Hiking Barlow Wayside Park in Mt. Hood National Forest

hiking forest trail

Barlow Wayside Trail

You are about to enter a forested wonderland where everything is part of a whole – every plant, animal, tree, fish, bird, bug, and slug has its place…so, says Clackamas County and Bureau of Land Management Sandy Ridge Trail System.

The scent of the forest draws me every time I am in the Pacific Northwest. And, this little gem,

Barlow Wayside Park

that once used to be the Barlow Road, the last segment on the Oregon Trail, is my new favorite outdoor activity destination.

Hiking

on the Little Joe Loop is a very easy and enjoyable trail to navigate as are the Falls Loop and Northern Loop trails. While this park is a short way from Highway 26 on the way to Mt. Hood, it is easy to find and is well marked by road signs.
Here’s what we saw on our riparian adventure…

mushrooms on pine - hiking at Barlow Wayside Park

Mushrooms on pine nurse log

mushroom curly close - hiking at Barlow Wayside Park

Curly forest mushrooms

mushrooms on nurse log - hiking at Barlow Wayside Park

Mushrooms on nurse log

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Mushrooms are the surface “fruit” that carry spores for propagation. Some mushrooms grow on organic matter (dead trees), while others in the soil are part of a larger, unseen underground fungus organism.

Nurse logs are fallen trees that become a resource of nutrient rich organic matter, water, and insects that vegetation and animals depend on.

Source:  Clackamas County

As I am not a mushroom expert, I don’t know if these are edible. If they are, one couldn’t possibly go hungry in this forest.

Mt. Hood Reflected in Trillium Lake Oregon

Reflection of Mt. Hood in Trillium Lake, Cascade Range, Oregon

Mt. Hood Reflected in Trillium Lake, Oregon

Fall in the Pacific Northwest can offer incredible scenic opportunities. In October last year we drove around the base of Mt. Hood to Trillium Lake and I was able to capture this image with my iPhone 4S.

Trillium Lake (man made) is located about seven miles south-southwest of Mt. Hood. It is formed by a dam at the headwaters of Mud Creek which is a tributary to the Salmon River. It was created in 1960 by the state Department of Fish and Wildlife.

The area was part of Barlow Road which was a segment of the Oregon Trail. Trillium is a flower particularly noticeable here.

Mt. Hood, in the Cascade Range, is located about 50 miles east-southeast of Portland and is Oregon’s highest mountain at 11,249 feet and the peak is home to twelve glaciers. While Mt. Hood is considered potentially active, an eruption is unlikely, so is informally considered dormant.

It is a popular hiking destination, as well as skiing (sometimes into July) and climbing. More than 130 people have died in climbing-related accidents since records have been kept. It seems that someone always loses their life during the winter months on the mountain.

We travel here a lot and I have conducted of tours in this Pacific Northwest area. I call this the Oregon Bounty Tour and offer this program twice per year.