Cottage Grove/Oakland Loop Ride

May 26, 2002

Perhaps the weather report scared everyone off. Or maybe they were more interested in Sharon’s Mt. June trip than having a pleasant ride down into Douglas County. In any case, when I picked up the sign-up sheet Saturday afternoon, mine was still the only name on it … so I went by myself!

Ha! The day turned out to be quite wonderful — warm, with some clouds, but not a drop! The wildflowers were out in force, more than I've seen before on this trip. Irises were everywhere, mainly I. tenax, but there were some patches of the creamy-yellow I. chrysophylla along the London-Shoestring road. Other flowers seen were cats-ear (south of Elkhead), hawthorn (including some rose-colored ones just outside Oakland), black locust (in the Oakland city park), camas (including greenish-white ones by the Green Valley road), madrone (here & there), and even both red-twig and pacific dogwoods.

The scenery was great, and the sky put on quite a show with some fantastical high cloud formations. The wonderful descents were enjoyed by all (ha ha!) Especially noted were the fast descents to the Shoestring Valley, into the English Settlement area, off of Metz Hill, the Goodrich Hwy. into Rice Hill, Territorial Road into the Lorane valley, and the Cottage Grove-Lorane Hwy. — Wayne Deeter

Cottage Grove Lake

New rock wall at infamous slide area south of the lake

Scot’s broom along the London-Shoestring road

Iris chrysophylla growing beside the London-Shoestring road

Shoestring Valley

Ben More Mountain from a mile north of Elkhead

Cats-ear along the road near Ben More Mountain

Clouds over English Settlement (near Mildred Kanipe County Park)

Rose-tinted hawthorn blossoms

Black locust in bloom at the city park a half block off of Locust Street

Greenish-white camas along Green Valley Road

Ben More Mountain from the Goodrich Highway

Pale Iris tenax by the old Territorial Road between Curtin and Lorane

Blooming madrone by the Cottage Grove-Lorane Highway

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