Willamette Heights & Kelly Butte

April 12, 2007

The rain stopped as nine of us met at 8:30 a.m. at the Chamber of Commerce, 101 S. A. St. in Springfield and then walked up to Willamette Heights Park, 508 Valley View Avenue. On the short path meandering through the park to the southern viewpoint, we saw fawn lilies and camas. On the way down the hill, we wandered by an unlabeled building that used to be LCC, through the Pioneer Cemetery, and down the steps to the railroad tracks. Pat Hutchins, a nonmember, gave a short overview of the old Booth Kelly mill and millrace. After a short restroom break at the Chamber of Commerce, we walked under the bridge and to Island Park. On D Street, we turned on Riverview St. for the uphill walk to Kelly Butte/Park for views up the McKenzie Valley. Back on the bike path, Ginny and Roger Reich needed to leave our group at the Knickerbocker Bike Bridge and catch EMX back to Springfield. Pat pointed out the licorice fern growing on the maple trees. A few took up his offer to taste the root. Over the Peter DeFazio Bridge and through downtown, to the Nike Museum and the Peace Park, we “sorta” flew. The group discussed the merits of the next rest stop but finally voted for the Hilton Hotel where we mingled with a Nursing Convention. At last, we reached the LTD Bus Station for the EMX ride back to Springfield. The five mile walk that I posted on the sign up sheet turned out to be 7 miles according to Pat’s GPS. Our pavement sore feet agreed. The trip took 3 hours and 20 minutes. We all agreed that using the “free” EMX for a hike along the river was the ticket!

Hikers were members: Daniele Delaby, Walt Dolliver, Jim Floyd, Kathleen Floyd, Janet Jacobsen (leader), Marshall Kandell and Ginny Reich, and nonmembers: Pat Hutchins and Roger Reich.

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