Posts by jetglue

The Construction of Timberline Lodge

July 14, 2017 Posted by Newsletter 0 thoughts on “The Construction of Timberline Lodge”

Undated photo showing Timberline Lodge’s setting on the south side of Mt. Hood.

Timberline Lodge serves as the starting point for several of the most popular hikes on Mount Hood. The iconic around-the-mountain Timberline Trail starts and ends at the lodge. It’s now once again a complete 41.5-mile trail, thanks in part to the volunteers of TKO for helping to build a new section of trail at the washed-out Eliot Branch crossing. Hikes from the lodge lead west to Zigzag Canyon, further west to Paradise Park, north up the mountain to the Silcox Hut, and east to the White River Canyon. (more…)

Developing “Trail Eyes”

July 14, 2017 Posted by Newsletter 0 thoughts on “Developing “Trail Eyes””

Slough and trail creep on the Wygant Trail near Mitchell Point, Columbia River Gorge. The arrow shows where the uphill edge of the trail should be.

Almost every hiking trail in the Northwest has been worked on by a volunteer group. Trailkeepers of Oregon’s robust network of volunteers maintain the trails that we all love to hike, correcting problems and improving the overall hiking experience. Most people who have done trail work say that they will never look at a trail the same way again. But you don’t have to join a work party to begin developing “trail eyes” (although we would love to have you!). Here are some things to watch for as you hike. (more…)

Summer Hike of the Season: McCully Basin

July 14, 2017 Posted by Newsletter 0 thoughts on “Summer Hike of the Season: McCully Basin”

Looking across McCully Basin to Mount Melissa.

In summer Oregon hikers dust off their backpacks and stray far from their urban bases in search of an immersive experience in the outdoors. The Eagle Cap Wilderness in the Wallowa Mountains is a favorite choice with its fault-block peaks and open ridges and lake basins. If you’ve already spent a summer backpack or two in some of the popular Wallowa destinations, you’ll appreciate the solitude of this summer’s hike of the season—the somewhat un-Wallowa-like hike in the McCully Basin. (more…)

Join Now: Become a Trailkeeper

July 14, 2017 Posted by Newsletter 0 thoughts on “Join Now: Become a Trailkeeper”

Trailkeepers of Oregon has been working to enhance the Oregon hiking experience for ten years now. As we look to the future, we see critical opportunities to protect and improve our connections to the natural and scenic wonders of Oregon. We are poised to seize these opportunities to preserve our state’s trail legacy, build new trails today, and advocate for the trails of tomorrow. We need your support to expand our programming and volunteer-driven stewardship activities. With no paid staff we have accomplished much in our ten years as a trails nonprofit. But Oregon’s hiking trails need more than we’re currently able to provide, due to increased use of trails by a growing population, deterioration of trails from age, and damage to trails by extreme weather events. We need more members to expand our ability to care for the hiking trails across Oregon. We cannot do this without your help. As we build our membership, we can speak as a united voice for the Oregon hiking experience. Please make a statement of support for our work and for your natural and scenic wonders of Oregon. Join us by becoming a member today!

Steve Kruger

Executive Director, Trailkeepers of Oregon

Big Changes at Trailkeepers of Oregon

July 14, 2017 Posted by Newsletter 0 thoughts on “Big Changes at Trailkeepers of Oregon”

The author at Owl Point.

Trailkeepers of Oregon will celebrate its tenth anniversary this year.

This important milestone marks not only ten years of our work, but some big steps to buildthe foundation for our next decade. Chief among those is the hiring of our first Executive Director, Steve Kruger. You will hear more from Steve in the coming months, which brings us to a second announcement—our newsletter. You are now reading the first issue of what we intend to be a quarterly newsletter. We hope that you find value in keeping up with our ongoing work and reading the fun and informative articles we have planned for you. This leads to our third announcement—a new membership program. We depend on your support to continue our work, and a great way to do that is by becoming a member. There are some fun rewards, and you can start your membership now by clicking here.

As we look ahead to some very big changes for the organization, it’s also a time to reflect on how far we’ve come. In the summer of 2007, I began posting trip reports on the Portland Hikers Forum, a new but rapidly growing web community, about a “lost trail” on the north side of Mount Hood. The trail was a little known extension of the popular Vista Ridge Trail. It toured some of the most scenic country in the Mount Hood area but had been abandoned for decades. Worse yet, the trail was being considered as part of a possible large motorcycle “play park” that would destroy many subalpine meadows and huckleberry fields in this remarkable area.

And so it was that volunteers from the Portland Hikers Forum organized an impromptu trip to clear the old trail in hopes of bringing more hikers to appreciate and defend what would soon be dubbed the Old Vista Ridge Trail. That trail work on Old Vista Ridge was the beginning of what would become Trailkeepers of Oregon (TKO). The founding members from the Portland Hikers Forum recognized the crisis facing trails on our public lands and the need for organized advocacy for both trails and hiking in Oregon.

As we celebrate our first decade much has changed. TKO now sponsors dozens of trail stewardship projects each year, totaling thousands of hours of volunteer work. We are gradually expanding our service area in an effort to become a truly statewide organization. And as part of our education and outreach mission, we continue to sponsor the Oregon Hikers Forum and the Oregon Hikers Field Guide, which now has information on 900-plus hikes, online and free to the public.

Now, ten years on, TKO will also be hiring our first Executive Director this summer to continue our growth and expand our protection of trails and construction of new trails. We hope you will take this next step with us, and, if you haven’t already, become a member of TKO. Your membership support will help ensure that we can continue our work as advocates and stewards for Oregon’s trails.

This summer, our journey as trail advocates will come full circle at Old Vista Ridge. The US Forest Service has agreed to formally recognize this beautiful trail after nearly fifty years of being officially abandoned. TKO is adopting the trail to ensure its ongoing maintenance. We’ll be leading stewardship projects there this summer to celebrate our first decade and continue bringing this old trail to life. And this time the work will be sanctioned!

We have much more planned as we move into our second decade, including brand new trails on Mount Hood, in the Columbia River Gorge, and around Oregon as part of our “20 Trails in 20 Years” campaign. Anyone can join us for one of our volunteer work parties! No experience or equipment is required, and you’ll feel great participating in the care of your trails.

In the meantime, stop by our Oregon Hikers Forum and Oregon Hikers Field Guide to learn the latest on the best places to hike. We hope you’ll also consider supporting TKO and become a member.

Thanks, and see you on the trail!

Tom Kloster

President, Trailkeepers of Oregon

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