Skinner and Gillespie Buttes

May 6, 2006

Five of us enjoyed a leisurely walk up the gravel trail to Skinner Butte (also called Skinner’s Butte) where we had a panoramic view of downtown Eugene. It was too cloudy to see the mountains. Yuan pointed out the various apartment/condo buildings. We then walked down to the columns and over to the marker for Eugene Skinner. None of us could answer Sue’s questions about Skinner. I later found out that in 1846, Eugene Skinner arrived in the valley and erected a cabin on the hill on the advice of the Kalapuya, who warned him against the floods on the Willamette. The marker commemorates the site of the cabin. From there, we followed the bike path to Valley River, across the overpass, and up Clinton Street to Gillespie Butte and the cemetery. From Gillespie Butte (605 ft., one has a clear shot of Skinner (682 ft) and Spencer Butte (2052 ft). On our way back, we stopped at Starbucks for coffee and conversation. We continued on the North Bank Bike Trail to Alton Baker Park, over the Peter DeFazio Bridge and back to our cars. It was fun to point out all of the local sights to Sue who moved to Eugene last year. All of us appreciated the low cost “fueless” 3½ hour hike.

Members: Jane Hackett (leader), Yuan Hopkins, Janet Jacobsen (reporter) and Sue Meyers. Nonmembers: Ebony Null.

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