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EasyCLIMB Loop Hike

From Oregon Hikers Field Guide

Rocky headland on Government Cove, EasyCLIMB (bobcat)
Orange honeysuckle (Lonicera ciliosa), EasyCLIMB (bobcat)
Rock bridge, EasyCLIMB (bobcat)
Common camas (Camassia quamash), EasyCLIMB (bobcat)
The loop described using the mountain biking trails at the EasyCLIMB site (bobcat) Courtesy: Google Maps
  • Start point: EasyCLIMB TrailheadRoad.JPG
  • End point: Government Cove
  • Hike Type: Loop
  • Distance: 2.8 miles
  • High point: 180 feet
  • Elevation gain: 170 feet
  • Difficulty: Easy
  • Seasons: All year
  • Family Friendly: Yes
  • Backpackable: No
  • Crowded: No


Hike Description

The EasyCLIMB loop is squeezed into a wooded verge between Herman Creek Cove and Government Cove at the east end of Cascade Locks. In the years before the creation of a trail system here, this had been primarily an illegal dumping site, and before that it was the site of a sawmill. The trails are built for mountain bikes (CLIMB = Cascade Locks International Mountain Bike) and wind tortuously through mixed forest along the shores of Government Cove to some lovely oak meadows blooming with camas, chocolate lilies, and buttercups on cliffs above the river. Snappy mountain biker labels, such as Ivy league, Itchy Vista, and Enchanted Forest, designate each section of trail. There are great views across to the Bonneville Landslide and also back to the face of the Benson Plateau. EasyCLIMB is for beginner mountain bikers, but hikers are also welcome: spring and fall are the best times for walking here. A disc golf course that overlaps the trails also attracts weekend recreationists. Hikers may be interested to know, however, that EasyCLIMB is but a precursor to a planned 25-mile network of biking trails between Cascade Locks and Wyeth: this course will intersect with the many hiking trails in the area.

Begin at the information kiosk by taking a trail into the Scots broom about ten yards and turning right at a four-way intersection. Skirt the parking area to begin the Humpy Bumpy section. Cross a vehicle track, and pass through a thicket of common tansy, blackberry, cottonwood, willow, and young maple. Go left at the Ivy League section, and drop down a slope. Pass through a thicket of blackberry and Scots broom, and enter the disc golf course area. Keep right and then left at a three-way junction. You’re now in more natural woods of maple and snowberry which transition to oak. The trail loops in on itself rather elaborately here in the Goldi Locks section. Don’t cut corners as you head along a slope and pass a cutoff to the left before you enter the Deaf Jam section near the freeway. Circle around under Douglas-firs, cottonwoods, and willows, and then enter oak territory again. You will get views of Government Cove to the right with its rotting pilings that were once used to tie up log rafts (one such raft remains). Recross a small creek, and take a short spur right to a narrow beach. Back on the main trail, cross a disc golf fairway, and emerge form the Enchanted Forest section to enter the Esplanade.

Pass a couple of rocky beaches, and rise up a slope to a beautiful, grassy oak headland. Get a view back to the face of the Benson Plateau, and look for an osprey nest on top of a nearby Douglas-fir. Loop up in a meadow of spring-blooming camas, chocolate lily, and buttercup. Leave the trail to take in a clifftop viewpoint to the right. You can get a view from here downriver to Greenleaf Peak, Table Mountain, and the whole Bonneville Landslide. Join the Itchy Vista trail section, so-named because from here on you will encounter poison oak. Make a looping descent from the cliff along the rim of an old quarry. A spur leads right down the rim of the quarry to join the gravel road at Blackberry Beach.

You can hike from here along the white alder-shaded breakwater that separates Herman Creek Cove from the Columbia River. Look for geese, ducks, and kingfishers in the cove, and listen for red-winged blackbirds in the reeds. This diversion ends on the breakwater at a blackberry thicket. Return to the quarry trail, and go right on the main loop. This will undulate along the Anti Gravity section until you reach the a spur that leads out to the parking area.


Restrictions, facilities, etc

  • Port-a-potty at first right off of Cramblett Way
  • Dogs on leash
  • Yield to cyclists

Trip Reports

Related Discussions / Q&A

Guidebooks that cover this hike

  • Best Bike Rides: Portland, Oregon by Lizann Dunegan & Ayleen Crotty

More Links


Oregon Hikers Field Guide is built as a collaborative effort by its user community. While we make every effort to fact-check, information found here should be considered anecdotal. You should cross-check against other references before planning a hike. Trail routing and conditions are subject to change. Please contact us if you notice errors on this page.

Hiking is a potentially risky activity, and the entire risk for users of this field guide is assumed by the user, and in no event shall Trailkeepers of Oregon be liable for any injury or damages suffered as a result of relying on content in this field guide. All content posted on the field guide becomes the property of Trailkeepers of Oregon, and may not be used without permission.