Backwoods history buff

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BClick
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Joined: May 13th, 2021, 4:59 pm

Backwoods history buff

Post by BClick » May 13th, 2021, 7:55 pm

Hi all - longtime Oregon Hikers field guide user but first time poster. I've lived in the Northwest for about a decade, and after a summer stint with a conservation corps in 2015 rekindled my childhood love for hiking, I've spent a lot of time on the trail (although not nearly as much as I'd like).

I've recently changed career tracks and now work in environmental restoration, and I've consequently been practicing my plant ID skills - it's given me a whole new layer of enjoyment on my hikes and is something I'd like to continue to develop.

As well as a hiker, I'm a local and regional history buff with a particular interest in people's interaction with the natural world. I have spent a lot of time looking for ghost towns, old lumber camps, and other bits and pieces of physical history. I've recently started browsing the forum and have been impressed by the immense wealth of knowledge here, and I'd love to learn more about off-trail GPS navigation and using older maps to find abandoned roads and other traces of the past in the backcountry.

Favorite hikes of all time include the backpacking loops I've done in Olympic and Goat Rocks, as well as last summer's traverse of a certain abandoned Coast Range railroad I'm not supposed to name...

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retired jerry
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Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm

Re: Backwoods history buff

Post by retired jerry » May 14th, 2021, 4:58 am

welcome

same here - I like loops in Olympics and Goat Rocks.

Salmonberry River? That's abandoned but still open to hikers I believe.

RobFromRedland
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Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm

Re: Backwoods history buff

Post by RobFromRedland » May 14th, 2021, 7:10 am

retired jerry wrote:
May 14th, 2021, 4:58 am
Salmonberry River? That's abandoned but still open to hikers I believe.
I thought the whole Salmonberry canyon is now all closed to hikers (technically)?

I was able to do it several years ago - if they ever make a trail there it is going to be gorgeous.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention to arrive safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: WOW-What a ride!

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retired jerry
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Re: Backwoods history buff

Post by retired jerry » May 14th, 2021, 7:53 am

I did Salmonberry a few years ago. Yeah, nice spot for a trail. Some spots were difficult to walk through, washed out, but it doesn't seem like it would be that difficult to fix. It was open then, but not really an official trail

leiavoia
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Joined: April 24th, 2015, 9:53 pm

Re: Backwoods history buff

Post by leiavoia » May 14th, 2021, 8:44 am

Salmonberry was a unique opportunity, but is now off-limits. I don't know if its signed as such, but officially its railroad land and you are trespassing, and definitely truss-passing (ha!).

There is a committee assigned to research making it a mega-trail, but the project has had difficulty starting If anything happens with that, it will be on the scale of decades. https://www.salmonberrytrail.org/

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retired jerry
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Re: Backwoods history buff

Post by retired jerry » May 14th, 2021, 8:54 am

It seems like it would be difficult to repair for trains. And there isn't really that much need for a railroad to go there.

BClick
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Joined: May 13th, 2021, 4:59 pm

Re: Backwoods history buff

Post by BClick » May 14th, 2021, 11:31 am

retired jerry wrote:
May 14th, 2021, 8:54 am
It seems like it would be difficult to repair for trains. And there isn't really that much need for a railroad to go there.
From what I understand it's not that the Port is using it or particularly cares that people are hiking it, but it's pretty dangerous and so it's officially off-limits for liability reasons.

If they do go ahead with the big rail-to-trail, it would have to be sooner rather than later to be at all feasible - every year that goes by those big trestles get more scary and rotten, and there is a lot of successional growth coming up through the tracks.

Or so I've heard.

Webfoot
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Joined: November 25th, 2015, 11:06 am
Location: Troutdale

Re: Backwoods history buff

Post by Webfoot » May 14th, 2021, 12:05 pm

BClick wrote:
May 14th, 2021, 11:31 am
Or so I've heard.
;)

RobFromRedland
Posts: 1039
Joined: May 28th, 2008, 10:03 pm

Re: Backwoods history buff

Post by RobFromRedland » May 14th, 2021, 2:17 pm

BClick wrote:
May 14th, 2021, 11:31 am
retired jerry wrote:
May 14th, 2021, 8:54 am
It seems like it would be difficult to repair for trains. And there isn't really that much need for a railroad to go there.
From what I understand it's not that the Port is using it or particularly cares that people are hiking it, but it's pretty dangerous and so it's officially off-limits for liability reasons.

If they do go ahead with the big rail-to-trail, it would have to be sooner rather than later to be at all feasible - every year that goes by those big trestles get more scary and rotten, and there is a lot of successional growth coming up through the tracks.

Or so I've heard.
We did it back in 2012, and at that point it was mostly clear. Grasses, etc coming up along the tracks but very little other growth. I've seen more recent photos and there is a LOT of brush growing up along the line now. When we did it, it was pretty tough going due to all the washouts, etc, but I can't even begin to imagine doing it now with all the brush.

I wish I had been able to ride the train thru there before it all washed out in 2007. That would have been a pretty cool ride.
Life is not a journey to the grave with the intention to arrive safely in a pretty and well-preserved body, but rather to skid in broadside, thoroughly used up, totally worn out, and loudly proclaiming: WOW-What a ride!

leiavoia
Posts: 155
Joined: April 24th, 2015, 9:53 pm

Re: Backwoods history buff

Post by leiavoia » May 14th, 2021, 3:32 pm

I did it in 2014 and encountered a train coming in from the Nehelem River area where the "trail" ends (possibly the dinner train from Tillimook). So there were trains at least up to that point. Possibly still running?

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