, Maggie, Bill and Mary was Maggie's friend Anne Marie from Boise. We opted to show our Idaho guest our Woodland Trail.  There the canopy of trees kept the wind and rain at bay.  A few workers were busy wood-chipping the final remnant of  a section of the trail leading to Crestline.  We skirted the large pile of chips and walked along Crestline till the wind chased us off to a side street. At the end of this road we came upon the trail that, when cleared, will join Lint Slough, an area John had  previously described  to us. Our hike lasted for 68 minutes and left us drenched and happy.

It was raining all night on April 16, but stopped long enough for us to get a hike accomplished. Heather, new hiker April, Mary, Kristi, Katherine, Vern and Jim set out to show Vern the new Woodland trail. Gillian, after bringing April to join us, opted for the indoor warmth of the Newport Rec Center. Vern was impressed with the trail, and the rest of us were also impressed that the work crew has now cut the trail all the way to the skate park. It still needs to be chipped. Once we reached the skate park and did some more cleanup-after-others, the ladies went down the path which leads west, and Vern decided not to crash through the low hanging branches there, so the guys went back on the streets while the ladies stayed on trails. The guys logged 3.3 miles and were only about five minutes ahead of the ladies returning to Keady.

On Monday, April 9, the day after Easter, Mary, Maggie, Beth, Heather, Bill, George, Curtis, Vern and Jim were joined by newcomers Kristi and Katherine. After discussions of what might be dry, we decided to go to George's house and hike back up to Fern Ridge cemetery, as it had been a long time since we visited there, August 2010. Amazingly, there was evidence of the tons of rain even along the road to Fern Ridge. We were nearly hit by a van on the way up and by and SUV on the way back. When we reached the cemetery the van was parked there and the occupants were dozing. We walked around the cemetery for a while and then headed back. The gate was open on a road which wyed off the one we were on, so we set off on that road. After about a half mile, we encountered a house out in the middle of nowhere and a friendly dog there. We turned around, not wishing to trespass, and a young woman came by on a horse, leading another horse. This woman verified that the road we were on is in fact the one that joins with Legion Road. We had discovered it at long last and will visit it again, driving up to the cemetery and starting there. On the way back to George's we picked up five bags of trash left behind by cretins. We hiked 4.68 miles.

Here is a photo of our group at Fern Ridge, courtesy of George, thank you George.

April 5th dawned sunny and almost windless. Jane, Maggie, Mary, Bill and John grabbed the opportunity to hike the beach. Due to high tide we could not hike around Yaquina John Point, and so we drove to Gov. Patterson Park and hiked south from there. We turned back at the end of Big Stump Beach, well past the ancient redwood stump reminder of the ancient forest which once stood there. We found a large red light bulb and a very big float, which raised questions about their origins, the Japanese tsunami maybe? Our 75-minute hike was enjoyed by all.

April 2 was once again rain-free, and we celebrated "the Return of Vern" by heading to the fish ladder road along Dick's Fork creek. The 10 of us, Beth, Bill, Maggie, Margaret, Mary, George, John, Gillian, Jim and Vern, enjoyed the beautiful scenery and the rushing water of Dick's Fork creek, which was verifying how much rain we have had recently. After traversing in and out to the fish ladder, we had not accumulated enough mileage, so continued along the road which connected to the Eckman Lake roads. Some workers from the South Lincoln Water district opened the "Road Closed" gate in the photo below. We had a conversation with them and they reported 4.2 inches of rain at the fish ladder over this past weekend. A lot of tree branches were down, partially blocking the roads, and we picked up a lot of beer cans tossed by uncaring individuals. The photos are again from Gillian's camera.

Our group, and the fish ladder with sun shining upon it.

Dick's Fork creek, and Vern at work. We covered 5.5 miles.

March the 29th: Another wet and windy Thursday led John to seek the shelter of the forest along the west bank of Lint Slough. I found several more abandoned logging roads with the potential of linking a future Lint Slough Trail with Crestline Drive and the Woodland Trail. I then went to the south end of the Woodland Trail to find the trails crew extending the trail toward the Skate Park. They indicated that they plan to link up with the forest trails cleared by our Waldport Walkers Trails Crew this month.

On March 26, the sun was uncharacteristically out along the beach. We elected to revisit our favorite scenic path off Blodgett Road, alongside Big Creek. Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Jayne, Gillian, Heather, Bill, George, John and Jim were all impressed by the number of blown down branches and trees along the path, the ferocity of (little) Big Creek, its rapids and waterfalls, and the sunlight in our forest haven. After hiking to the reservoir and back, we discovered a new (to us) old road or railroad bed which was covered with soft moss and a delight to walk on, and it led to the South Lincoln Water buildings, where one of the workers opened a gate for us to let us return to the cars. Not having accumulated enough mileage, we ventured up Blodgett Road for a ways and returned, totalling about 4.25 miles. Our avid photographer Gillian took many photos and here are a few samples:

March 22: Sunny weather greeted Maggie, Mary, Margaret, Bill and John who decided to explore the recent additions to the Woodland Trail. We found the steep branch leading to Pacific View Court was not quite completed. We then proceeded to beyond the Park Avenue trailhead, and found that the trail builders had cleared a lengthy new stretch of trail heading south. The objective of reaching the Skate Park seems to be within reach! We arrived back at Keady Wayside just before the raindrops!

On March 19, the weather gods once again favored us and John, Margaret, Mary, Maggie, Bill, Jayne, Jim and Gillian, along with a hitchhiker that Mary picked up, headed for Cape Perpetua. We parked at the Captain Cook bridge and walked the trails along the shoreline, the Captain Cook, Cape Cove and Trail of the Restless Waters. We were mesmerized by the beauty of the ocean, the surf, the Spouting Horn, Good Fortune Cove and the Devil's Churn. We encountered a few downed branches that had to be held such that we could pass by them. The first two photos, once again by Gillian, show the chivalrous acts of the men allowing Mary to pass by, and by Margaret, allowing John to pass by. Another photo of our group taking in the beauty of that ocean, which appears in the final photo.

March 15, the Ides of March: On a wet and windy March 15th the lone Thursday hiker, John, decided to do some investigative hiking. First I assessed the progress at the south end of the Woodland Trail and found that considerable new trail cutting had occurred during the pst week. Next was exploration of the possible routes through the forest from Township 13 down to Lint Slough. I found a network of old logging roads just waiting to become trails. Finally, a brief visit to the forest trails around and near the Skatepark suggested that they could be a future project for the Saturday Trails Crew.

March 12: Near gale force winds and rain did not deter Maggie, Mary, Margaret, Curtis and John as we set off to explore several in-town trail options. The proposed Bridgeview Trail paralleling Highway 101 was traversed from the north as far as the small canyon, and then from the south to the same canyon which will have to be bridged to complete this trail. We then ascended to Norwood Drive and soon branched off to the east along a public right of way. After some serious bush whacking and little street walking we reached the sewer line road which links with the Woodland Trail which we followed back to Kendall Ballfields and Keady Wayside. Our 80-minute hike revealed some interesting new in-town trail options.

Thursday, March 8, from Mary: Our Thursday March 8 hike found six hikers and one dog gathered in bright sunshine at Keady Wayside.  Because we were welcoming one new member Sylvia, Maggie, Bill, Margaret, Mary, Jan and dog Duffy wanted to show our newcomer the Woodland Trail.  Workers were busy constructing the latest leg of the trail leading to the top.  They informed  us it would be completed today.  Needless to say, we won't be long in checking out this latest sign of progress.  As promised our Thursday hike was finished in just under one hour.

It was raining continuously on Monday, March 5th, but that did not stop Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Curtis, Bill, John and Jim from venturing up Dick's Fork road. We walked into the "once was a foxglove" meadow and noted that the big sign about bad water had blown down. On the way in we saw many, many of the little salamanders that live up there, but on the way back out, did not see one. Odd. We investigated some of the side trails which beg another visit on a drier day. We also found, for some of our fair weather foxglove lover hikers, a new foxglove area. It seems that the amount of trash that we encounter is always inversely proportional to the number of trash bags we have brought along. Lots of trash today, shotgun shells, beer and soda cans, twelve packs. We got soaked in the 3 miles we hiked. John offered an explanation as to why this particular Monday was not dry--this year is a leap year. We should have hiked yesterday. The photo below is from last week on the beach, some serious flotsam.

Thursday, March 1. Mary, Maggie, Margaret, Beth and John decided to go to Lint Slough Trail which our trails crew started clearing last week. Beth was unfamiliar with the trail, and eager to see it. The rain stopped and the sun came out as we left Keady Wayside. John decided to go up the Woodland Trail to visit the trail builders who were extending the trail to Pacific Heights Lane. The Lint Slough group thoroughly enjoyed the trail, and look forward to seeing it progress further. They arrived back in just under an hour as the sun disappeared and the rain came down.

All weekend the weather forecasts spelled rain all week, except Monday. Of course, because it is always clear for the Waldport Walkers. Monday, February 27 was indeed rain-free, and Heather, John, Margaret, Curtis, Ruth2, Mary, George, Gillian, Jayne and Jim set out south on the beach, as it was barely above freezing and the theory was to stay in the sunlight. We turned inland at Patterson Park, and went up the dirt road short of the Forest Service to Kelsie Lane, then on to the sewer access road and Park Drive, where we encountered the Woodland Trail work party and City workers laying out a further extension of the Woodland Trail south of Park, hopefully to join the skate park some day. We then traversed the Woodland Trail to the lower entry, noting the stanchions placed on the switchbacks where rope will eventually be installed. This trail has exceeded our expectations. We had a variety of scenery today, beach, in town, the forest of the Woodland Trail. Gillian took the following photos, two of which illustrate the new benches placed by the city on the Woodland trail.

February 23--On this sunny and cool Thursday morning Jayne, Mary, Maggie, Bill, Heather, Clint, Margaret and John decided to explore the Woodland Trail. Two of our group had not experienced the trail, and the rest of us were curious about recent work on the trail. We found the trails crew installing the poles for the rope banister at the switchbacks. We proceeded to the Park Street trailhead and noted the new stretch of trail heading south through the forest. On our way back we paused and pondered the original purpose of the little dam on the Red River. We completed our hike in just under an hour.

It was drizzling on Monday, February 20, but we don't let that stop us, do we? John suggested Cummins Creek trail to get us under the umbrella of that beautiful forest that covers the Cape Perpetua trails. Bill, Maggie, Curtis, Gillian, Mary, John, Margaret, Heather and Jim were not disappointed by the choice. Lovely forest scenery and shelter from the weather. Several small trees had blown down across the trail, but did not hinder this group. In our discussions while hiking, the fact that John, Mary, Bill and Maggie had ventured out to help clear a new trail along Lint Slough last Saturday was brought up. Thanks to all of you for helping to prepare another future Waldport trail for use. We were so mesmerized by the scenery that we logged 5.11 miles and it was very enjoyable.

Thursday, February 16--On this cold and drizzly Thursday Beth, Margaret, and John explored the Woodland Trail. We found the new signage (hiking but no bikes or motorcycles), and the sturdy new benches in place. There were signs that a large animal had preceded us on the trail, and we observed that the new signage did not prohibit bears from using the trail. The hike was shorter than usual, but good fun in spite of the rain.

Another sunny Monday brought Bill, Maggie, Jayne, Mary, Curtis, George, John and Jim together on February 13. We once again decided to enjoy the sun and walk the beach north to the Port of Alsea. We found the sand to be quite soft and tough to walk in, so exited the beach once we reached the Port, and walked the streets to visit some of the historical sites in Waldport, such as the jail, which really surprised those members who were not previously aware of this quaint building. We continued on to the site of the former Lint Slough trail and slogged along the edge of the slough and a short distance up into the woods beyond the "rose bowl" as Jayne calls the sewage processing pond. This brought back memories of a trip up through here long ago when we split into three groups. The slough does present possibilities of another trail to replace the one lost when the dam was removed. It will take some effort to clear it. John introduced us to the Waldport magazine produced by the Chamber of Commerce and a flyer from the Rural Tourism Studio, both of which promote outdoor activity such as ours. We logged just under 4 miles.

Here is John's report from the Thursday hike on February 9: On this warm and windless morning Sharon, Heather, Jayne, Beth and John gathered at Keady Wayside for our Thursday hike. One of our group suggested that we cross the bridge and hike to the Soul Resort since some were not familiar with the beach access north of the bridge. On our way over and back we saw several Great Blue Herons, and a gathering of Harbor Seals on the sand flats west of the bridge. During our return hike, John asked for advice on cooking sweet potatoes. He was rewarded with four different versions, one of which he will test tonight to accompany the barbecued pork chops. Thank you fellow hikers!

New hikers Sharon and Heather joined the group of Beth (welcome back), Bill, Curtis, George, Gillian, Jayne (welcome back) Jim, John, Maggie, Margaret and Mary on another sunny Monday, February 6th. Once again, with new members, we elected to visit the fish ladder off the Eckman Lake roads. We drove all the way to the "intersection"--sorry about the confusion on that, it's my pet term for the junction of the roads we hike. It was pretty obvious that the wind had taken a toll on tree branches and some trees on Road 411/417 since our last visit. As usual, it was beautiful in the forest and Dick's Fork Creek was running well, making nice nature sounds to accompany us as we walked. Sharon and Heather enjoyed the view at the fish ladder, and Gillian and Beth photographed our group, below. When we returned to the cars, our different pedometers did not agree. We either hiked 3 miles or 3.5. At this point, Mary volunteered to drive a few of the hikers back to Keady Wayside. The rest of us backtracked to a side trail that just begged investigation. Soon after we started down it, I recognized it as the one which will now and forever be known as "Yvonne's Trail." The one time that our friend Yvonne accompanied us, we went down this trail, and when the day was over she questioned our sanity and vowed never to go with us again. Of all things we found a sewer line manhole cover on this trail which had obviously not been used in some time. We drove back to Keady on Road 1045, down to highway 101 and the red house. This road was better than the one we took inbound. Gillian's group photos appear below, along with an artistic one she took which just personifies the trails we hike. Thanks, Gillian.

John led another Thursday hike on February 2nd. Here is his report: On the beautiful sunny Thursday morning of February 2nd, our new Waldport Walker, Veryl, together with Beth, Maggie, Margaret, Bill, and John explored the Woodland Trail. After traversing the trail to the Park Street trailhead, we tried to find our way through the forest to Beth's home, but were prevented from doing so by some deep pools. On our return to the trail we encountered Heather and Sharon, two devoted users of the Woodland Trail. They may be joining us for future hikes.

After a Sunday of continuous rain, Monday, January 30 dawned dry for the Waldport Walkers, as usual. Jim2 and Jane were back in town and joined us, as did Curtis's wife Ruth. The alliterative group of John, Gillian, Jim, Jane, Jim2, George, Mary, Margaret, Ruth, and Curtis headed for our favorite rain forest road alongside Big Creek to show Ruth the scenery. We were surprised to learn that Jim2 and Jane had not been on this one before. It was beautiful as always, and "Big Crick" was really running, making the waterfall spectacular. After visiting the reservoir we hiked down to the creek and decided it could not be forded today. We investigated a new path which eventually returned to the road. Since the total mileage did not meet our usual target, we drove back into Waldport to revisit the Woodland trail, which weathered yesterday's rain quite well. We saw the signs that John had placed at the start and at the 1/4 and 1/2 mile posts. The crew was again working the trail, cutting up the downed tree into firewood at the switchbacks. Gillian was our photographer today, and the photos are hers. One at Big Crick where we came to the crossing obstacle, and the other on the Woodland trail near the top at Brentwood Drive.

John has reinstituted the second, Thursday hike, and here is his report from Thursday, January 26:

On this beautiful sunny morning Jan (plus Duffy"), Beth, Margaret and John went on the Thursday "in-town" hike to explore the Woodland Trail. We found that the trails crew had completely restored the washed out upper creek crossing, and had resurfaced the trail damaged by the downed trees. We thanked them for their fine work, and proceeded to the three trailheads which emerge near Crestline Drive. We all thoroughly enjoyed the forest settings with the sun breaking through, and returned to Keady Wayside, a hike of 3.1 miles, lasting 50 minutes.

Monday, January 23rd turned out to be a bright sunny day, so the usual suspects, Curtis, Bill, Maggie, John, Margaret, Jim, Gillian and Mary decided to get some vitamin D by staying out in the sun and crossing the Waldport bridge to check out the sand drifts on Bayshore which have been featured in national news broadcasts recently. We were able to beat the high tide and hike along the beach on the north side of the river, on the way over. We saw two boats which had apparently been washed down the river in the recent storms. We also noted a sign over on Bayshore which looked quite official and said "Tsunami Action--Run Like Hell." Don't know how long it has been there. We walked south on Oceania and have never seen the sand drift quite as bad as this one. It affected more homes to the north, and those two down near the south end were buried. At places we guessed the road had over a foot of sand on it. We returned via the road around the KOA site, as the beach was not navigable at high tide. The hike covered 4.57miles.

The following photos were taken by Curtis:

A buried house and the main road, Oceania

The sign

After returning to Keady Wayside, John, Margaret, Bill and Jim were joined by Jan and her pug puppy on an additional walk to measure distances on the Woodland trail, and place some markers for 1/4, 1/2 and 3/4 miles along that trail. We saw the new bridge at the north end trailhead and it is quite stout, very nice. We got as far as the foot of the switchbacks where we encountered the trail working crew and a tree that was dangerously hanging over the trail, partially down. John's wheel recorded 895 feet to that point, which is not even 1/4 mile. The little stream had washed out the trail on both sides of the culvert just before the switchbacks, so a bridge may be in order for that place. The recent storms have really tested the trail and revealed a few problem areas, but in general it came through quite nicely.

On Monday, January 16, there was snow on the ground in Waldport to help us celebrate Martin Luther King day. "Snowbirds" Curtis, Bill, John, Jim, Maggie-Margaret-Mary met at Keady Wayside and since no one wanted to drive anywhere in the snow, we opted to walk the beach. It was kind of surreal to see snow on the beach. A lot of driftwood has been deposited there as well. The first photo shows a structure someone had the ambition to build, and that is not white sand, it is snow. We walked south to just past the blue B&B house, and it did not look promising near Yachats, in fact we started to get snowed or rained on, so reversed course and returned north, as the second shot shows. It alternated from grey to sun to white, seemingly forever changing. We logged another 4.47 miles.

The second hike of 2012 is reported by Mary: On January 9, seven hikers, Curtis, Maggie, Bill, John, Margaret, Gillian and Mary met at Keady Wayside.  Our destination was the over-sized berm we recently encountered.  This barrier blocks the forest road to our peaceful meadow.Little did we know we would be scaling a total of 25 berms (Margaret counted them) all along the trail.  We did some off-trail exploring and Gillian took a bunch of pictures. This berm-blocked forest road is 5.5 miles from Highway 34 and 2.5 miles from our usual Fish Ladder parking spot. John is contemplating restarting  a mid-week hike, one that would be closer to home, shorter and generally less challenging. Jim, our webmaster, reminds us that with the new year, we have entered into our fourth calendar year of Waldport Walkers hiking. Gillian provided these and other photos:

Climbing over the many berms added to this road since our last trip. After some thought, the webmaster thinks that those berms were installed as speed bumps to slow down Mary and Gillian.

Your blogger received a report from daughter Laurie about a hike that she and several friends took on Sunday, down in LA from the Griffith Park Observatory to the Hollywood sign. They managed to take a few wrong turns, converting their 4 mile hike to 12. The photo is of granddaughter Taylor and her cousin Kylene at the sign.

For our first hike of New Year 2012, John and Margaret brought along their son Carl and daughter-in-law Lori, and Curtis brought his son Nathan. Mary, Maggie, Bill and Jim made it a total of ten hikers. With new hikers present, we decided to repeat another of our very scenic hikes to the fish ladder, along roads 1045 and 417. Dick's Fork Creek was running as strong as we have seen it. The lack of decidous leaves brought out features of beauty not noticed before along this trail, including a waterfall on a Dick's Fork tributary stream. Besides enjoying the beauty of the trail we managed to clean up after hunters/trashers to the tune of five bags full. Our statistician reported 81 minutes, 4.62 miles. Continuing on with the Woodland Corridor story, John is proposing to resume the second day, Thursday hikes to interest more folks in the allure of that trail. Stay tuned for more news once the trail is dedicated. Happy New Year!

Twas the day after Christmas, and all through the trails, the hikers were stirring--Bill and Maggie brought their daughter Jeanine along to join John, Margaret, Mary and Jim. We discussed where we could take Jeanine that was scenic. Hmm, tough decision. Are there any of our hikes that have not been scenic? On December 26 we opted for the rainforest road alongside Big Creek, for about two miles, and then to drive to Gerdemann's Gardens for additional mileage. The weather was perfect, overcast and about 50 degrees. The usual muddy sections at Gerdemann's were as dry as we have seen them, and the lack of leaves on the deciduous trees added a brightness to the forest and made the moss covered works of art really stand out. According to Mary, our official statistician, we covered 5.5 miles in 100 minutes. Our next hike will be our first for the year 2012. Happy New Year, everyone!

As a bit of an aside, every one of us is getting excited about the progress on the Woodland Corridor trail in Waldport, and have been exploring individually. The workers seem to enjoy what they are doing and certainly appreciate the compliments we are giving to them in all sincerity. They are doing a great job. I took a few photos last week and here they are:

December 19 was another cold day. Bill, Maggie, John, Margaret, George, Gillian, Jim and Mary met at Keady Wayside and decided to return to Legion Road, as we had not been there in quite some time. Considering that there has been very little rain (a record Oregon December low) the "lakes" along Legion Road were still pretty full. As we got close to "Dave's Manor," whom should we discover but Santa Claus himself, seated next to a nicely decorated live Christmas tree. We all gave him our gift wish lists and wish him well carrying all of the requested iPads, PlayStations, Digital Cameras and other stuff to us on Christmas Day. Here is a photo of the jolly gent himself, and another of the hikers of today, thanks to photographer Gillian. Wishing all of you who may read this a very Merry Christmas.

On December 12 the outside air temperature was right around freezing. Dedicated hikers Maggie, Mary, Bill, Curtis, John and Jim met at our usual place and decided to return to Road 5360 south of Eckman Lake. Curtis fit all of us into his van and off we went. We parked a ways past our usual "jumping off" spot and trekked up hill for a couple of miles, past the berm which leads to the tee trails. It didn't get much warmer but we were warmed by the hill climb effort. Bill had brought some plastic bags so we policed the road of several beer cans and a green plastic jug. Upon returning to the van and starting back down the hill, we encountered a road grader coming up the hill. We couldn't figure out what he was accomplishing, as he had really messed up the formerly smooth road. We owe Curt a car wash. (As an aside, I have added a page on my main site describing some of the Holiday Express fun this weekend) Continue to Holiday Express

December 5 (How has it become December?) dawned literally freezing, with frost all over roofs and some roads. Five stalwarts met at Keady Wayside, Margaret, Mary, Gillian, Curtis and Jim. John was representing us and other hikers at meetings, and had sent a list of them with Margaret, who shared with us. If any of you Walkers can make it, the SOLCOTT, South Lincoln County Trails group meeting is in the Waldport Community Center at 10:15AM tomorrow, Tuesday, and John would appreciate help from us in the public forum, passing on our contributions to the Waldport Trails effort. Back to the hikers, we five elected to go back to our beautiful short road off Blodgett Road to the reservoir. There were a lot of downed branches along the road, from the recent wind storm, but the stream was running hard, moreso than in the spring, and the view of the falls was very nice. Gillian took the photo of us at the end of trail. After returning to the car we decided to return to town and "do something exciting." Apparently that meant continuing to hike along the beach to the port launch area and back. Gillian's camera was acting up so we stopped into Maggie Rivers' office to check it. We ended up with 4.62 miles hiked, and ran into Jan and Gary at Keady, renewing old acquaintances.

Unlike last week, the storm took place on Sunday, and Monday, November 28 dawned bright, sunny and cold. Nine hikers, Gillian, George, Curtis, Bill, Mary-Margaret-Maggie, John and Jim gathered at Keady Wayside. It was so nice we decided to stay in the sun, cross the bridge, and investigate the once-again sand-drifted homes at the south end of Bayshore. We found quite a bit of new flotsam deposited on the north side of Alsea Bay and elsewhere along the beach. This place is such a natural wonder. Then we saw the results of the drifted sand on the Bayshore houses. It is such a terrible thing for the owners. One man was operating a small CAT plow removing the drifted sand from his back yard. On the way back we encountered a family moving into a home there on Bayshore, recently arrived from Virginia. They had not (apparently) walked around the block to check out the sand drifts. We also found a young mom with her two little boys who were enjoying the beach. John took a photo of them with the mom's camera. If I ever get around to it I will put another page of photos in addition to these, somewhere on this site. Oh, and we were having so much fun we walked 5.6 miles.

Sunbathing in some poor homeowner's yard--Gillian is too relaxed.

George has his $$$ out for a down payment on this scenic lot

Our group (and the young mom and kids) with new flotsam

The winter storms are upon us. Mary, Jim and John showed up at Keady Wayside in the rain. The rest of you were smarter. After a short discussion, Mary and Jim opted for indoor treadmills at Diane's Fitness. John, however, inspected the Woodland Trail:

I walked from the Kendall Park ball fields up the Woodland Trail (I see they've dropped "Corridor" in their signs) to asses the progress. In spite of all the rain the barked portion of the trail was very easy to walk on, and I was so well sheltered that I was hardly aware of the wind and rain. As you know they have as yet not surfaced (barked) the new sections of trail above the switch-backs. Near the top end of the trail i found two flagged sections which have as yet not been cleared, but will soon be according to Jay. One of these starts right beside the gate at the end of Park Street, and the other is north of there along Hill Street. Both of these sections are in a canopy forest. It is nice that they are working hard to avoid using the access road as the trail. I then ventured south along the sewer-line right-of-way which takes one all the way to the City property near Range Drive. I met with Larry Lewis after my walk and we discussed trail signs, mile markers, and plant identification signs (as suggested by Maggie Miller). I saw not one person during the time that I was out there.

Thanks for the report, John, for November 21.

On November 14, the sky looked threatening but we set out for Amanda's Trail once again. "We" were John, Margaret, Mary, Maggie, Bill, Gillian, Curtis, Jim2, Jane, Ken, Mary Emma and Jim. We started at a parking area along Yachats Ocean Road and made it to the bridge. We elected to go a little further and it was obvious that this trail would be a real challenge, and decided it would be much better to delay a march to "the top" until dry weather returned (next July?). Upon returning to the bridge, we took a few photos, with Jane's camera, which I will post when I receive them. Thanks for remembering to bring a camera, Jane. Mary Emma provided some history to the lighthouse dwelling visible from the trail. It is actually an operating lighthouse, privately owned, called Cleft of the Rocks, and was originally built by Jim Gibbs, a retired lighthouse keeper, who apparently did not want to quit working. I know readers will not believe this, but once again, after remaining dry for the entire 4.68 mile hike, once we started back to Waldport in our cars, it started to rain.

What a group of handsome people.

Our group met at Keady Wayside on November 7, and as usual could not decide among ourselves where to hike. Hunting season is still open. After much humming and hawing, someone suggested the 804 trail, so off went Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Gillian, Jayne, Curtis, Bill, John and Jim to Smelt Sands State Park. From there we hiked north to the beach and encountered some sneaker waves and a younger couple who were visiting and hiking along the beach. We shared some trail info with them. The surf and foam were just wild, and the sun came out to provide a wonderful vista of sea, waves, blue sky, big puffy clouds, and of course NONE of us had brought along a camera. We spotted some confused pelicans flying north. What an enjoyable day it turned out to be, after a rain shower just before we met. We hiked south to the State Park in Yachats and returned to the cars, logging another 4.8 miles in this beautiful place we call home.

I don't know where to start. On October 30, Sunday, it rained all day, so it was a given that there would be mud, no matter where we went. John and Jim had conspired to get everyone to start out on the newly groomed (still in progress) Woodland Corridor trails, to obtain some photos for John. We gathered on Haloween at Keady Wayside, Linda, Jayne, Beth, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Gillian, Bill, George, Curtis, John and Jim. John had brought a length of rope in the event that the steep parts had not been tended to. They weren't. We had hoped that the temporary log bridge at the bottom of the trail had been replaced, but it had not and it was tough to cross. The newly cut and chipped trail was very nice, and the very muddy part had been fixed. The new switchbacks were not yet completed, but we tackled them. Even when completed they will be a challenge. Once beyond that point, we attempted to identify and hike connecting trails to the various streets on the top side. Several of us received Oak Leaf Clusters for our "Do Not Follow" pins. We did find our way to Dolores Street at Norwood Heights, then attempted some other side trails where we split into at least two groups and lost sight of each other. Gillian, Maggie and Jim followed Margaret through the forest, for which she received an immediate "Do Not Follow" award. Curtis was singing "I love to go a-wandering, Along the mountain track, And as I go, I love to sing, My knapsack on my back." This was very appropriate for the day. Others were singing "I was lost but now am found." Eventually We regrouped and returned via Dolores Street. It was crazy, but fun and we managed 4.26 miles. The photo shoot was successful. Two below show the lower part of the new Woodland Corridor.

More good weather, high tide and wild surf greeted us on October 24th. We decided to go to Cape Perpetua, and what a great choice that turned out to be! Ten of us, Gillian, John, Margaret-Maggie-Mary, George, Jim, Jim2, Jane2 and Ruth were wowed by the spectacular show at the spouting horn below the Captain Cook's Chasm bridge. We all wondered why Curtis and Sharron had not joined us. The ocean was beautiful to behold. Mary headed off ahead of the rest of us and when we finished watching the spouting horn, we set off to find her, wrongly assuming that she headed south on the Pacific Coast Trail, which the rest of us did. At one of the lookouts, Maggie spotted Mary on the highway below and shouted to get her attention, so Margaret backtracked to meet Mary. The further along we got, George and I decided that the sun angle was getting better for photographs of the spouting horn, so the two of us turned back and met Mary and Margaret. We also met Curtis and a group of friends that he had brought to this scenic trail. Great minds run in the same channels.......When George and Jim had their fill of photos we headed back to the Visitors Center. Everyone else had arrived earlier, and discovered that Sharron had driven to the Visitors Center. She had become stuck in traffic due to road work north of Waldport, and since she was returning to California later this week, had really intended to join this hike. We were sorry to have missed you, Sharron. Some photos follow. Gillian suggested that this was a "meandering" hike, and so it was. The group photos convey the message "This is why we hike."

Good weather returned for our October 17th hike. Newcomers Irv and Jane3, along with Ken and Mary Emma joined 11 regulars, John, Margaret, Curtis, Mary, Gillian, Maggie, Beth, George, Jim, Sharron and Jayne for a total of fifteen hikers. It was decided to drive to the State Park in Yachats and walk the 804 south to Amanda's Trail, and along Amanda's to the site of the newly installed bridge across Amanda's Creek. The 804 south is part of the Oregon Coast Trail and John's markers were evident along the trail. As we ambled along Ocean View Drive, we noted that the site of the old cottages had not received any new buildings, and learned that the financing had dried up. Some of these new cars are so silent we didn't hear them approaching as we resembled a herd along Ocean View. Once we got on Amanda's Trail the group spread out more and we didn't all rejoin until we reached the new bridge, a magnificent structure, where Gillian took the photos below. We spent quite a bit of time at the bridge and Amanda's statue. On the return trip, three deer charged out of the shrubbery along Ocean View and entertained us. They then went down to the beach, a new one on us, where a couple of dogs frightened them and they charged back up and across our path again. This was a very nice hike, and a new one for the scribe. I would like to try to go to the top of Amanda's some day.

Statue of Amanda, The Group on the bridge

Another bridge shot, and a very nice viewpoint along the trail

Another stormy night and morning on October 10 did not stop intrepid hikers John, Margaret and Mary. Here is Mary's report: Only three cars showed up at Keady Wayside on Columbus Day, October 10.  One car left presumably for a more climate-friendly venue.  Clad in full rain gear, John, Margaret and Mary drove up Range Drive to the old logging road where the weather calmed down a notch or two.  Though we hiked for only 55 minutes, we did stumble upon "Jim's House," that strange structure first discovered by Jim and then seemingly lost to us in future hikes among this tangle of trails.  Sad to report, but the "house" has collapsed and is now as pile of rubble. Unfortunately none of our able photographers was present to record its demise. Thank you, Mary.

A number of hikers met at Keady Wayside on October 3. While discussing where to go, everyone got drenched in a downpour. This scribe elected to leave, which he did. Mary sent the following report:

On October 3, a gentle early morning rain turned into an all-out downpour just as we gathered at Keady Wayside.  Beth, Jayne and Jim  (yes, Jim!) opted out of a soaking walk in the woods.  Six seemingly foolish walkers, Curtis, John, Bill and the three M&M girls Maggie, Margaret and Mary, headed for the protective canopy of trees on Dick's Fork Road.  The heavy rain let up and we managed a hike of a little over four miles. We shared the road with three large yellow ODOT trucks.  The first driver radioed ahead to the others to look out for us on the trail.  They are preparing for some work on the forest road so we may be running into them again.  We encountered no hunters and heard no gun fire. All in all. a peaceful stroll in the forest. Maggie, Bill and Mary were glad to be home from their travels to neighboring states and back to our Monday morning hike with friends.

The scribe went to the gym for two miles on the treadmill, then back out in the afternoon for 2.25 miles outside after the rain quit.

After months of dry weather, the rainy season started again on the weekend of September 24-25. On Monday the 26th, seven intrepid walkers met, and it was difficult to stand up straight with the wind velocity off the water. John had to attend a meeting and Gillian decided to opt for the warm, indoor environment of the Newport recreation center. We five, who may need a sanity check, Vern, Margaret, Finn, Sharron and Jim decided to stay close by, so we sped across the bridge, assisted by quite a tailwind, and discussed what the return trip might be like. Once across the bridge, we went down to the beach even though the tide was coming in, and walked to the motel beach. We turned around and noted new "No Trespassing" signs, which of course we came upon via the back side, so did not see them until we had already trespassed. The thought of changing our name from Waldport Walkers to Traveling Trespassers crossed my mind. From the motel we went up the hill to the edge of the KOA grounds and on to the high point where the wind was even more noticeable. We opted to take the road through the Seventh Day Adventist lot to 101 and back across the bridge, which wasn't quite as bad as anticipated. Upon return to Keady Wayside we had logged 3.44 miles. Vern and Finn are both leaving this week so goodbyes were said.

September 19 dawned foggy. Keady Wayside became crowded with newcomers Mary Emma and Ken, Ruth, Tom, Kristin and Jasper the 150 pound big gentle dog, along with regulars Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Beth, Gillian, George, Curtis, Bill, John and Jim. Our group of 15 set out for a return to the Beaver Creek state park, as hunting season is in full swing. Undeterred by an accident on highway 101, we all arrived at the South Beaver Creek Road entrance, and hiked the lower loop to the point where it starts uphill, then reversed course and split into three groups. We had stopped at the bridge at the end of the marsh trail, where Jasper had a swim in Beaver Creek. We went uphill at the North Beaver trail, to Snaggy Point trail, then back to the loop via the North Fork trail. Another enjoyable day, 4.89 miles. The photo is courtesy of Gillian and 12 of us are visible.

On September 12, 15 hikers gathered, and Gillian had done research on the Beaver Creek Marsh Trail, learning that it was dry enough to negotiate, so we elected to revisit the Oregon State Park at Beaver Creek. I was informed today that the 3M group, Maggie, Mary and Margaret, are actually the 3M squared group, as each of their last names also start with the letter M. They were joined by Gillian, Beth, Sharron (welcome back), Lily, Barbara, Jayne, Jim, George, Curtis, Finn, John and Bill. We parked at the Park Visitor Center and made it across the Beaver Marsh Trail, and for those of you who have a map, we continued south on the Beaver Creek Loop trail to the North Fork trail, went uphill to the Snaggy Point trail, then Snaggy Point Loop where we paused at the picnic table for a group shot which George will provide later--check back for it. From there we continued on the Snaggy Point Loop to Cougar Ridge trail, down the hill to N. Cougar Ridge, then South Fork trail back to the Loop and back across the Marsh, for 4.88 miles. It was a great day. Some of the folks picked berries but would not share them with the rest (just joking). I am typing this in great conflict with the US Open Tennis final and the visiting Cedar Waxwings.

Great Photo, George, thanks

Labor Day, September 5, found the ladies (Beth, Gillian, Linda, Jayne and the 3M group, Maggie, Margaret and Mary) outnumbering the men (Bill, Curtis, George, Jim, John and Vern). We 13 headed for Mike Miller Park in South Beach. John had found a new entrance to the trails a little beyond the advertised one, so we parked there. John had neglected to tell us about the roller coaster nature of this trail, and some members were tiring quickly. For this, John earned an Oak Leaf Cluster to his "Don't Follow Me" award. The weather was cool and overcast while our neighbors in Portland were baking. When we reached Marker 9 on the trail, the map showed it to be a dead end but we trudged on, and it was actually a connecting trail to the area around the Community College campus. In order to get to the campus from a housing development, Mary also earned an Oak Leaf Cluster by leading us through the woods. We examined the new Aquarium Science building and the Master Gardener's garden, then Curtis and Gillian haggled with the developers over new condos to be built. By now we had split into about three groups. We all met back at Marker 9 and retraced our path to the cars. In so doing, we managed to miss most of the original loop at the park, and I propose that we return there next week to experience that part. Photos are of part of the group at the Aquarium building, on the trail, and some of us playing in the playground. Forgot to report that we met another organized hiking group from Newport along the trail.

August 29 (Did I ask what happened to July? Now two days left in August?) And bow season opened two days ago and will continue till the end of September, when rifle/shotgun season starts. OK, undaunted by this news, our group decided to return to the roads south of Eckman Lake. You know how I love the alliteration thing, and soon after we left our parking spot, Mary, Margaret and Maggie were out in front, followed by Jayne, Jim, George and Jillian, then Curtis, Lily, Finn, and Barbara--really. That would soon change. When we reached the place that I like to refer to as "The Intersection," the leaders continued marching down the hill toward Highway 101. Some of us decided we would rather go to the fish ladder, since Finn, Barbara and Lily had not been there before. Margaret sprinted after the leaders and returned to our small group. Soon everyone was back together headed for the fish ladder. The evidence of our drought showed on the moss covering the trees. It was quite dry along the road. Lily enjoyed the fish ladder and caught a small frog. We returned to the cars and had logged 5.5 miles. Mary, Gillian, Maggie, George, Curtis, and Lily probably logged over 6 miles. We decided to visit Mike Miller park at South Beach, next Monday, Labor Day. Gillian took the two photos below, and we thank her.

August 22 was "mountain climbing day." At Keady wayside, Jayne returned to the group along with Salem's Jim2 and Jane. Gillian showed up with Magnus, her "adopted grandson for a day." Our eclectic and alliterative group, Mary, Margaret, Maggie and Magnus, Jayne, Jim, Jane, Jim2, Gillian, Beth, Curtis, Lily and Vern set out for the Visitors Center at Cape Perpetua. It was misty and wet, but that didn't dismay us. At the visitors center we met Finn and Barbara, friends of John and Margaret, from Tucson, AZ and they joined us to make a total of fifteen climbers. That trail, St. Perpetua, is a great one. We were told that the elevation was about 800 feet at the top. It is listed at 2.2 miles round trip, but my pedometer recorded 4.75. Short steps? At the top, it was just about zero visibility, and we hiked to the rock hut. Amazingly (as usual) the sky started to clear and soon we could see all the way to Heceta Head. A boat was circled by the Coast Guard helicopter but was apparently in no trouble, as the helicopter continued south. On the way back down, all of the vista points that were fogged in on the up trip provided nice views. Hopefully Jane will send us a group photo to attach later. Great day, good friends, many of whom attended the NOAA open house over the weekend.

Here is Jane's photo, and thank you Jane. Waldport Walkers at "The Top"

August 15 dawned to be a continuation of a great summer. Our group met and discussed options, the beach, Cape Perpetua, others. Gillian suggested the Giant Spruce trail at Cape perpetua, and off went Curt, Ed, Deb, Mary, Margaret, Maggie (welcome back!), Beth, Gillian and Jim. We parked at Captain Cook's Chasm bridge and walked to the visitor center, and from there to the Giant Spruce, now that the trail has re-opened. Mary's secret place is no longer secret, as a trail is quite visible to it these days. We walked across the campground to the base of Saint Perpetua Trail, the face of the mountain, and as we returned to the Visitor Center the conversation centered on "When will we attack St. Perpetua Trail?" We decided to propose that for next Monday. It will not be for the faint of heart. Bring water, hiking sticks, snacks. We intend to place at least one car at the top for anyone who will not want to try to hike back down the trail, tough on the knees. If a larger crowd shows Monday and some folks don't want to do this, we can change plans. Happy birthday, Vern, we missed you. The two photos below are from today, taken by Gillian at the Giant Spruce and at Mary's secret place of meditation. Thanks Gillian.

August 8 was a nice sunny day, and as usual, 10 of us could not decide where to hike. The downhill trail near Dahl Disposal that led to the late Mr. Helms' place was chosen. Curtis, Lily, Vern, Deb, Ed, Margaret, John, Gillian, Beth and Jim started down that trail, which was quite overgrown. We did not get very far when we ran into an obstacle on the trail and backtracked to another which led to a nice overlook, but dead end. Back to the cell tower at Dahl we traipsed, and headed west through the field. Did I mention things were overgrown? We were in some tall grass peppered with wild sweet peas and other flowers. Eventually we got into the maze of trails north of Dahls and came out at Green Drive. Back we went, and again were unable to locate Jim's former home (See last August 16 for a photo). The last few trails were pretty hilly so we were glad to see the cell tower once again. Three deer joined us briefly at the end of the hike, and they looked very healthy. I believe the term for today was "Random Rambling," right Gillian? 4.15 miles.

On August 1 (sheesh, what happened to July?) a smaller group of us gathered. Mary suggested the 804 trail, as the tide has been very low the last few days, so Beth, Gillian, Sharron, George, Vern, Curtis and Jim joined her for this adventure. When the tide is out, the surf really changes along the trail. We were entertained by a few flocks of low flying pelicans plus a lot of humans and dogs sharing the trail. When one just observes the beauty of this whole area, it is really glorious. We are so lucky to live here. The day was beautiful and we could have stayed all day. As it was, we covered 4.76 miles, and Mary and Sharron probably logged 5 or more. The group photo and two others below were taken by Gillian. Thanks.

Beth lecturing the "Gang of Six" for today

"King of the Mountain, Vern"

Investigating tide pools at the north end

July 25 saw the return of Sharron and her friend, Sue, who joined John, Margaret, George, Mary, Curtis, Lily, Vern, Maggie, Jim, Beth, Ed and Deborah, and all set out for Risley Creek Road out at Taylor's Landing. We passed an accident in close to Waldport on Highway 34, and followed Ed up this single lane forest road, encountering a couple clearing a downed tree alongside the road. Some 4.5 miles later we pulled over still on road 3446. On the way up we had passed a sign to the Harris Ranch trail, which begs for further exploration. We walked along 3446 through some more beautiful forest, in and out of the fog and mist. We covered 4.35 miles on another great hiking day, on new territory.

On July 18, twelve hikers met at Keady wayside. Mary, Maggie, Margaret (I love doing that), John, Vern, Curtis, George, Gillian, Ed, Deborah, Lily and Jim went up to Waldport Heights to explore the water system and power line trails. We paused to check the vista looking east out the Alsea River and were attacked by mosquitoes. Vern decided to take his hike back to the cars which was a smart idea, as the rest of us suffered many bites on this hike. When we got to the place where the road to Peterson Park branched off, we split into two groups. Mary led Lily, Margaret, George, Ed and Deborah up the path which led to our friendly horses, while John led Jim, Curtis, Gillian and Maggie down to Lint Slough. As was the case last week, the foxgloves were everywhere. It has been a good year for them. When the Lint Slough group got back to the top of the hill, Margaret met them with news that the others were warned that they were trespassing on private property by a homeowner. We rejoined forces and backtracked to the starting point, for about 3.5 miles total, lots of up and down.

July 11 found a new couple, Ed and Deborah, joining George, Mary, John, Gillian, Curtis, Maggie, Margaret, Jim, Beth, Linda, and the return of Vern for a hike up to the fish ladder at Dick's Fork creek, which was as always, a beautiful hike. Mosquitoes chased us away from the fish ladder. We parked at our usual place which makes this a very long hike, 5.46 miles today. The U.S. Forest Service is to be commended for the repair job they have done on the road (5360) leading to the site. Thank you. We all hope Ed and Deborah enjoyed the hike, and welcome back, Vern.

On Celebrate America Day, July 4, Jim's son-in-law John joined Curtis, Lily, George, Mary, Margaret, Maggie, John, Jim, Gillian and Bill for a hike suggested by John and tried earlier by Bill and Maggie, starting from the trailhead at the top of Cummins Creek trail at Cape Perpetua. The scenery was beautiful in the forest, and the trail got very steep. We came out into a clearing with a breathtaking view of the valley containing Yachats River Road from about 1800 feet elevation. Along the trail there was evidence of an extreme biker run that some people had set up--crazy. Maggie and Bill had found an easier way down which joined the road (55) and led us back to the cars, which were four miles from highway 101 on 55. This hike was filled with fantastic scenery and a fitting one for the Fourth of July. Thanks to John, Margaret, Bill and Maggie for suggesting this one, much enjoyed by all. Following the hike, Mary, Margaret and John investigated a dirt road off road 55, and Jim took Curtis, Lily and John B up to the lookout on top of Cape Perpetua, as they had not been there. Here is our group photo.

On June 27, Curtis brought his daughter Lily to join Mary, Margaret, Maggie, Linda, Gillian, George, John and Jim for a two-part hike. We began at Blodgett Road on our favorite rainforest/waterfall road, which did not satisfy the four mile rule, so we drove to Gerdemann Gardens and added 2 more miles. Lily caught one of the tiny frogs we see around here during the first part, and she released it. Several of us had been traveling, so we caught up on the news. John brought maps of the Cape Perpetua trails, and the plan for next week, July 4th, is to drive to the top of the Cummins Creek trail where several trail options exist. There is talk of stopping in Yachats on the way back for pie and the La De Da parade. The following photo has nothing to do with our hiking, but it was the reason I was missing last week.

Southern Pacific Daylight locomotive 4449 running through Steilacoom, WA.

The scribe continues to be unreliable. Mary sent this report for the June 20 hike: On June 20, the last day of our rainy spring, five Waldport Walkers appeared at Keady Wayside to celebrate spring's final day.  We were glad to welcome Sharron back, but quickly learned she will be  returning to California for at least another month.  Joining Sharron were Maggie, Lyla, Curtis and Mary.  We chose a simple beach walk.  The tide was low, a negative one, and the wind was a its ebb point as well  Our walk took  us  to Wakonda Beach and back for a total of 4 1/2 miles. What began with a light mist ended with beautiful sunshine. 

Your scribe was unable to make the June 13th hike due to "supervising" a new garage door installation. Mary provided this report: On Monday, June 13, eleven Waldport Walkers met at Keady Wayside amid heavy drizzle.  Welcoming new member Sandy were John, Margaret, Bill, Maggie, George, Curtis, Gillian, Beth, Lyla and Mary.  We drove up Dick's Fork Road and hiked to our foxglove meadow where we found the vegetation has made quite a comeback  after its recent mowing.  We were nearly as wet as  as we were  on the Beaver Creek trails of one week ago.We finished with a hike up the forest road for another mile or so. Our good deed for the day consisted of removing a tree from the path to the meadow.  This Herculean feat was accomplished with only one brush with disaster. The scribe would be interested to learn of the "brush with disaster." I will not be attending next Monday as I will be enroute to the National Railway Historical Society convention in Tacoma. Keep up the recording, Mary, and thank you.

For our first hike in June, on the 6th, we decided to visit the Beaver Creek Natural Area after a long absence. I think we did that a little too early, as it was bloody muddy and the grass was very wet. Linda, Beth, Gillian, Mary, Margaret, Maggie and Lyla joined George, John, Curtis, Bill and Jim for a hike around the Beaver Creek Loop Trail, which we did and it turned out to be 4.24 miles counting a short side trip to Snaggy Point, which Bill had not seen before. The rangers had mowed part of the loop trail but apparently gave it up about halfway around as we hiked through tall wet grass. We need to petition the rangers to fill in some of the very muddy areas with gravel if they will do so. We did encounter another couple hiking, which we have done in the past at the natural area. It really is a great place to hike, but much more enjoyable when it's dry. We drove up to the Visitors Center and picked up some copies of the new, revised trail map. Some of the trails have been re-named and some have lost their identity, such as Fairway Meadow, which is a very appropriate name.

Photo by Gillian at Snaggy Point. Alas, no one volunteered to dance on the picnic table. Maggie was hiding.

Memorial Day, May 30 saw a collection of 13 of us arriving at Keady Wayside. Jan Power gave us a short presentation of the City of Waldport trails and a request for volunteers from the group to help keep the City effort going on trails. Then Curtis, Jim2, Jane, Bill, Maggie, George, Mary, Gillian, John, Margaret, Beth, Linda and Jim set out across the bridge and down the KOA trail to the beach, along the streets in Bayshore to a beach access, to the Alsea River jaws. At this point, most of us men wimped out and turned around. Curtis, John, George and Jim coaxed Beth, Linda, Margaret and Gillian to join them. Meanwhile, Mary, Bill, Maggie, Jim2 and Jane continued around the sand spit heading for the Bayshore Beach Club. Interestingly, we all ended up at the KOA grounds at about the same time on our return trip. John, Gillian and Beth jogged across the bridge in an attempt to humiliate the rest of us slow folks. Shame. Immature bald eagles were spotted in the bay along with the usual harbor seals. The local flora is really out in bloom and many varieties were spotted. Today's hike added 5 miles to our total. Anyone interested in a difficult hike is welcome to report to the usual gathering place on Wednesday, June 1.

May 23, 2011. An historic event in our group took place today, hike number 100, meaning we have accumulated some 400 miles, the distance from west to east across Oregon. We were joined by new member Stephanie, who joined John, Margaret, Mary, Gillian, Beth, Bill, Maggie, Curtis, Jayne, Lyla and Jim at the Port Dock. We set off along the beach.

We had not gotten too far along when who should we discover but Linda, bringing our total population to 13.

All of us proceeded along the beach to the stairs leading up to Highway 101, which we took, and went along 101 to the Forest Service facility, up the trail to Norwood Heights and around the neighborhood, to Beth's house, where we found her beautiful gardening efforts, then up Pacific View drive where Beth earned her "Do Not Follow Me" pin by leading us down a dead end to a viewsight which did not materialize. When we returned to the Port we spent some time at the Salty Dawg for lunch and drinks and discussions about our activist future.

It was a very nice weather day and a very nice group to share time with. If you don't believe that, check us out in this group photo provided by Gillian:

No comment.

On May 16, John and Margaret returned to the group, and John was awarded his "Don't Follow Me" pin. Gillian, Mary, Jayne, Beth, George, Curtis and Jim joined them and set off for Legion Road. Legion resembled the Land of 10,000 lakes once again and it was drizzling. Mary reported that most hikers managed to accumulate 4.96 miles, but this web wimp turned arond early due to a doc appointment. Thank you Margaret for marking the spot on the trail to detour and avoid the BIG lake. If any of you read this, next week will mark hike number 100. Shall we celebrate? Why don't we adjourn to the Salty Dawg right after Monday's hike and have a celebratory adult beverage and/or lunch? Jayne, I split up the photos, so check the ones here: Photos from late March

For our 98th hike on May 9, Curtis, Vern, Gillian, Jim, Beth, Jayne, George and Mary met and decided to "close the loop" on Blodgett Road (5360) by driving up to the intersection of 1046 and 5360, and hiking to the berm where we parked way back on April 11th. The road was not a pleasant drive, but we made it just in time to get rained on, the opposite of our usual good luck. We set out anyway, and indeed the high point there is above 1400 feet elevation. The triliums seem to thrive at that elevation as they were everywhere. More small waterfalls were found and quite a few beer cans. No salamanders spotted this week. Wouldn't you know we found two more interesting side roads which will need future exploration, road 421 and 415. We need to get a Jeep to negotiate the road to the top. Pam Lamphear, my talented friend from church, had made some very inventive "Don't Follow Me" buttons, and two were awarded for after-the-fact leadership events to Mary and Gillian. They were well received, and we thank you Pam. Another 4.4 miles in the books.

Curtis' photo of our conquest, thanks Curt

At Keady Wayside, 9:30 AM, May 2, it was raining fairly hard. Some of our fair weather friends stopped by to indicate that other plans precluded them from joining the six of us who were prepared to walk in the rain. That would be Mary, Maggie, Jayne, Jim, Curtis and Bill. We were like a ship without a rudder due to the absence of John and Margaret. Nevertheless, we set out for the upper portion of Dick's Fork road and its side trails. The little salamanders were again very plentiful, and Jayne remarked that she first knew them as "water dogs." We parked at the "road closed" sign a few miles up the road and investigated a side trail to the north, where we found a lot of trash, including a couch and some perfectly good children's folding chairs, brand new sheets, lots of cans and really too much to carry out. We went on up to the intersection of all the roads just past the disused reservoir, and down the short dead end and back. In the process we filled another four or five bags with others' trash. For the most part we were free of rain, and when it did rain it was very light. 4.55 miles.

Another stormy night gave way to light drizzle at hike time on April 25, the day after Easter. Bill, Maggie, Vern, Margaret, John, Mary and Jim braved the elements and returned to our wind-shielded haven, Dick's Fork road. We hiked into the meadow formerly known as the foxglove meadow. The roads off Dick's Fork drain fast and it was not very wet. Many of the little salamanders were seen. They have been rare lately, do they hibernate? We then went off the beaten path to the north and found another seldom used road with some real old growth huge stumps, and another road that appears to have been groomed recently, along the power lines. On the way back to the cars we were rained upon, and Keady Wayside was very cold, wet and windy. This marks two straight hikes where the men outnumbered the women. Come on back, ladies, we miss you. Once again we policed the mess left by thoughtless people.

No one could believe that the sun was actually shining on April 18. For our 95th hike, John, Curtis, Vern (welcome back), George, Bill and Jim (6 men), were joined by Maggie, Margaret, Mary (I love doing that), Beth and Gillian (5 women). For the first time, men outnumbered the ladies. Apparently men do not make a big difference in the direction of the hike, as we wandered aimlessly once again, starting south on the very low tide beach until the wind came up, doubling back to Patterson Park, up and down streets and roads in Waldport, with an eventual return to Keady Wayside, 4.27 miles. Gillian sent this photo of us all aimless on the beach. Thanks, Gillian.

When we met at Keady Wayside on April 11, it was raining, following a few sunny days. Jim's daughter Laurie joined Bill, Maggie, John, Margaret, Curtis, Jayne, Jim and Mary and we headed up Blodgett Road and parked 4.3 miles up that road, past the quarry. It had stopped raining by the time we got there. Thanks to Mary and Bill for driving. The forest road, 1046, was quite scenic, with small waterfalls, lots of Trillium(s), and was a gentle upslope. We walked 2.12 miles beyond the parking place, and at times got rained and snowed upon. Yes, snow. Deep slopes on both sides of this road were obvious. The elevation at the end of our walk was 1400 feet, and that was beyond the intersection with Road 5360, the same road we were on to reach the site we hiked two weeks ago. We found a couple of signs that read 2/26 AOL, a mystery, and another road that we need to explore in the future. I measured distance on the topo maps when we got home and determined that we were about 1 1/2 miles from the spot where we parked two weeks ago. Another road that runs all the way from Highway 101 to Eckman Lake. The rain and snow stopped and we policed the beer cans, shotgun shells and other debris on the way back to the cars. Very interesting. Laurie enjoyed all of your company.

April 4 dawned with moisture-laden clouds as far as could be seen. Bill, Maggie, John, Margaret, Beth, Jayne, Gillian, Mary and Jim met at Keady wayside and stayed close to town by hiking south on the beach, where we saw a baby seal which had been stranded. John had been tracking the seal for a few days. The wind came up and we reversed course, heading across the Highway 101 bridge, down the road past the Seventh Day Adventist church, through the KOA grounds, down to the beach under the bridge and back to Keady, 4.27 miles. As I stopped at the mailbox at home, it started to rain.

As promised last week, we returned to Road 5361 over the disaster of a road, up to the berm where we were before. A good sized group participated this week, again with equal numbers of males and females. Margaret, Mary, Maggie, Gillian, Jayne, and Jane were joined by John, Curtis, George, Jim, Bill and Jim2. There were places where the trails were pretty muddy, but we discovered some beautiful grottos and meadows along the two "tee" trails beyond where we stopped last week. Marring the beauty was an old abandoned pickup truck that someone had pushed over a bank and left. Several of us took a bunch of photos, and later I will put some more on the second page, but for now just a couple. At the end of the second tee trail some obvious logging had taken place, again marring the beauty of the scenery.

Our Group at the "tee" and I don't remember the trees leaning.

The group heading up the second tee.

Click here for more photos

On March 21, guess what? It had rained again during the early morning. John, Margaret, Bill, Maggie, Curtis (welcome back), Mary, Jim and Gillian met and set off for the roads beyond Eckman Lake, this time negotiating the huge potholes beyond our normal parking place. From there we hiked up the mountain to some seldom used old roads, road 5361 and 412 on the map below. We discovered several small but scenic waterfalls, and achieved Gillian's goal of reaching "the top." Look on the map and you can find the tee intersection where we turned around, and it is at Yachats Mountain, the top indeed. On the way up we heard a "one note" bird which sounded like squealing brakes. None of us could identify it. The roads we found were beautiful, and the plan for next week is to drive up to the intersection of roads 5360 and 5361 to investigate the two roads off the tee where we stopped. Look carefully at the map and you will find that the road we were on actually connects to the one off the Blodgett quarry that we had discussed today.

Our Group, photo by Curtis.

Another dark and stormy night, March 14. We seem to have a lot of them lately, and oh, an occasional tsunami. Optimists Bill, Maggie, Mary, John and Jim were re-joined by our traveler Jayne and we decided to go to Dick's Fork road to avoid mud. We set off on the lower dirt road that led north from the main one, and decided that it was one of the first ones we ventured out on, so many months ago, which led to Wakonda Beach road. It became pretty impassible short of Wakonda, so we backtracked and found a place where a massive washout occurred, and also a "dump" site which even contained a hot tub that someone tossed. We continued on up Dick's Fork and discovered a group of skunk cabbage just blossoming, and as Mary said, a sure sign of spring. I forgot to mention that the sun came out and we experienced no rain. We did pick up a lot of trash and managed over four miles. Did any of you happen to see the video of the Waldport Centennial on the South Lincoln County News website? Some of us were in it.

In contrast to last Monday, March 7 looked promising. Twelve of us met at Keady Wayside, and again men equalled the women, at least in numbers. Jeremy, Jim2 and Jane rejoined the group with Gillian, Mary, Margaret, Beth, Maggie, George, John, Bill and Jim. I'm not sure how to start, or finish, our tale of aimless wandering today. With gas prices at $3.69 and rising daily, we elected to leave the cars at Keady, and since the tide was low, start down the beach to the south. As usual, the TV weather guessers were wrong when it came to the coast, and the wind came up, joined with rain. George did not have any rain gear and elected to return to his car. The rest of us were not as smart, and continued down the beach to a trail leading back to the streets near John and Margaret's home. From there we went through the "holy ground" at St. Lukes church, and up the dirt road leading to Chad Drive. From there, "Don't Follow" Jim led the group down a city access road alongside a deep ravine. Coming back out of that road, "Don't Follow" Gillian suggested entering the maze of logging roads south of Range Drive, which we did, and Margaret told us that she had gotten lost in the many loops there while hiking alone last week, so we decided to become lost en masse with her, which we nearly did. On our way back out of the maze, John decided to show Margaret the short way home and we all followed him. Let us say that John has become the latest addition to the "Don't Follow" group, as he led us down a narrow overgrown stream bed and over logs to the top of Seabrook Road. From there we went down the power line access road along highway 101 and up the hill to Norwood Heights, and back to Keady. My pedometer said 5.04 miles. See you all at Waldport's Centennial celebration tomorrow.

Photo by Gillian from today

February 28--"It was a dark and stormy night." Sure was, thunderstorm just after 2AM. While making the morning coffee the wind and rain were pelting the windows. Undaunted, John, Bill, Maggie and Jim met at Keady. We decided to call off the hike. Tide was high and the bay was choppy. I drove to the gym, and as a real indicator of how bad the weather was, stalwarts Mary and Margaret were at the gym, not even checking in at Keady! Maybe next week.

Presidents Day, February 21, started cold but turned out to be a beautiful day. Ten of us met at Keady, and Maggie and Bill suggested our favorite road off Blodgett, as somehow they had not been there on our previous outings. They were joined by John, Margaret, George, Gillian, Beth, Mary, Linda and Jim. Big Creek was running strong and the falls was a sight to behold. The beauty of this particular hike must be experienced first hand, and Maggie and Bill did so today. We also went "down the hill" to the Big Creek crossing. On the way back up, Gillian and Jim investigated a side trail which came out at the Maintenance facility where we had parked. At this point some folks elected to call it a day and others went up Blodgett Road for another mile added to the trip. Another great day, and Presidents Day has replaced the former celebrations of President Abraham Lincoln, Feb. 12, and George Washington, Feb. 22. It now is celebrated on a convenient "in between" Monday, allowing our citizens to have another three day weekend. It also now includes all Presidents, even William Henry Harrison, our 9th, inaugurated in January 1841. He fell ill at the inauguration and died 31 days later. Your scribe was added to the "I'll not follow him/her again" list today. I have added more pictures on the second page.

Most of our crew at the falls view point

Maggie and Bill, and John, coming back up the hill from the Big Creek crossing.

Click here for more photos

The weather for Monday, February 14, Valentine's Day, was again predicted to be rainy and windy. Seven brave souls met at Keady Wayside, and for the first time, our alliterative lot of ladies, Margaret, Maggie and Mary, were outnumbered by the males, Bill, Curtis, John and Jim. We motored to Cook's Chasm bridge and walked a short bit of the west Cape Perpetua trails, crossed the road via the tunnel, went south on the Oregon Coast Trail to the junction of Gwynn Creek. There was no way to go to Neptune beach as the surf and tide were high, so we hiked up Gwynn Creek trail. It was very scenic and the creek was really running. We welcomed Curtis and Mary back to the group, and Mary still wanted to go "just another five minutes" or "just around the next bend," which we did a few times. It started to rain, and as we returned to our starting point, the trail began to resemble a stream bed. Those who emailed Sunday night and begged off due to the forecast whould not have been pleased.

Hikers on the trail

Our happy and wet group. Both photos by Curtis.

I guess it was inevitable that our weather luck would one day run out. Today, February 7, was the day. 44 degrees with rain and wind made us all detour to other methods of excercise. Bill, Maggie, George, Gillian, John, Margaret and Jim did meet briefly at Keady Wayside. About an hour later your scribe braved the elements and investigated short side trails off the Woodland Corridor, the cart road on the golf course, and Crestline. Not the same.

The desperado has not been apprehended, so a decision was made on January 31 to avoid hiking north of town. For the first time since we have started, the ladies, Margaret, Linda, Maggie and Gillian, did not outnumber the men, John, Jim, Bill and George. The eight of us drove to the new cell tower near Dahl Disposal, and set off into the maze of old logging roads. It was quite muddy considering that there has not been significant rain since last Friday. We slogged on, at times entering the WAA (wandering around aimlessly) mode, or as Gillian stated, "rambling." The cell tower is a great and highly visible landmark, and we managed to find our way back to it after a little more than three miles. Many critter tracks were spotted on the trails. More new territory was found today.

Excitement in Waldport! January 24. Police presence everywhere. Late last night a man stopped for a traffic violation in Lincoln City shot a policeman and sped south on 101 pursued by many police vehicles. A spike strip stopped him north of Waldport, but he took off on foot, toward Bayshore. We hikers, Gillian, Maggie, George, Linda, Margaret, John and Jim, observing the SWAT team across the bay, tactfully decided to hike south of Waldport. Gerdemann Botanical Preserve was chosen, and off we went, past the lighted highway advisory sign which read: Police Activity. Do not pick up hitchhikers. We obeyed the sign. Passing the Hilltop market we observed that one of the houses next to the market had suffered a fire last night. The gardens were a much more tranquil sight and we discovered that even though the rain had stopped a few days ago, the trail had turned into a stream bed in places. Very muddy. We hiked up to the reservoir and noted that the little stream alongside the trail was running pretty strongly. The sun came out and was welcome. We had not seen blue sky in days. Would you believe that one of the rhodies in the garden was blooming in January? As far as we know, the desperado is still on the loose, and apparently had taken some shots at a fisherman in a boat on Alsea Bay. We will be locking up tonight.

January 17. It has been raining torrents for days. John reported his rain gauge showed 6.1 inches in the last two days. John, Margaret, Mary, Jayne, Gillian, Bill, Maggie and Jim met at Keady Wayside and it was windy. Mary reported that her roof was leaking and returned home. To celebrate MLK day, the rest of us went to Dick's Fork road and parked at the junction of the Foxglove Meadow road. This is getting very strange, as once again the rain stopped. We hiked to road 414 and along that road past the South Lincoln Water district tank. It was muddy and a large number of salamanders were spotted. They probably got washed out of their shelters. When the hike was completed, Margaret demonstrated her power by proclaiming "let it rain," and guess what, the rain started again.

Photo By Gillian

On January 10, Linda suggested that we revisit the fish ladder road, Road 417, so John, Margaret, Curtis, Mary, Gillian, Bill, Maggie, Beth, Jayne and Jim joined her and drove to the intersection of Road 5360, which just seems to be calling us back, and Road 1045, Dick's Fork. From there we hiked to and up Road 417 to the fish ladder. The alder trees had lost their leaves, making it a little brighter in the forest. Unfortunately there was a lot of refuse along the road and we picked up most of it. The last mile to the fish ladder continues to impress us with it's beauty. Small waterfalls on Dick's Fork creek were evident, and the moss on the trees makes it quite a wonderland. Gillian and Curtis recorded a lot of it on film. Good choice, Linda.

It would appear that many folks made New Year's resolutions to resume hiking, as we had a turnout of 14 hikers for the first hike of 2011. Bill and Maggie, Jim2 and Jane, and Diana were welcomed back by Curtis, John, Margaret, Mary,Jayne, Linda, Beth, Jim and Gillian, and we set off for road 5360 off Eckman Lake road, hopefully to escape the cold winds. It was cold but very sunny! Evidence of hunters and loggers was present in the forms of beer cans, an elk carcass, and obvious mowing and trimming of the roadside. A lot of our conversation centered on new computers and problems with them, as that is what their purpose is. Gillian and Curtis brought cameras and photographed the "Saguaro Cactus Tree" off Gillian's Fork. Hopefully they will send me one to attach to this.

The tree, now known as "Jim's Tree" Photo by Curtis

Most of our hikers had family visitors for the Christmas weekend, but Gillian, George, Mary and Jim met at Keady Wayside on December 27th. George and Gillian decided to excercise on the indoor track in Newport, as it was raining lightly. Mary and Jim were the only two hikers, so we decided to stay close and went down along the beach to the path to Corona Court, across 101 and up the dirt road to Chad Avenue, crossed to Norwood Heights and came back down the trail to the Forest Service headquarters, back to the beach and to Keady, 3.37 miles.

We met at the gazebo at Keady on December 20 for our Christmas photo. Curtis brought his son Nathan and his girlfriend Cassie, and daughter Lily. They joined Jayne, Gillian, George, Jan, Gary, the puppy, John, Margaret, Beth, and Jim for the photo (below) and then we split up, Gillian, George and Jayne opting for indoor excercise (we had been experiencing showers and it didn't look promising), and eight of us revisiting the idyllic rain forest road off Blodgett, to show our visiting guests. Big Creek was running hard and the waterfall was impressive. All the youngsters are college students and were intrigued by our little salamanders. We hope they enjoyed hiking with us seniors. We were concerned that Mary did not show up, so stopped to visit her on the way, learning that she was suffering from a flu-like illness. We missed you, Mary.

And look at the falls.

Curtis, Mary, Jim, Gillian, John and Margaret met and the weather was not promising. We decided to accomplish the thought we came up with at the end of last week's hike and investigate the side roads off Dick's Fork. I know that readers will not believe this, but it stopped raining for us once again and it turned out to be a glorious hike. Everyone was shedding coats at the end, and we were all warm. The sun tried to come out. The trail discovered last week turned out to be Road 412 (John, I was off by a whole lot on my road numbers). It was about 6/10 mile in length and quite muddy. After exiting this trail, we continued on up Dick's Fork to the "intersection" where the Fish Ladder road starts. This time we took the other road slightly west of that one, and it was nearly a mile long, recently rehabilitated with crushed stone and had evidence of truck travel. We assumed something must be at the end of it. Not so, just a wide spot to turn around and evidence of dirt dumping. There was a Prudential "For Sale" sign there. We hiked 4.7 miles.

Gillian, John, Mary, Curtis, Beth, Linda, Margaret, Jeremy, George, Jayne and Jim met on December 6 and headed for the intersection of the Foxglove Meadow and Dick's Fork Road. Again, the lack of rain on Mondays was evident. The meadow looked as it did in October, having been mowed down. We examined some of the power line access roads, cleaned up some litter, and found a promising road that we have apparently somehow overlooked. This is to be our destination next week. We managed to hike 4.00 miles according to my pedometer. On the way back down to highway 101 we spotted a gutted elk carcass.

On November 29, we revisited the old logging roads off Range Drive, continuing on to the new development at the golf course. We being John, Margaret, Mary, Gillian, Linda, Lyla, Curtis, George and Jim. We were unable to locate "Jim's former residence," and John decided it must be a mobile home. It did not rain.

Will it ever stop raining? The morning of November 22 dawned warmer than the previous stormy day, but the showers reappeared. Most of us were ready to give up, but looking at the forecast for the rest of the week, hardy souls Beth, Linda, Curtis, Margaret, John, Mary, Gillian and Jim set out for the forest service roads south and east of Eckman Lake. We should have gotten a clue as a guy in a four wheel drive unit tailgated us up the road. We parked at the intersection of roads 5360 and 1045. It actually stopped raining, once again, as we started up 5360. Gillian, recovering from a flu-like illness, had obviously regained her health, as she left the rest of us far behind. As we reached the road we have named "Gillian's Fork," she was exiting said road after exploring it. It is actually road 413. Mary, Margaret, Jim, Gillian and Curtis decided to explore 413 and we went further than we did the last time, up to a point that pretty much became unnavigable (is that a word?). We did discover a small meadow which from this day forth shall be known as "Margaret's Meadow. As we started back, we heard several gunshots. John, Linda and Beth had continued up road 5360, and as we returned to the point where we had split up, they, too were returning, having heard more gunshots. The hunters were apparently out, and the rain returned. A deer leaped across the road, seen only by Linda as the rest of us were looking down at the road. When we reached the cars, we had only covered about 3 miles, much to Mary's dismay. We need to explore road 413 when it gets a little dryer, as it is another beautiful place.

On Monday, November 15, Jim2 and Jane joined Gillian, John, Mary, Curtis, Beth, George, Jayne, Jim and Margaret for a return to the Gerdemann Botannical Preserve, in the misty rain. There are all manner of mushrooms and other fungi growing along the trail to the South Lincoln Water district reservoir. We found a trail beyond the reservoir that invites investigation once it becomes dryer. George, Gillian, Jayne and Jim visited Bob Keller's photo gallery--beautiful work.

The South Lincoln County Committe on Trails (SOLCCOT) will convene at the Waldport Community Center on November 16 at 2 PM. Presentations will be made by the Oregon Parks, City of Yachats, US Forest Service, Port of Alsea, City of Waldport, and the Oregon Coast Trail groups. Many of our members will be involved. Please attend if you are able.

Another stormy night on November 7-8 led to the usual clearing, for us, on Monday morning. Laimons and Vicki were newcomers to our group, joining John, Margaret, George, Mary, Beth, Lyla, Jane, Jeremy and Jim. It had been raining a lot, so we decided to go to Cape Perpetua and enjoy the cleared trails there. We parked at Captain Cook's bridge, and the spouting horn was wildly blowing, at times overwhelmed by the monster surf. We covered our usual entry to the Oregon Coast Trail, and instead of diverting to Neptune Beach, we continued on the Coast trail. Actually there was no Neptune Beach to walk on, as the tide and surf would have prevented it. We turned left at Cummins Creek trail and went a very short distance along the trail, admiring the river that Cummins Creek had become. There is new gravel on the Cummins Creek access road. The scenery was beautiful.

November blew in like a lion, with rain and high winds. Seven undaunted hikers met at Keady Wayside. I was ready to go to the gym and the treadmill, but the others' enthusiasm was too much. Off went Curtis, Mary, Beth, Margaret, John, Lyla and Jim to our favorite rain forest road alongside Big Creek off Blodgett Road. It turned out to be delightful in the shelter of the forest. Three little gnome statues have appeared at the reservoir area. We went down to the creek but didn't attempt a crossing. Then the other six hikers mistakenly took my advice to try to find the remnants of an old logging railbed that started near the quarry up Blodgett road. That's when the weather turned sour again and we got soaked, causing internal thoughts of our own sanity. The road that we found and hiked was not the one I was looking for, consulting topo maps after the fact. That road starts right at the quarry. Curtis's van got soaked inside and out.

"It was a dark and stormy night......." on October 24-25, and it continued on into the early morning. Six of us met at Keady Wayside in the rain. Gillian, smarter than most, opted to drive to Newport and walk inside in the shelter of the Recreation Center. George and Lyla, also smarter, elected to return home. Mary insisted that we could hike up Dick's Fork Road and be sheltered. Where have we heard that line before? She convinced Curtis and Jim to join her, and folks, you won't believe this, it again stopped raining. We parked right off 101 and started up the road. We turned into the Foxglove Meadow road after 1.35 miles and walked all the way in to the meadow. Several trees had been cut down alongside the road, and recently. Much to our surprise, when we reached the meadow, it had been completely cleared of the tall growth we had all seen before, making the irrigation sprinklers more obvious. Another mystery, and the sun came out. The pedometer showed 2.16 miles at the shed that housed the pumps. We retraced our steps and about 1/4 of a mile from the cars it began to sprinkle. We really didn't get wet at all, and the rest of you missed a good hike. How long will these Monday miracles last?

Lyla's daughter Shelly, and Jeremy, of the bakery group, joined Curtis, Diana, Linda, Margaret, John, Gillian, Mary, George, Jim and Lyla on October 18. Because of hunting season, we elected to return to the Beaver Creek Natural Area (no hunting) to explore trails that we had not experienced on previous visits. We decided to split into groups, one to stay low around the Beaver Creek Loop trail, and the rest of us to find an "easier" way to get up to Snaggy Point. We split up at the barn, Curtis, Margaret, Linda and Diana staying on the low path. The rest of us ventured up South Beaver Meadow Trail, through the meadow formerly identified as Fairway. The grass was very wet and our feet were soon soaked. We turned left at Antler Overlook Trail, right on Cougar Ridge Trail, left on Snaggy Ridge Loop and on to Snaggy Ridge where the view is breathtaking. We met a couple from Berkeley, CA who were enjoying the trails. After a brief rest we backtracked to Snaggy Point Trail for the downhill leg. John and Jeremy left us at North Fork Trail to join the others and inform them that we would miss our appointed rendezvous time. We intended to come down North Beaver Trail but somehow missed it and ended up on the Beaver Creek Loop. We visited the proposed kayak pullout site and returned to the parking area. Conclusion: There is NO easy way to get up to Snaggy Point. It was another lovely day and a very enjoyable hike.

On October 11, Diana rejoined us and George, Beth, Linda, Jim, Mary, Curtis, Margaret, Jayne, John and Lyla walked from Keady Wayside across the bridge, down the KOA trail to the beach, along the beach and streets of Bayshore to the jaws of the Alsea River. Jan and Gary opted to go fishing, and from what we witnessed, the fishing was good. Not a sign of rain after a very wet weekend. Can you believe this is 70 straight Mondays? On our return we talked to a couple who had caught about a 20 pound Coho Salmon. George has taken another group photo.

On October 4, Jim2 and Jane rejoined the group, and along with George, Margaret, John, Beth, Linda, Curtis, Mary, Gillian, Jan, Gary, Jayne and Jim, headed for the 804 trail starting at Perch Street in Yachats. We really need to get a bus, as the parking is getting to be a problem. George shared a high resolution print of last week's group photo with us. Very nice. The surf was really putting on a spectacular display and pelicans were exhibiting great flying skill. Once we got off the trail at the State Park, we morphed from the Waldport Walkers to the Waldport Ramblers, wandering around Yachats streets past such scenery as the water treatment plant. Curtis is enjoying the photo opportunities on these hikes, and there are many. George has provided another shot from today showing all 14 of us.

A special event, the dedication of the Beaver Creek State Natural Area, took place on Friday, 0ctober 1, and many of us were in attendance. To see what transpired, click here.CLICK

Dennis, a new hiker, joined Mary, John, Lyla, Jim, Beth, George, Margaret, Gary, Jan, Vern, Linda, Curtis, Susan2, and (welcome back) Jayne--wow! Fifteen hikers, a new record on this 27th of September. Since Vern is returning to California this week, we decided to reprise the "farewell to Vern" hike from last fall, parking at the Captain Cook's Chasm bridge at Cape Perpetua and walking the west-of-101 trails along the middens, through the tunnel under 101 and south along the Oregon Coast trail to Neptune Beach. It was beautiful, partly foggy, which caused those shafts of sunlight to pour down through the trees creating great photo opportunities. Curtis took a bunch of photos. George used the magic of Photoshop to provide this photo of all 15 of us, raising the question, who took it?

And another from Cook's Chasm bridge catching us walking.

More of George's photos from today are found on our page 2, as are a couple of great sunray shots from Curtis. CLICK

Since we have all been invited to the Beaver Creek State Natural Area Grand Opening ceremony on Friday, October 1, let's meet as usual at Keady Wayside at 9:45 and carpool to the Ona Beach parking area. After the ceremony is over, depending on how much of the "light refreshments" we have consumed, let's plan on hiking in the Natural Area, you know, Cougar Ridge.

September 20--the weather was predicted to be rain. Never happen to the Waldport Walkers. We met at Keady Wayside and were introduced to the newest member of Gary and Jan's family, a tiny pug puppy. Mary and Vern did not show up, so rumors were started. Curtis, Lyla, Linda, George, Margaret, John, Beth, Jim, Gillian, Jan and Gary headed for "the intersection" (that would be the FIRST intersection) on Eckman Lake Road. We parked at the same spot that we did last week, but took the "other" fork in the road, which maps show as road 5360. We rediscovered "Gillian's Fork" which we found back in January, but Jim and Gillian were the only two who explored it. It is another wonderland with a very strange tree covered with moss and a deep ravine to view. Maps show that to be road 413. The two of us finally caught the rest of the hikers on road 5360. This road is very well maintained and a fun place to hike. Linda and Jim started back before the others, after too many uphill climbs. The rest of the crew arrived in two groups, Curtis, Margaret, Beth, Gillian and Lyla, followed by John, George, Jan and Gary who had investigated another road. Another great day of over four miles.

If anyone got together last Thursday for a hike, please let me know about it.

re last Thursday...I did not get the word that there would not be a hike...so I arrived at 9:30 and waited and finally called John and was filled in on the cancellation...so I walked across the bridge and back by myself....got back to my car just as a light mist started falling....Cheers...George

Monday, September 13 found two new hikers joining the group, Curtis and Susan. With George, Mary, Gillian, Beth, Linda, Vern, Jim, Lyla, Margaret and John, we twelve boarded two vans for transport to "the fork in the road" above Eckman Lake. From there we ventured along the road to the fish ladder, one of our most beautiful venues. Whoever maintains that road, either Fish and Game or the Forest Service, had graded it and it was a very pleasant walk. When we reached the fish ladder we noted that the "throne," stump where we posed for photos in the past, had disappeared. A group photo below, thanks to George. Welcome to the group, Susan and Curtis.

Two more photos, thanks to George, on the second page.

On Labor Day, September 6, laborers Vern, Gillian, Beth, Gary, Jan, John, Margaret, Mary, George, Linda and Jim gathered at Keady Way. John suggested trying a network of trails which were shown on a topo map on the north side of the river off Bayview Road. We drove to the end of the road and hiked in past a house where two yellow labs barked at us. We continued on into uncharted territory and found a deer or bear hunting stand in a tree. It was getting creepy so we decided to exit the area. On our way back past the house, a young woman came out, with the labs and another dog to ask if we were with someone in the area and to warn us that bow hunting season is open and we were trespassing on private property. She was very diplomatic (outnumbered 11 to 1) and meanwhile the as usual friendly labs made friends with all of us. We returned to our vehicles, four of us in Gary's four wheel drive pickup and seven in George's van and headed for Legion road. We decided to drive further up Legion to start, and went through some serious rough puddles. When it became obvious that George's van was not right behind those of us in the truck, we reversed course and found the magnificent seven walking. George's sacraficial van had bottomed out in the puddles and he wisely decided to park it and walk. Everything turned out all right, we covered 4.1 miles, and survived the wilderness. God rest your soul, Bob Clapp, deceased September 4.

John's report from Thursday, September 2:

On this sunny, windless, perfect day Gillian, Mary, Beth, Margaret and John decided to cross Alsea Bay Bridge and explore the new route for the Oregon Coast Trail. We discussed where to place the wayfinders to help Coast Trail explorers find their way without having to hug Highway 101. The trail beside the KOA was in good condition, the beach was very passable, and we worked our way to the Bayshore Beach Club beach from where we retraced our way to Keady Wayside. The wayfinders will be placed in the near future.

Monday, August 30 found what the TV weather-guessers referred to as "showers" to be an absolute downpour at meeting time. Undaunted, intrepid hikers Margaret, Mary, Lyla, Jan, Gary, John, Vern and Jim set off for Smelt Sands State Park and the 804 Trail. I still find it hard to believe, but when we got out of the cars, the rain stopped, once again. Soon after we started north on the 804, pointing out to Vern all of the interesting stuff like the weird buildings and the controversial arbor, whales were spotted spouting not far off shore. We hiked north to the beginning of the beach, reversed course and came back to the Adobe. On the northbound path, Lyla turned an ankle and decided to take care of it and return to the cars. Southbound, we found her resting on a bench, and Jan and Gary took her back to town. We hope you will heal fast, Lyla. Continuing south on the (well marked, by John) 804, now part of the Oregon Coast Trail, we went into the Yachats wetlands trail and through a short section of forest before returning to Smelt Sands. A very interesting hike.

John's report from Thursday:

As planned, our Thursday Village Walk started with the cleanup of the garbage which we had discovered last week in the forest just east of the Waldport Forest Service Ranger Station. Beth, Lyla, Gillian, Mary, Margaret and John hiked from the Ranger Station armed with trash bags and rubber gloves provided by the Forest Service. After cleaning up the mess and depositing the bags in a dumpster, we explored a trail just south of the Ranger Station. We found ourselves at the end of Forest Park drive, worked our way west to Norwood Drive, and discovered an abandoned trail into the forest. We found this trail overgrown and in need of clearing, returned to Norwood Drive and through the forest back to the Ranger Station. By mutual consent we extended our hike by walking to Governor Patterson State Park, exploring the forest loop, and returning to the Ranger Station. A very satisfactory hike with a meaningful public service component.

Monday, August 23, we were joined by new hikers Jim2 and Jane2, so designated because we have another Jim and another Jane (just my convoluted thinking). Jim and Jane proved to be veteran hikers, having no problems keeping up with the rest of us, and actually probably could lead us. Vern returned to the group, and John, George, Jim, Gary (all guys listed first, Chauvinist pig!) and Margaret, Mary, Linda, Jan, and Gillian ventured back to the Oregon State Park at Beaver Creek. We agreed to avoid the mountain climb to Craggy Point, and stayed on the perimeter road for about two miles, and returned to the starting point. We were impressed with how much work the Rangers have done since our last visit (Way to go, Mike and Dennis!), mowing meadows, and defining the road, placing grass in the tire tracks and marking the trails, thankfully re-naming some as all were once called Cougar Ridge. We definitely have to return to this place and investigate the many trails leading up the hills.

John's report from August 19th:

On Thursday, Lyla, Gillian, Mary, Margaret and John hiked a route suggested by Gillian. We walked south on the beach, watched the pigeon guillemots on the bay and saw their nest burrows in the sandstone cliff near Yaquina John Point. We left the beach via a public access just north of Bunker Creek, crossed the highway, walked through the St. Luke's Episcopal Church grounds and along the old railroad right-of-way to the Waldport Forest Service Ranger Station. From there we took the forest trail where we found a trashy campsite which we decided to clean up on our village walk next Thursday. We ascended to Norwood Drive and via a circuitous route worked our way back to Keady Wayside. A very pleasant one-hour hike.

On Monday, August 16, Gillian, Lyla, Linda, Beth, Mary, Jane, Margaret, John, George and Jim met at Keady wayside and proceeded to the dump at Dahl Disposal Service, the site of a newly constructed microwave relay tower and started off on the old logging roads which lie between Crestline on the east, Highway 101 on the west, Dahl's site on the south and Range Drive on the north. There are many of them and they form quite a maze where one could easily get lost. We found the old tower (Jim's former residence) which had not fallen down as suspected, it was concealed from view by new growth. There were a lot of deer and a few cougar tracks along the roads. Just about four miles and 1 1/2 hours later, we were finished. Photo by George of the old tower and all of us.

A report from Mary on the Thursday, August 12 hike:

On Thursday, August 12, Jane, John, Mary, Lyla and her grandson Ross from the Portland area drove up Waldport Heights Road and hiked along the water line trails to the reservoir. We stopped to admire the view of the Alsea River before setting out on our one-hour trek. As usual, our three horse friends came to greet us before returning to frolic in their field. We hope Ross will return to accompany us again; from his high school environmental science class, he has a wealth of information to share on that subject.

On Monday, August 9, Sharron brought a visitor, Whitney, who traveled from Las Vegas to hike with George, Mary, Diana, Jane, Gary, Jan, Beth, Jim, Gillian, Virgil and Barbara. As usual we couldn't decide where to go, but finally settled on what the ladies say has become our "signature hike," the beautiful rain forest alongside Big Creek off Blodgett Road. As we passed the waterfall, the conversation once again went to "When are we going to bring a rope and descend down to the falls?" We did find a slight diversion just off the beaten path. Returning from the reservoir, we ventured down the power line road to Big Creek, where Sharron, Whitney and Diana crossed the creek and started up the steep hill on the other side. The rest of us returned to the parking area. From there, George, Beth, Mary, Gillian and Jim went further up Blodgett Road, while Virgil, Barbara, Jan, Gary, and Jane returned to Keady Wayside. Once again we had split into groups. See what you missed, John and Margaret? Beth brought a book of flowers and we were able to identify a few including the little Centauri.

Here is John's report from the hike on Thursday, August 5th:

Gilly, Susan, Jane, Lyla, Margaret and John walked the beach from Keady Wayside, under the bridge, over the ghost shrimp and clam beds to Robinson Park at the Port of Alsea. We viewed the kyak and crabbing docks and then made our way south along Lint Slough. We again explored the possible route for a new trail along the west bank of the slough. This time we didn't lose anyone in the forest! We then walked back to Keady Wayside via the ballfields.

Two new hikers, Virgil and Barbara, joined Gary, Jan, George, Mary, Gillian, John, Margaret, Jim, Jane and Sharron for our August 2nd journey to Seal Rock. Starting at George's house and beautiful yard, we hiked to Fern Ridge Cemetary with the intention of connecting to the Legion Road route taken on July 26. It turned out to be quite an uphill climb. The cemetary is located 400 feet above sea level. After touring the cemetary and a few short power line access roads, we returned to George's. I have attached a map showing where we were last week, and today, both shaded in orange. The gap between the two is what remains for us to find. Barbara is a real trouper, hiking four miles with a broken toe.

John's report from the Thursday hike on July 29 follows: With the Woodland Corridor Trail now funded and construction imminent we decided to explore future access points to the new trail from Range and Crestline Drives. Linda, Jane, Gillian, Margaret and John explored the area starting at the future Park Street Trailhead. We found several options for future trail extensions to Double Eagle, Masters, Forest park and Crestline Drive. We also did a lot of litter collection, the most notable item being a large black bra (unoccupied1). It was a very enjoyable and productive hike of just under an hour.

Our group was joined by JoAnn, a friend of Gillian's, who traveled all the way from Minnesota to participate in the July 26 hike, along with Jane, Jim, Beth, Linda, George, Margaret, John, Mary, Gillian and Sharron. We drove up Legion Road to the place where we started there back in April. What a difference. It was much drier than the last time, though the one "lake" still had water in it. A mower/trimmer has been up there cutting away the brush (and everything else in its way) on both sides. We thought it might be possible to reach Fern Ridge cemetary. Mary, Sharron, Gillian and JoAnn got pretty far ahead of the rest of us, and in our "debriefing" session we figured they were just about a mile short of the cemetary. In the future we plan to start at the cemetary and go south, probably meeting the place we reversed course today. The four speeders walked about five miles, and the rest of us compiled 4.5. John probably did about seven, running back and forth between the two groups. This is another one of those places that might be fun to park cars at both ends and hike the entire route one way. The only down item was that the mosquitoes were out in force.

Here is John's report from the Thursday hike on July 22:

Our hike on Thursday was delightful. On a dry sunny morning Margaret, Linda and I hiked the Giant Spruce Trail at Cape Perpetua, sidetracking to a small hidden beach on Cape Creek. This is a swimming hole we have used in the past when camping at the Cape.

On July 19, Jim suggested the rain forest-like road 417, off the Eckman Lake road, to the fish ladder, which we originally found in May. Jane, John, Margaret, Mary, Gillian, Linda, Sharron and Jim drove to one of the "intersections" of the forest roads to make it a little shorter. It still turned out to be five miles, but that last mile to the fish ladder is a truly beautiful area, with the sound of Dick's Fork creek and the sights of moss growing on the trees and a proliferation of foxgloves and other flora. You all seemed to enjoy the photo last week of all of us just sitting around, so we staged another at the fish ladder, seen below. Many suggestions for next week were discussed with no firm decision made. Among them were the long hike from Carl Washburn Park to Heceta Head, or part of it, the near vertical trail up to the viewpoint at Cape Perpetua. On Thursday the group will venture to Cape Perpetua for the trail to the Giant Spruce.

More photos will be found on the second page, link below.

A report from Margaret on the Thursday, July 15 hike

Thursday was a delightful day for hiking the Cummins Creek Trail. We had one new hiker (Jane MacMillan), who joined Sharron, Diana, Mary, Beth and Margaret for the walk through the woods. See you tomorrow

Ten of us gathered on Monday, July 12. Mary suggested the Gerdemann Botanical Preserve in Yachats, so Jim, Vern, John, George, Margaret, Mary, Diana, Sharron, Beth and Gillian headed out. I had missed this the first time and it is a truly pretty area and a great hike. We did find a very nice picnic area, and as you can see from the photo below, we don't really hike, we just sit around and talk. From there we made it to the Yachats reservoir and around some of the streets, Starr Creek and others. The little stream that runs along the garden is neat and the rhodies are impressive, as were the "wild lilacs?" we found. Sharron gathered a whole bouquet. Everyone enjoyed this one, and thank you Mary for suggesting it.

Many more photos from this hike are on the second page,

Click here to see them

Here is John's report from the second Thursday hike on July 8.

We gathered at Keady Wayside in the chilly wind and fog for our Thursday Village Walk. After a short drive to Range Drive we hiked in the forest south of Range Drive, well sheltered from the wind. We were glad to have Jan and Gary back with us, which with Gilly, Beth, Mary, Margaret and John made us a merry band of seven. After circling through the forest past many elk and deer tracks, we emerged at the south perimeter of the golf course, headed north and re-entered the forest to return to our staging area. It was a very pleasant and dry 55-minute walk.

Monday, July 5, when the holiday was celebrated, found new hikers Doyle and Barbara joining John, Margaret, Sharron, Jane, Jim, George, Mary and Diana for an attempt to find all the neat paths north of Alsea Highlands. We drove to the intersection of Bayview Drive and 101 and started out. After passing the Cell Tower we encountered construction equipment clearing lots, and a new road which had been cut in since our last trip there. The area has basically been destroyed for hiking. We walked around on what remaining trails were to be found, most ending in dead ends. I refer to it as being lost. We decided to go to the north wayside of the bridge and we walked down the KOA trail to the beach. Several hikers left us, going back across the bridge. This part is now referred to as "wandering aimlessly," but we did do a lot of beach cleanup from the fireworks crowd, picking up fireworks remnants, beer bottles and cans, and other debris.

Here is a report from John concerning the first Thursday walk. Very encouraging!

Hello Jim, As you saw we had a good turnout, 10 walkers. They were: Bill, Maggie, Valerie, Paul, Beth, Monika, Lyla, Jane, Margaret and me. We walked up the Woodland Corridor Trail, and when we got to the steep (and muddy) section, Paul and I went ahead with one end of a long rope which I had brought along. When we reached the top of the steep section we stood together anchoring the rope, while the other eight pulled themselves up. It worked well. When we reached the gate at Park Street a neighbor came down to us to warn us about two bears which were regularly raiding his garbage and garden. We thanked him and nonchalantly proceeded on our walk, returning via Norwood Drive, past the Pacific View mirror, and down to Starr Street. A very successful hike of just under an hour. Sorry you missed it. Have a great weekend. John.

I guess we are getting notorious. Four new members arrived at Keady Wayside on June 28. We welcomed George, Monica, Heather and Betsy. Lyla, Diana, Jane, Mary, Gillian, Sharron, John, Margaret, Jim, Beth combined with our newcomers totalled fourteen, our largest group so far. With the recent full moon and subsequent very high and very low tides, John suggested we try the beach again, as the tide was -1.2 at 8:46. We started at Keady and walked the beach around Yaquina John Point to Gov. Patterson Park, where we went ashore. Now, the speeders, Mary, Sharron and Gillian apparently did not hear John's directions to leave the beach. They were so far ahead of everyone else that they missed the turn. I think they walked to Yachats. The rest of us hiked the short trails around Patterson Park, then walked Highway 101 to Range Drive (John checked his mail as we passed by the Alicia Lane mailbox.) We cut across the road to the storage place, arriving at the Forest Service Ranger station, where we embarked on the hidden trail up to Norwood Heights. Found garbage dumped on that trail. People are senseless. We walked around the Pacific View Drive and back to Keady. Our total was just over 3.5 miles. George took a photo of us at the Pacific View mirror. I'm looking forward to posting it here. Good group. Join John for the SECOND DAY hike on Thursday, at Keady Wayside. It will be a short hike in town, not to last more than one hour.

We are getting fewer suggestions for where to hike. Today, June 21, we finally decided on Cummins Creek at Cape Perpetua. Jane, Linda, Jim, Mary, Gillian, Beth, Sharron and Bill found the trail to be quite muddy. It must have rained a lot more down at the cape than in Waldport. We did not attempt the loop trail which is so steep. On the way back down the trail Gillian, Bill and Jim found the trail to the stream which we visited last summer and went part way down, but it turned out to be longer than anticipated and we thought the rest of the folks might be worried about us, so we returned to the parking place. It must be tourist season as we encountered at least eight other hikers on the trail.

It has been brought to our attention that we may hike too far and over terrain that some of our potential members may not wish to do. What do you think about a second day, Thursday, hiking "Village Walks" in town for no longer than an hour? Please give me some feedback at MAIL ME.

Two new hikers joined us on Flag Day, June 14 for a highly anticipated visit to the Foxglove Meadow. Trisha, Diana's sister, visiting from Texas, and Jane joined Bill, Maggie (2), Mary, Gillian, Diana, John, Sharron, Lyla and Jim. Some of our members had other commitments and wanted to trek a little less than normal, so we drove up Dick's Fork road to the gate leading to the Foxglove Meadow and hiked in. What a disappointment, as there were perhaps 10 foxgloves sighted. We then went further up Dick's Fork and took a forest service road that we thought we had hiked before. It came out in a meadow where a Southwest Lincoln County Water District facility was located, and this was new to us. We continued on and came to another meadow under the power lines, and a little further on came to another road which exhibited civilization. A house and a real estate sale sign were visible. Mary, Bill and Maggie went on further, and I await a report from them. John, Sharon, Diana, Trisha and Jim returned to the starting point. New territory discovered today.

Dylan McDowell sent me the photos that he took on the day he interviewed us. Thank you, Dylan, for all of the publicity you provided us in the South Lincoln County News and the Newport News-Times. Here is the one at the gazebo on our meeting site, Keady Wayside.

Gary, John, Margaret, Jan, Jim, Vern, Gillian and Shirley. Photo by Dylan McDowell.

The other photos I have put on the second, photo album page.

On Monday, June 7, the occasion of our 52nd hike, four new members, Bill, Diana, Lila and Sharron joined Maggie (2), Gillian, Mary, Beth, Penny, John, Linda and Jim. Again it had been raining all day Sunday, and we wanted to avoid mud if possible. We decided to return to Waldport Heights and revisit the water line and power line access roads on the east side of Lint Slough. The trail had accumulated quite a bit of growth since the last time we ventured out here (Perhaps it has been raining, ya think?). We took our new members to the overlook for the view of the Alsea River, then ventured along the access roads, a little beyond the green water tank. We were still unable to find the large building which is visible from the road to Dahl Disposal. This is a mystery. We did see our friendly horses including the miniature, which had a friend this time, an eagle, and a garter snake. One whole year has passed by. This was our largest group, twelve. We missed you Margaret and hope you are recovering.

May 31, Memorial Day, dawned misty. Mary, John, Margaret, Beth and Jim met at Keady Wayside. Jim proposed hiking up Cedar Street to Crestline, and on to the small Cemetary at the corner of Salmon St. and Crestline, to plant a couple of small flags in honor of our fallen veterans. All of us had seen Gillian's car parked near the bakery, so we decided to walk past there and harrass her. She decided to join us and the six of us hiked to the cemetary. Evidently a veteran's organization beat us to it, as there were flags on the graves of all veterans interred there. From the cemetary we backtracked on Crestline and took it all the way to Lint Slough, and down Mill Street to the port, where we got on the beach. A minus .9 tide occurred at 0948, and it was almost possible to walk across the bay. Several folks were digging clams, and John gave us a lesson in identifying clam locations. I apologize for taking us all on so much pavement, but the beach section made up for it, I hope. After last week on the beach I realized how much I miss hiking on the beach. We are blessed with so much of it here. Next week we will have been at this madness for an entire year.

On the occasion of our FIFTIETH hike, on May 24, we were interviewed by Dylan, a reporter for the South Lincoln County News and a volunteer at the Oregon Coast Aquarium in Newport. John had interesting news of a series of seal, whale and other sea creature appearances at Beachside State Park, so we elected to go with John to investigate these creatures. Dylan joined John, Margaret, Gary, Jan, Shirley, Gillian, Mary, Vern and Jim and we headed for Beachside. The first creature we came upon was a young Fur Seal (sea lion), which was close to death on the beach. John, wearing his animal protection hat, had placed signs warning people to leave the creatures alone. The Grey Whale was quite obvious due to its size, further north on the beach. It, too was apparently young, and deceased. We then located a rare and live Elephant Seal, much further north on the coast than normally found. It had moulted and John explained that they come ashore, do not eat, moult, and recover before returning to the sea. There was a report of an "eel" which we found, and it turned out to be a Sturgeon. We then hiked south to Big Creek and back to the entrance of the park, picking up trash enroute. Almost everyone had business to attend to, so we broke up. We had hiked slightly less than three miles, so of course Mary wanted to continue. Vern, Jim and Gillian have not yet learned to avoid following Mary, so the four of us hiked up Dick's Fork road, successfully locating the trail that veers off to the left and ends up on Wakonda Beach road. We kept following Mary's promise of a grand vista, which we finally found, a clear cut with trash and stacked tree branches. Breathtaking. It did get us to five miles, though. Next week we are going to give Mary a one half hour head start. Thanks to Gary and Jan for the photo of the elephant seal below.

For once, on Monday, May 17, the predicted rain was nowhere in sight. A new hiker, our second Maggie, joined Linda, Beth, Mary, Gillian, Jan, Margaret, Gary, John, Vern and Jim for a trek back to the new Oregon State Parks site off Beaver Creek Road. We're going to have to obtain a bus for transportation soon. For some insane reason, we decided to start off by climbing the mountain to Snaggy Point. (See map below). After resting for a few minutes and enjoying the view from "the top," we started back down. Gillian found another UP road which led to a meadow, and backtracking from there we finally found the elusive Canyon Loop trail and walked it. It is sorely in need of some clearing, and the meadows are in need of mowing. Are you reading this, Mike? Back down the hill, where another insane thought made us hike up the road in search of the bridge and proposed kayak launch site. More up and down. Many critter tracks, including cougar, deer, elk, dog, raccoon, and bear. We deposited some human tracks in the mix. When we got back to the entry gate, my pedometer read 5.55 miles and we were beat. Next week will mark our FIFTIETH hike. By the way, the photo below has nothing to do with today, but shows the terrain I hiked over at the Sumpter Valley railway last Saturday. Those piles of rocks are gold dredge tailings and are murder to walk on.

On Monday, May 10, Gillian had a dental appointment and requested that we visit our favorite little rain forest road off Blodgett Road, so we did, we being Vern, Linda, Beth, Jim, Gillian, Mary, John and Margaret. On the way up Blodgett a deer crossed the road in front of us and put on a leaping display in the forest. The road was muddy, as it poured last night, but we remained dry. The falls were quite visible and Big Creek was running furiously. Margaret found a bottle, and as we are prone to do, she picked it up to dispose of it, only to find one deceased mouse in it. The bottle at one time contained "211 Steel somethingorother" beer, wow 8.1% alcohol. Either that mouse got in there and got too fat to get out, or he got drunk and died happy. We hiked to the reservoir and back, and Gillian left for her appointment. The rest of us continued up Blodgett Road for quite a while and my pedometer recorded about 4 1/2 miles total. Would you believe, (and this is getting creepy) that as we turned onto Highway 101 headed for Waldport, it began to rain? Once again we beat the weather.

Monday, May 3 was stormy. That didn't stop Vern, Mary, John, Margaret, Beth, Jim, Gillian and Linda from hiking. Mary suggested inland along Eckman Lake road. Some of us were dubious, but this turned out to be an excellent choice, free from wind and rain, and along a road which we had done before, but had not gone as far due to Beth's boot failure, remember? This road contained some real beauty, alongside a swift stream, which after the fact map reading disclosed to be Dick's Fork, of all things. It came to a dead end where we found what appears to be a fish ladder in a cleared meadow. Small waterfalls were seen along the way and a few side roads which warrant future investigation. One pedometer showed a total of 5.47 miles, which may be a distance record for us.

Monday, April 26 was supposed to be nice in the morning, so John, Margaret, Gary, Jan, Vern, Mary, Beth, Jim, Gillian and Linda met at the dock and boat launch area. We tried to convince Maggie to join us. We started for the beach but the cold wind turned us around. We hiked around town, Mill Street, Lint Slough, Crestline, Cedar, Starr, partway up the Woodland Corridor, Keady wayside, the beach, where the wind had died down, and back to the streets again. John showed us where the City planned to install bridges for the Woodland trail. We are looking forward to the development of this, our first, finding for the City of Waldport trail map. It started to rain as our hike ended.

On Monday, April 19, Jim's daughter Laurie joined John, Margaret, Mary, Vern, Beth, Jim and Penny for a repeat of our earlier hike starting at Cook's Chasm bridge, along the paved trails on the sea side, under highway 101 to the Oregon Coast Trail, to Neptune beach. We were sprinkled upon, but it was a great day for a hike and Laurie got to see quite a variety of our scenic area, forest, beach, Cape Perpetua, the Pacific surf, mussels, starfish, driftwood, creeks, and mainly the cameraderie of our hikers.

The Group

John pointing out scenery of interest

More photos have been added to the second page .

Monday, April 12. The return of Vern. Jan rejoined the Clan (Gary, too)--welcome back. Along with Linda, Beth, Gillian, Mary, John, Margaret, Penny and Jim, all set out for Fox Creek, north of Waldport. We eleven drove up Fox Creek road and found nothing but private driveways, so headed south for Legion Road. About a mile up Legion we parked and hiked along the road and along some of the side trails, one of which leads to "the deck" and a ravine of wild rhododendrons, not yet in bloom. Legion road could be renamed "Minnesota," as it appeared to be the "land of lakes," many of which we had to skirt around carefully. Among other things we found a thoroughly cleaned elk skeleton. After returning to the cars we hiked along the power line road south until we encountered barking dogs, so turned around. The weather was beautiful once again.

Monday, April 5, the day after Easter. Coastal weather has been beastly and this morning was no exception. Our intelligent members, John and Margaret, opted for indoor gym activity instead of hiking, as did Gillian, Vern, Jan, Gary and Linda. On the other hand, Beth, Penny and Jim followed Mary and travelled to Dick's Fork road, "to hike in the shelter of the forest." We aren't going to fall for that line again, are we? What's a little hail, rain, wind and lightning/thunder among us intrepid hikers? We hiked for an hour and covered about 3 1/4 miles in very interesting conditions. When we returned to Keady Wayside, the sun came out, the wind died down and it was quite pleasant. As you all know, this was not to last very long. I cannot believe how much hail falls on this coastal location. We had decent weather all winter, and now that spring is here it's getting tough.

The weather looked "iffy" on Monday, March 29, but that did not stop Penny, Mary, Beth, Linda, Margaret, John and Jim from heading to the Cummins Creek trail at Cape Perpetua. One who shall not be named (apology to J.K. Rowling) drove by at Keady Wayside and wimped out. I promised I will not insult anyone again in this blog. The trail was pretty muddy at the bottom. Who would have guessed, after a week of rain and an all night torrent? It actually was quite navigable, and it is obviously the season for Trillium to bloom. They were everywhere. John and Jim diverted off the main path to the Cummins Creek Loop, which is quite a climb. We all met on the return trip at the trail junction, and soon after we were safe and dry in our cars, the rain really came down. Again, our timing was perfect and we stayed dry.

Joined by a new member, Linda, John, Jim, Beth, Gillian, Mary and Penny started out at Keady Wayside and walked the beach to Patterson Park, from there across 101 to Seabrook Lane, through the old logging roads to Range Drive, down Forest Park into Norwood Heights, and down the trail to the Forest Ranger center, across 101 again, down to the beach and return to Keady. We missed you, Margaret. Went past John and Margaret's house, Penny's house, greeted the Howells passing their house. Gillian found the largest piece of styrofoam we had ever seen and insisted on removing it from the beach. Wasn't the great beach cleanup last Saturday? Some things were missed. Jim and Beth were glad they had the yellow raincoats on as we were rained on for part of the trip. It was quite interesting.

John, Margaret, Jim, Penny, Mary, Beth and Gillian ventured to Waldport Heights, after ruling out our choice of Drift Creek. March 15, the Ides of March, was once again dry for our hike. We investigated the road which was put in for the clear-cutting of the forest in the last few years. It turned out to be very steep. We also ruled out the trip down to Lint Slough and kept hiking to the south, finding a miniature horse in a yard, and some full sized horses which seemed to be interested in us. Upon returning to our parking area, a Rhodesian Ridgeback ran to us, but he turned out to be pretty friendly for a lion hunter. John identified him for us.

On Monday, March 8 we journeyed a little over 4 miles out Bayview Drive to the trails we last walked in November. This time we "turned right" up the hill into previously unexplored territory. There was a lot of up and down hill, many little streams, not too much mud, and we seemed to be going pretty much west. Hikers were John, Margaret, Gary, Jan, Penny, Mary, Beth and Jim. Next week we will venture further out Bayview to the Drift Creek bridge and go from there.

How long will this Monday weather continue? March 1 arrived like a lamb, and Gary, Jan, John, Margaret, Jim, Mary, Gillian and Beth couldn't decide where to go. We finally decided on Gillian's suggestion from last week and drove up Dick's Fork road to the junction of the foxglove meadow road. We hiked to the meadow, and foxgloves were evident, in their infancy state. The network of sprinklers was obvious, and the building door was unlocked. We checked it and it contains valves, probably to operate the sprinklers. We returned to the main road after checking one power line road. At this point it became a "wandering aimlessly" adventure, and we found some previously missed power line roads. We picked up a lot of trash and saw a lot of those slow moving salamanders. Next week we will go out Bayview Drive north of the river and revisit trails discovered last Fall, and hopefully find some new ones.

The Sunday parish bulletin made no mention of last week's adventure. Yet again the weather was wonderful for our Monday, February 22 hike. The Mares had more visiting family members, and son Carl, daughter-in-law Lori and grandson Peter joined their John and Margaret, accompanied by Mary, Gillian, Sue and Jim. We thought that our visitors might enjoy the portion of the Oregon Coast trail from the visitor center at Cape Perpetua south to Gwynn Creek. (Vern's Trail). Off we went, parking at Captain Cook's Chasm bridge. We crossed highway 101 using the tunnel and walked the Oregon Trail. We detoured to Neptune Beach, which was quite pristine. John found a blue bucket and we picked up trash (not much to be found), leaving the beach even more pristine than we found it. We then retraced our steps to the cars, and four of us continued to the tide pools to complete our target four miles. Mary's new pedometer and Jim's agreed with each other almost exactly. Gillian suggested Dick's Fork with a side trip to the foxglove meadow for next week.

Our Monday weather continued to cooperate on February 15. John and Margaret had family visitors, son Andre, daughter-in-law Teresa, and their three children. John and Margaret wanted the family to experience part of the new State of Oregon Beaver Creek Park, so the dozen of us, including Mary, Gillian, Beth, Sue and Jim, set off for the park. We opted to begin at the very steep hill leading to Snaggy Point. (Elevation about 360 feet). It was a tough climb, but well worth it for the view from the top. Another lady and her dog were up there when we arrived. We then backtracked to the origin of the Canyon Loop trail, where all of the Mare family left to return to various commitments. The remaining five of us hiked down what we thought was Canyon Loop, but it came to a dead end. Back to the top, we started down one of the other trails. If you look at the map below, I have outlined in yellow where I think we ended up going, to Bear Meadow and then back to the main road and all the way around the road counterclockwise, including the short stretch of private property. The road was very muddy, but it was an invigorating hike, covering 4.92 miles according to my pedometer. I hope Gillian can get the mud out of her car. The couple with the dog we met when nearly finished are members of my church. No doubt they are wondering about me, travelling with four women. I look forward to Sunday's parish bulletin.

On another wonderful weather day, February 8, Jan, Gary, John, Margaret, Mary, Jim, Gillian, Beth and Sue ventured back to Blodgett Road, determined to find the elusive road to "the top." This time we succeeded in finding the seldom used trail to the peak, but sadly found debris from hunters there on the peak, and no real good view from there due to the forestation. The forest service road had been recently plowed and had evidence of quite a water flow from the January rains. John gave us a report of his meeting in Salem concerning the trails in the state. Waxing philosophically, I would just like to say that this group is very compatible and congenial, we have been blessed with great weather, and it is just a very enjoyable experience to look forward to on Mondays. Thank you all for your comeraderie.

Monday, February 1, found Mary, John, Margaret, Jan, Gary, Beth and Jim braving threatening weather. Gillian stopped by to wish us well, then departed for a warm indoor track in Newport. The weather wasn't that bad, and we checked out the "missing link" in the Oregon Coast trail between the KOA campgrounds and the Bayshore Beach Club. Sue also drove by and wished us well. John managed to find a "high tide" return after we found the "low tide" route along the beach on the north side of Alsea Bay. He can now present this to the Oregon Coast trail folks, and we have closure on the long awaited checkout of this trail.

On Monday, January 25, we met at Keady as usual. After discussing options, we decided to go across the river and hike north of Alsea Highlands. Wow, we discovered new trails and many of them. We found the tall cell phone tower, approaching it from the wrong side during the "unnecessary" portion of the hike. This portion took John, Margaret, Gary, Jan, Mary, Gillian, Sue, Beth and Jim through some serious blackberry bushes. Sue and Jan were the responsible leaders. It was nice to find new territory. Beth and Jim expressed a desire to explore the trail to the back of Heceta Head lighthouse next week, but on our return, the veteran hikers decided that this would not be a good idea during the winter. We are open to suggestions for next week.

Don't forget the Trails meeting at Waldport City Hall next Tuesday at 2 PM.

Jan, Gary, John, Margaret, Beth, Mary, Gillian and Jim ventured back to Eckman Lake on Monday, January 18, taking the "other" fork in the road, I think road 5860. Beth was sporting a new pair of hiking boots which served her well on this trip. She did not need to resort to her package of repair supplies which she carried along. We explored some side trails leading to a hunter's camp strewn with animal parts and shotgun shells. Further up the road, Gillian led us up what will forever be known as "Gillian's Fork," which turned out to be a beautiful forest trail. It did not rain a drop on us once again. How long can this go on? Gary, Jan, Jim and Gillian owe an apology to Mary for not appearing at the "farmers market" on Keady Wayside. We drove on up the road to see how far it might be to the "top," which we never found. Upon our late return to Keady, Jim discovered where all of those pelicans are hiding, on the rockpile at the south side of the bridge, west. See the other page.

Monday, January 11. When we arrived at our meeting spot, Keady Wayside, several pelicans were present diving for their lunch. They should have migrated by now but apparently have found plentiful food here in Alsea Bay. We decided to return to the roads east of Eckman Lake, which we did, but parked far short of where we had intended to start out. We ended up at the same spot where we terminated last week's hike, though arriving from the opposite direction. Beth suffered a "double boot failure," and no one had any duct tape. Scraps of weedwhacker string and trail marking tape were used to patch Beth's boots for the return to the parking spot. Jan took the above group portrait. Participants were John, Margaret, Jan, Gary, Gillian, Jim, Mary and Beth. Next week the plan is to return to this venue, but drive further in and examine a different fork in the road. John, the topo map shows this fork going to Desolation Saddle. Does that jive with your earlier bike adventures there? There are two more of Jan's photos on the other page, click on the link. Boot repair and a big stump.

Monday, January 4, brought light rain which later turned to heavy stuff. We abandoned John's original plan to investigate the "missing link" in the Oregon Coast trail between the KOA and Bayshore Beach Club. John, Margaret, Mary, Gillian, Beth and Jim revisited Dick's Fork road. This was our first hike of the new year 2010, and the 30th since we started. When I got home, my wife inquired "Are you crazy?" I guess we are.

On Monday, December 28, Waldport Walkers Jan, Gary, Margaret, John, Beth, Gillian and Mary met for our final hike of 2009. At John and Margaret's suggestion, we explored the Gerdemann Botanical Preserve, a protected conservation area located on private property in north Yachats. The forest trails are marked by several broadwalks and small bridges along a creek and through wetlands. A truly idyllic spot. We ventured on to some water district trails along Starr Creek and concluded our trek by crossing 101 to the 804 trail. We were blessed with a bright and sunny day. HAPPY NEW YEAR, EVERYONE! Thanks to Mary.

On Monday, December 21, John, Margaret, Beth and Mary drove to Blodgett Road where we revisited Our waterfall on the road to the reservoir. We were amazed at the force of the creek and the roar of the waterfall. Obviously, winter has arrived. The path was saturated and the rain continued to fall; however, we were comfortable out of the wind. There were no warnings from hunters this time. We tentatively plan to drive up Dick's Fork Road next Monday (across from the red house) and hike along the forest road. Thanks to Mary for this report.

On Monday, December 14, it was a little warmer than it had been, though the forecast was not good. As we met at Keady Wayside it began to sprinkle. John suggested that we investigate the trails to the west of Highway 101 at Cape Perpetua. Beth, a new member, joined Mary, Gillian, John, Margaret, Gary, Jan and Jim. Some of us had been on short sections of these trails in the past, but were amazed at how many and how good they really are. Most have been paved for wheelchair access. The spouting horn at Captain Cook's Chasm was really spectacular, with an 8.7 foot high tide and lots of surf. Pelicans and sea lions were seen heading south. We saw some Killdeer, too. This entire area is truly beautiful. John regularly conducts tours along these trails as a volunteer at the Cape Perpetua Visitors Center, and graciously explained the history of the shell middens and the trails. Next week we will return to Blodgett Road, meeting at Keady Wayside as usual. Jim will be enroute to Christmas with the family in CA and AZ. Someone please take notes for inclusion here. All of you have a Merry Christmas.

Monday, December 7 (Remember Pearl Harbor!) found us in the midst of one of those pesky freezing east wind situations, so most folks decided not to participate in the hike. It was 27 degrees a bit earlier. Gillian, who chose this weeks site, cruised by to bid us good hiking, on her way home. John, Jim, Margaret and Mary then decided to repeat the very early summer hike along the water and power line access roads leading from Waldport Heights. This is really a very nice hike, but in the winter it proved to be different. We trudged along "crunchy" terrain, frozen, but not slippery. Those of you who participated in the summer one, where we had to cut our way through the brush at the bottom of the power line trail, will be interested to learn, as we were, that there is now a road down through there. Also, the dam, which we never really saw but crossed over, has been removed, and when we reached the bottom of the trail there was a flowing waterway about 20 feet across. We did not savor swimming, so returned up the hill and just had a peak at a few other trails that lead to Peterson Park, or maybe Grandma's Feed store. Jan, we could not find the Eagle tree, but the view across the slough was excellent, out to sea under blue sky. Those pesky ankle grabbers struck once again.

Monday, November 30, six of us headed for Cummins Creek Trail at Cape Perpetua. Reviewing our list of hikes, it's hard to believe that, as a group, we had not done this one, though many of us had, prior to the organization of the Waldport Walkers. It's a great trail. John, Margaret, Gillian, Mary, Jim and our new member Penny managed to get in a little over 5 miles. This being our 25th hike, we must have passed the 100 mile mark. Party time! Gillian suggested a return to the Oregon State Park land at Beaver Creek for next week. If it hasn't rained a lot, that may be a good trip. We may finally get to hike that loop, or what was it? I forgot. Meet same time, same place.

Monday, November 23, was cold but dry, so we headed off to Blodgett Road. This time we went up the main road, not off on the idyllic rainforest trail. It was a continuous uphill hike for Gary, Jan, Mary, John, Gillian, Sue and Jim. We reached the quarry at the top of hill (and it was the top, PAST the peak. I realized my goal.) There was evidence that the quarry had been used as a target practice range for hunters, with many shotgun shells around. While returning downhill, a truck with a couple of hunters came up the road and they told us we should not be up there, as elk season was still open. We decided that we should hike in non-hunter territory next week, such as Cape Perpetua. The post-hike map review revealed that we had actually gone beyond Blodgett Peak. That road that went off to the left before we reached the quarry would have taken us to the peak.

On Monday, November 16, despite high winds, we hiked on Dick's Fork road once again, thinking that we would get out of the wind as we traveled inland. The forest kept us from getting buffeted and there was very little rain. We saw more vehicle traffic on this secondary road than ever, and a (South County Water?) crew actually recognized us as the Waldport Walkers. The driver was present at last Thursday's City Council meeting. This crew passed us twice and called out "You guys are fast" the second time. Compared to last Monday, it was pretty uneventful, but fun, as always. Hikers were John, Margaret, Gary, Jan, Jim and Mary. The additional 4.5 miles today puts us close to 100 miles since we started.

On Thursday, November 12, our mentor, John, was honored at the Waldport City Council meeting, receiving a commendation from Governor Ted Kulongoski for his leadership in promoting physical fitness, which John certainly does, and does well. The award was presented by Waldport Mayor Herman Welch. In the photo, Councilwoman Sue Woodruff, in the background, is one of us walkers. Following the ceremony, some of the Walkers and John's Green Bike helpers adjourned to the Salty Dawg for a libation. Congratulations to you, John.

On Monday, November 9, John and Margaret were tired from a difficult hike that they took the day before, and besides, the weather was awful, rain and wind, and had been that way for three days. Jan and Gary, Mary and Jim decided to stay in town and cross the bridge. The rain let up a bit and off we went. Partway across the bridge, as happens so often, the wind came up, at our backs, portending a tough return trip. We walked into the Seventh Day Adventist area and beyond, then started back. On the bridge, a squall came up and it was difficult to walk at all. Did I mention we all failed the daily IQ test this morning? Yes, Gillian, we saw you crossing the bridge northbound in the dry comfort of your car. We managed to walk 2.86 miles but were soaked for the trouble. No discussion was held about next week, so just meet at Keady, unless the weather is similar to yesterday.

On Monday, November 2, John and Margaret, Gary and Jan, Jo, Mary, Gillian, Sue and Jim investigated the trails that Mary and Margaret found last week off Bayview Drive. Those confounded ankle-snatchers caused two human falls on this hike. The terrain was undulating, downhill, and a lot of uphill. We ran into two dead ends, and found a second trail which we may investigate further next Monday. That, or, if John can find out where another group who investigated trails near Drift Creek were, last week, we may try to find a link between these two trails to aid in establishment of the "C to C" (Corvallis to the Coast) trail. Standby for further info. In any event we will continue to meet at Keady Wayside.

Another rainout on October 25, EXCEPT that Mary and Margaret not only walked around town in the rain, they explored a forest road off of Bayview Drive here in Waldport. I think that is where we will attempt to go next Monday, meeting at Keady Wayside as usual. Perhaps we should bring kayaks and canoes with us?

After three days of heavy rain and commitments of many of our hikers, we called off the Monday, October 19 hike. John had some good news about a preliminary input for a grant to make the red ditch trail and others improved to the point where tourists and local residents could use them. We will meet again next Monday, October 26, at Keady Wayside, and discuss whre we might go. Cummins Creek is still a goal.

On Monday, October 12, Shirley and Sue returned to the trails, joining Jan, Gary, Margaret, John, Mary, Gillian, Jim and Jo for a return to the new Oregon State Park area off Beaver Creek Road. As we approached the gate, someone suggested that we needed leashes on some of the members. Darned if there wasn't a new sign on the gate, "Leashes Required." The trail guide of the day (me) had a plan for exploring the Canyon Loop and then Snaggy Point. As we started up the hill it was obvious that it was more like a mountain. Plans changed, and I lost complete control of the group. Canyon Loop was bypassed. We went directly to Snaggy Point, a great overlook area, and judging from the "evidence" of elk in the area, we had spooked a large herd of them. They obviously can read, and noted that this area is posted "No Hunting," and probably all elk in the local area had gathered there. From there we descended on several trails, many of which were labeled "Cougar Ridge." I think there are several Cougar Ridge trails. It was another adventure, and incredibly, the nineteenth in a row without a rainout. The leash law did not work, as John found a different Cougar Ridge trail and beat the rest of back to the parking area. Hasn't this been fun? Next Monday we will again meet at Keady Wayside and return to the Cummins Creek trail south of Cape Perpetua. After a week of rain it will be interesting, but then all of them have been so.

Monday, October 5, John, Margaret, Gary, Jan, Jim, Gillian and Mary repeated the first of our hikes, up the red ditch or wash from the LCSD baseball fields and associated trails which are in the City of Waldport. There is a short stretch of that trail that will certainly require some work such as a stairway, as it is steep and slippery. Many hikers would be turned around by this, but not our intrepid group. We found some very interesting natural wonders, fallen trees, snags and things that created interesting sculptures. Rhododendrons growing up on the trees. Many trails near the city park would require very little work to make them appealing.

I gave some of you copies of the photo below. I took two, and the other isn't as good. Somehow I gave that other one to one of you. In it, Gary is looking down. I will be glad to give whoever got that one, the better one. Please let me know. Jo, we missed you.

Next Monday, October 12, we will meet at Keady Wayside and carpool to the Beaver Creek Oregon State Park site, which is posted against hunting, and continue to explore that area.

I will continue to leave the September 21 discussion below, as you all seemed to enjoy it.

Alas! Our Vern has gone away, now who will keep the bears at bay?


Taken on hike September 28.

Link to a photo album of our adventures Click Here


On Monday, September 21, another new guest, John Beauchamp, joined Vern, Margaret, John, Mary, Jillian, Jo, Gary, Jan and Jim for a hike to explore alternate routes to the former trail along Lint Slough. Jo's 13 year old dog, Pepper, also came along and really enjoyed getting into the mud along the way. There are some real possibilties along the west side of the slough, as John suggested, some viewing stands for birders and naturalists. There are also some really tough trails along there that we had some difficulty negotiating. Eventually we separated into three groups. Vern had shoe problems and Jo wanted to get Pepper home, so they left us. John M, Gary and Jan took off on some sort of Lewis and Clark excursion, leaving Jim, Mary, Margaret, John B and Gillian behind. Undaunted, those folks tried to follow the trailblazers, unsuccessfully. They backtracked to the starting point and contemplated sending out a bulletin to find the "lost" hikers. Gillian cruised up and down Crestline Drive trying to locate them. Did you three ever come out of the woods? If so, please email us about your adventure. I also apologize for not putting out the word to bring clippers, machetes, chain saws and bulldozers for today's hike.

Jim took his daughter Lisa and son-in-law John B to our favorite rainforest off Blodgett Road after lunch. They really enjoyed the tranquility of that place, as we all experienced when discovering it.

Next Monday, as it was Vern's choice on his last hike with us this season, we will meet at Keady Wayside and carpool to Cape Perpetua, to hike the Oregon Coast trail which runs south of the parking lot there. Vern wants to have a view of the coast, as he and Marlene will be returning to California.

Jan and Gary sent this update: I guess Gary and I are the Meriweather Lewis half (since he is a Lewis decendant). However, we did not find the old road nor the trail back down, which John M. did! We finally came out of the underbrush somewhere up near the head of the slough. Our apologies to all of you for the inconvenience!! We definitely over-did and we're glad you all had the good sense not to follow us! See you next week!

Jan & Gary