Hidden Falls Nature Park -- May 3, 2020

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Joined: March 13th, 2014, 10:09 am

Hidden Falls Nature Park -- May 3, 2020

Post by datura » May 4th, 2020, 12:35 pm

Hidden Falls Nature Park is a new-ish park/trail in Clackamas, OR. I didn't see any reports about it in the field guide or on the forum, so I went to check it out. I only had a short period of time while I was out doing errands and chores, so was in the mood for something short and not too muddy.

Well, short and not too muddy describes the trail. It is a wide paved path that cuts across a stream within some suburban housing developments. Dogs are allowed, and indeed, it seems to be a popular trail for people out walking their dogs. Luckily the path is wide enough that social distancing is quite possible.

hidden falls trail 1.jpg

Paving makes sense since the nature park mostly consists of a small, steep ravine with a creek (Rock Creek) at the bottom. The trail zigzags down, past a row of newly-built houses, to a well-built bridge set among fairly large trees. From the bridge a charming little waterfall is visible. While I was there, not only was the trail full of people, the stream itself had several groups of teenagers happily splashing about.

hidden falls trail 3.jpg

I did like the waterfall, though. I'm glad this little park is here. It's not really a destination hike, but it's a cute spot to check out if you're already in the area. It would be a very reasonable connector trail if you're doing an urban neighborhood walk. This stream valley would be nice to experience pretty much any time of the year.

hidden falls trail 2.jpg

The nature area is run by the North Clackamas Parks and Recreation District. Here is the current link to park info: https://ncprd.com/parks/hidden-falls-nature-park.

It is meant to provide "a key link in the regional Mt. Scott/Scouters Mountain Trail Loop and serves as a pedestrian corridor to connect local public facilities such as Oregon Trail Elementary School and Pioneer Park to the west, as well as Rock Creek Middle School, Verne Duncan Elementary School and Hood View Park to the east."

The trail has two prongs on the west side of the creek, each going to a different road in the subdivision. On the east side, the trail runs towards Hood View Park and Rock Creek Middle School.

The nature park was more neighborhood-ish than I'd expected, and of course very small. However, it is a pleasant little pocket oasis in the city. I am thinking of returning in autumn, with a decent camera, when the vine maples turn.

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