For our final outing of 2019 we combined a little hiking with a bit of Christmas Shopping by heading up to Portland for the day. Our plan was to do a pair of Sullivan’s featured hikes before visiting the Portland Saturday Market.
We were the second car at the small parking area where we set off past the green gate blocking further access to Saltzman Road.
We followed the closed road for .4 miles to a junction where the Maple Trail crossed the road. Here we turned left onto that trail.
We followed this trail for a mile and a half, ignoring side trails, as we climbed gradually to Leif Erikson Drive. It was a cloudy morning and the forest was damp but it wasn’t raining which made for a pleasant walk amid the trees.
Bridge over a small stream.
Heading into a little bit of fog.
Too cloudy for any real views.
We crossed the closed road and continued on the Maple Trail for another .4 miles to a fork where we veered right at a pointer for the Wildwood Trail.
A short climb brought us to the Wildwood Trail where we turned right and headed up some wooden steps.
Along the way we crossed Saltzman Road.
Saltzman Road at the 2.5 mile mark of the 3.2 mile stretch.
Approximately .7 miles after crossing Saltzman Road we turned right onto signed Firelane 5.
This windy track was rutted by bike tires as it made its way downhill to Leif Erikson Drive after about half a mile.
Aproaching Leif Erikson Drive.
We turned right onto Leif Erikson for .2 miles to a curve with a grassy flat on the left with a sign for the Maple Trail.
We followed the Maple Trail for 1.2 miles back to Saltzman Road where we turned left and hiked the .4 miles back to the trailhead. The forest along this section of the Maple Trail was nice and on a clearer day there may have been a few views but we settled for the trees and some passing geese.
The trailhead was full when we got back so we quickly changed our shoes and opened up a spot for another trail user. We headed for downtown Portland for our next stop at Tom McCall Waterfront Park. We actually parked at a lot on the corner of 4th and Harvey Milk St. and walked 3+ blocks to the park.
The Saturday Market was just a bit to the left but we went right heading for the Morrison Bridge and planning on hitting the market at the end of our loop.
There were almost as many geese as people in this section of the park.
We followed the Waterfront Park Trail along the Willamette River under the Morrison Bridge and toward the Hawthorne Bridge.
After about three quarters of a mile we passed through the South Waterfront Park Garden.
This was quickly followed by Poet’s Beach under the Marquam Bridge.
There was also an interesting piece of art near the Tilikum Crossing Bridge where we would be heading across the river.
The bridge was opened in September 2015 and is restricted to transit, pedestrian, and cyclist use only.
Marquam Bridge from Tilikum Crossing.
After crossing the river we turned left towards OMSI on the Eastbank Esplanade.
Tilikum Crossing from the esplanade.
We followed the Eastbank Esplanade for a total of 1.75 miles to the Steele Bridge. The scenery along this stretch was a bit more industrial with sections not too far from the Interstate, but there were still some interesting and pretty sights along the way.
We recrossed the Willamette on the Steele Bridge arriving back at Waterfront Park near the Japanese American Historical Plaza and the Portland Saturday Market.
We wound our way through the market visiting all the booths before returning to our car and heading home. We did manage to find a couple of Christmas gifts so it had not only been a fun day hiking but it had been productive as well. We walked about 5 miles between the loop around the Willamette and the market which was just about as much as our feet could handle for the day.
That’s it for us as far as hikes go for 2019, we hope everyone has a Merry Christmas and Happy New Year! (and Happy Trails too!)
Flickr: Maple Trail and Tilikum Crossing