Pre’s & River Trails

February 2, 2009

Although the temp was in the very low 30s, the sun was out and shining encouragingly upon our venture. From the duck pond in Alton Baker Park, we set out on Pre’s Trail and had only reached Autzen Stadium when we veered off our set course to see the new Kilkenny Baseball Field. Enroute, we looked in on the Moshofsky Center and passed the Casanova Center as we circled Autzen. The power had just come on for the new baseball field and the lights were getting their first test. Bleachers were being erected for the first season, due to get underway this month. One of the construction crew took time to fill us in on everything and we moved on patting ourselves on the back for deciding to make the detour, which added about a half-mile to our hike. Instead of backtracking, we went by the BMX track and then cut in along the waterway (and the magnificent homes backing upon it), back to Pre’s Trail and the balance of our planned route. Although this would seem to be familiar territory, several of our group had never before seen the UofO facilities or been on portions of the trail. On the return loop through the Wilamut Natural Area, we stopped to check out a large cairn that had recently been built, both to provide housing for a variety of reptiles and small animals and to illustrate the value of restoring some of nature’s landscape.

Enjoying this most interesting walk (which included sightings of a great blue heron and an osprey in a tree playing with its still squirming lunch) were members Jim and Sharon Duncan, Marshall Kandell, Jim Pierce and Ruth Romoser; and prospective member Ken Rivernider.

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