Lower McKenzie River Trail

June 14, 2005

Under a rare (lately) partly sunny sky, six Obsidians boarded the #91 Lane Transit District bus in Eugene or Springfield and traveled 50 miles to the McKenzie River Ranger Station to begin this shady forest hike along the Lower McKenzie River Trail. Our hike endpoint was Belknap Hot Springs Lodge and Gardens, four miles further up river. We found the trail pleasantly shady, mostly dry-damp, and easy walking, though we had to circumnavigate a major mud quagmire at a road crossing just after Paradise Campground, and a fir tree had fallen and obscured about 30 feet of trail at about mile three. At the lodge we had lunch, then split into smaller groups to soak in the hot pools or wander the extensive gardens. Helmut demonstrated Watsu, a massage technique using the resistance and buoyancy of water combined with traditional Shiatsu massage. Too soon we had to meet to retrace our steps back to the Ranger Station, then board the bus to return to Eugene/Springfield. A great time was had by all, and we each expressed satisfaction at having partaken of the “best bargain in Lane County”—the bus ride out the McKenzie River Valley, all for a paltry $2.50, round trip. Rider-hikers were, Anne Bonine, Mary Ann Holser, Tom Holser, Barbara Morgan, Helmut Plant, and leader, Barb Revere.

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