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Difference between revisions of "Marquam Trail to Council Crest Hike"

From Oregon Hikers Field Guide

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[[Image:Aa_marquam_trail_sign.jpg|thumb|400px|Marquam Trail sign on Council Crest. ''(Gordon Smith)'']]
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[[Category:Northwest Oregon]]
[[Image:Marquam_Trail_Map.jpg|thumb|250px|GPS track of the Marquam Trail. (click to enlarge)]]
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[[Category:Portland Area]]
[[Image:E_trail.jpg|thumb|250px|Scenery in Marquam Nature Park. ''(Gordon Smith)'']]
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[[Image:D-bridge.jpg|thumb|250px|One of several bridges along the trail. ''(Gordon Smith)'']]
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[[Category:Portland]]
 
[[Category:Portland]]
[[Category:Portland Hikes]]
 
[[Category:Southwest Portland]]
 
 
[[Category:Urban Hikes]]
 
[[Category:Urban Hikes]]
 
[[Category:Viewpoint Hikes]]
 
[[Category:Viewpoint Hikes]]
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[[Category:Moderate Hikes]]
 
[[Category:Moderate Hikes]]
 
[[Category:Family Hikes]]
 
[[Category:Family Hikes]]
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[[Category:Public Transit]]
 
[[Category:Hikes]]
 
[[Category:Hikes]]
  
{{Start point|Marquam Trail Trailhead (at Terwilliger)}}
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[[Image:Aa_marquam_trail_sign.jpg|thumb|400px|Marquam Trail sign on Council Crest ''(Gordon Smith)'']]
 +
[[Image:E_trail.jpg|thumb|250px|Scenery in Marquam Nature Park ''(Gordon Smith)'']]
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[[Image:D-bridge.jpg|thumb|250px|One of several bridges along the trail ''(Gordon Smith)'']]
 +
[[Image:MarquamLoop2.jpg|thumb|250px|Split-rail switchbacks, Marquam Nature Park ''(bobcat)'']]
 +
[[Image:Marquam_Trail_Map.jpg|thumb|400px|GPS track of the Marquam Trail (click to enlarge)]]
 +
 
 +
{{Start point|Marquam Trailhead}}
 
* End point: [[Council Crest]]
 
* End point: [[Council Crest]]
 
* Trail Log: [[Marquam Trail to Council Crest Hike/Log|Trail Log]]
 
* Trail Log: [[Marquam Trail to Council Crest Hike/Log|Trail Log]]
 
* Hike Type: Out-and-back
 
* Hike Type: Out-and-back
{{Distance|6.4 miles}}
+
{{Distance|5.8 miles}}
 
{{Elevation gain|1100 feet}}  
 
{{Elevation gain|1100 feet}}  
 +
* High point: 1,073 feet
 
{{Difficulty|Moderate}}
 
{{Difficulty|Moderate}}
 
* Seasons: All
 
* Seasons: All
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* Backpackable: No
 
* Backpackable: No
 
* Crowded: Not usually
 
* Crowded: Not usually
<GPSTrack>Marquam Trail to Council Crest Hike</GPSTrack>
 
  
 
=== Hike Description ===
 
=== Hike Description ===
Winding its way through a patchwork of city parks and greenspaces, the Marquam Trail stretches over five miles through peaceful, secluded forests in Southwest Portland. As part of the city's 40-Mile Loop trail system it connects the Terwilliger Trail in the south with the Wildwood Trail to the north. This Field Guide entry details the southern portion of the trail, from Terwilliger Blvd. to [[Council Crest]]. The majority of the hike is in the Marquam Nature Park, and the upper third of it is on a section of trail that is also part of the [[Council Crest Hike]], which starts from a different trailhead.<br><br>
+
Wending its way through a patchwork of city parks and greenspaces, the Marquam Trail stretches over five miles through peaceful, secluded forests in Southwest Portland. As part of the city's 40-Mile Loop trail system, it connects the Terwilliger Trail in the south with the Wildwood Trail to the north. This Field Guide entry details the southern portion of the trail, from the [[Marquam Trailhead]] on Terwilliger Boulevard to [[Council Crest]]. The majority of the hike is in the Marquam Nature Park, and the upper third of it is on a section of trail that is also part of the [[Council Crest Hike]], a shorter hike which begins from a different trailhead.
Easily one of Portland's best close-in hikes, the Marquam Trail is as pleasant as any in Forest Park and features an outstanding four-mountain view from Council Crest Park, once the site of a [http://www.pdxhistory.com/html/council_crest.html popular amusement park.] The hike has about 1100 feet of total elevation gain, so it's perfect for anyone looking for a good workout without expending the time or gas to reach hikes farther afield. It's also a perfect winter hike for those rainy, foggy days when you can't buy a view in the Columbia Gorge. Bonus: the trilliums are outstanding in early spring!<br><br>
+
 
Starting from the [[Marquam Trail Trailhead (at Terwilliger)]], the trail climbs through dense forest that feels secluded even though it's within a stones throw of OHSU. After about a mile you will reach Marquam Hill Road. The trail splits here; you can either go left up the road for about a tenth of a mile to pick up the trail again, or you can take a shorter route by going downhill to the right a hundred yards and pick up the trail there. If you take the shorter route [http://portlandhikersfieldguide.com/w/images/0/05/G_marquam_hill_2.jpg stay left of the guard rail] just past the water tank. The shorter route switchbacks down into a ravine. At the bottom follow the old access road a hundred feet or so [http://portlandhikersfieldguide.com/w/images/1/18/Stairs_in_ravine.jpg to the stairs] and continue up the other side of the ravine. You'll soon come to a "Y" shaped junction that is not marked. Be sure to [http://portlandhikersfieldguide.com/w/images/3/31/Stay_right.jpg stay right here] or you'll just circle back to Marquam Hill Road. From this point on the trail is well marked and easy to follow. You will cross three more streets before reaching Council Crest. Here's a PDF of a [http://www.ohsu.edu/greenteam/mnp_trail_map.pdf nice brochure & map] produced by the Friends of Marquam Nature Park. There's quite a labyrinth of trails in this park, so you might want to print out the map and take it with you. Most of the junctions are marked though, so it's pretty easy to stay on track.<br><br>
+
Easily one of Portland's best close-in hikes, the Marquam Trail is as pleasant as any in the West Hills and, on clear days, features an outstanding five-mountain view from Council Crest Park, once the site of a [http://www.pdxhistory.com/html/council_crest.html popular amusement park]. The hike has about 1,100 feet of total elevation gain, so it's perfect for anyone looking for a good workout without expending the time or gas to reach hikes farther afield. It's also a perfect winter hike for those rainy, foggy days when you can't buy a view in the Columbia Gorge. Bonus: The trilliums are outstanding in early spring!
Enjoy!
+
 
 +
Starting from the [[Marquam Trailhead]], the trail climbs through dense forest that feels secluded even though it's within a stone's throw of OHSU. Douglas-fir, western red-cedar, and big-leaf maples dominate the canopy at this point, and vine maple and Indian plum leaf out in the understory in the spring. Head up along a shallow gully, and cross a couple of streams. Look for blooming trilliums and violets in spring. Keep right at the [[Marquam-Flicker Trail Lower Junction]], and follow the trail as it drops above a gully and then crosses a large footbridge over a creek supporting a salmonberry thicket. Head up along another gully, and then drop again to cross a second footbridge. Switchback up the opposite slope, and come to the four-way [[Marquam-Flicker Trail Upper Junction]]: Going right will take you to a minor trailhead on S.W. 12th Avenue, and to the left the Flicker Trail crosses a massive bridge. Continue straight, and weave more steeply up the slope in a carpet of ivy. Soon reach Marquam Hill Road and cross it to a [[Marquam Hill Water Tank|water tank]]. Take the chip path behind a screen of arbor vitae, pass the gate to the water tank, and find the Marquam Trail leading downhill into Marquam Gulch.
 +
 
 +
Nine switchbacks take you down to a wide trail, where you'll make a left. Cross the creek in Marquam Gulch, and ascend some steps to another junction, where you'll make a right. Cross a footbridge, and drop a little to make a traverse before keeping left at the next junction. Continue along the slope, and make four switchbacks up a trail bordered by split-rail fencing. Mossy big-leaf maples rustle overhead. Cross a gully, and keep left at a junction to continue on the Marquam Trail. Another four switchbacks will take you past a memorial rock to Rusty and Dan Goldy and some steps at Sherwood Drive. You're now out of Marquam Nature Park.
 +
 
 +
Cross Sherwood to resume the trail and cross a footbridge. A couple of switchbacks take you into a gully, and then you'll switchback again to rise and then drop slightly under Douglas-firs, cedars, hemlocks, and maples with an Oregon grape/sword fern understory. Another two switchbacks take you to Fairmount Boulevard. Cross to a Marquam Trail sign, and traverse along a leafy hillside to reach Greenway Avenue. Directly cross this road, and switchback up three times to a junction near the off-leash area at Council Crest Park. Make a left to leave the Marquam Trail, pass through the off-leash area, and cross a road to arrive at the summit area of [[Council Crest]]. From the small viewing plaza, there are some views to the Tualatin Valley, the Chehalem Hills, and also to downtown Portland and Vancouver, Washington. On a clear day, [[Mount Hood]] can be seen to the east and, far to the south, the snow-capped summit of [[Mount Jefferson]]. The three closest Washington stratovolcanoes, [[Mount Saint Helens]], [[Mount Rainier]], and [[Mount Adams]], can be discerned to the north. Just below is the mother and child statue (stolen in the 1980s and recovered 10 years later).
 +
 
  
 
=== Maps ===
 
=== Maps ===
{{Hikemaps|latitude=45.491|longitude=-122.687}}
+
{{Hikemaps|latitude=45.50302|longitude=-122.69175}}
* See the image of the GPS track on the right.
+
* [http://www.fmnp.org/images/MNP%20MAP%20FINAL%20p2.pdf  Marquam Nature Park Trail Map (Friends of Marquam Nature Park)]
 +
* Green Trails Maps: ''Forest Park, Hoyt Arboretum, Washington Park  #426S'' (new trails not shown)
 +
* [http://www.portlandoregon.gov/transportation/article/323776  Southwest Portland Walk Map (Portland Bureau of Transportation)]
  
 
=== Regulations or Restrictions, etc. ===
 
=== Regulations or Restrictions, etc. ===
None.
+
* Two-hour parking on Terwilliger
 +
* Dogs on leash
 +
* Park hours: 5:00 a.m. to midnight
  
 
{{TripReports|{{PAGENAME}}}}
 
{{TripReports|{{PAGENAME}}}}
* (Click [http://portlandhikers.com/forums/AddPost.aspx?ForumID=8 here] to add your own)
 
  
 
{{RelatedDiscussions|{{PAGENAME}}}}
 
{{RelatedDiscussions|{{PAGENAME}}}}
* (Click [http://portlandhikers.com/forums/AddPost.aspx?ForumID=141 here] to ask a question or start a conversation)
 
  
 
=== Guidebooks that cover this hike ===
 
=== Guidebooks that cover this hike ===
* ''50 Hiking Trails, Portland and Northwest Oregon'' by Don and Roberta Lowe
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* ''60 Hikes Within 60 Miles'' by Paul Gerald
 +
* ''PDX Hiking 365'' by Matt Reeder
 +
* ''Best Easy Day Hikes: Portland, Oregon'' by Lizann Dunegan
 +
* ''100 Hikes in Northwest Oregon & Southwest Washington'' by William L. Sullivan
 +
* ''Nature Walks In and Around Portland'' by Karen & Terry Whitehill
 +
* ''Peaceful Places: Portland'' by Paul Gerald
 +
* ''Take a Hike: Portland'' by Barbara I. Bond
 +
* ''Walk There! 50 Treks In and Around Portland and Vancouver'' edited by Laura O. Foster
 +
* ''50 Hiking Trails: Portland and Northwest Oregon'' by Don and Roberta Lowe
  
 
=== More Links ===
 
=== More Links ===
* Portland Parks and Recreation [http://www.portlandonline.com/parks/finder/index.cfm?action=ViewPark&PropertyID=251 Marquam Nature Park]
+
* [http://www.portlandonline.com/parks/finder/index.cfm?PropertyID=251&action=ViewPark  Marquam Nature Park (Portland Parks)]
* Portland Parks and Recreation [http://www.portlandonline.com/parks/finder/index.cfm?action=ViewPark&PropertyID=24 Council Crest Park]  
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* [http://www.fmnp.org/  Friends of Marquam Nature Park]
* 40-Mile Loop [http://www.40mileloop.org/trail_marquam.htm Marquam Nature Park page]
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* [http://www.40mileloop.org/trail_marquam.htm  Marquam Nature Park (40-mile Loop)]
* The No Ivy League [http://www.noivyleague.com/Pages/volunteering.html Ivy Removal Project]
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* [http://www.oregonlive.com/travel/index.ssf/2016/07/the_one_trail_that_connects_we.html  "Marquam Trail takes hikers through west Portland's iconic parks" (Oregon Live)]
 +
* [http://blog.oregonlive.com/terryrichard/2007/04/spring_on_the_marquam_trail.html  "Spring on the Marquam Trail" (Oregon Live)]
 +
* [https://www.portlandoregon.gov/parks/finder/index.cfm?PropertyID=24 Council Crest Park (Portland Parks & Recreation)]
 +
* [http://www.pdxhistory.com/html/council_crest.html  Council Crest: Dreamland of the Northwest (PdxHistory)]
 +
* [http://www.pdxhistory.com/html/streetcars.html Portland Trolleys & Streetcars (PdxHistory)]
 +
 
  
 
=== Contributors ===
 
=== Contributors ===
 
* [[User:sparklehorse|sparklehorse]] (creator)
 
* [[User:sparklehorse|sparklehorse]] (creator)

Latest revision as of 18:31, 4 November 2018

Marquam Trail sign on Council Crest (Gordon Smith)
Scenery in Marquam Nature Park (Gordon Smith)
One of several bridges along the trail (Gordon Smith)
Split-rail switchbacks, Marquam Nature Park (bobcat)
GPS track of the Marquam Trail (click to enlarge)
  • Start point: Marquam TrailheadRoad.JPG
  • End point: Council Crest
  • Trail Log: Trail Log
  • Hike Type: Out-and-back
  • Distance: 5.8 miles
  • Elevation gain: 1100 feet
  • High point: 1,073 feet
  • Difficulty: Moderate
  • Seasons: All
  • Family Friendly: Yes
  • Backpackable: No
  • Crowded: Not usually

Contents

Hike Description

Wending its way through a patchwork of city parks and greenspaces, the Marquam Trail stretches over five miles through peaceful, secluded forests in Southwest Portland. As part of the city's 40-Mile Loop trail system, it connects the Terwilliger Trail in the south with the Wildwood Trail to the north. This Field Guide entry details the southern portion of the trail, from the Marquam Trailhead on Terwilliger Boulevard to Council Crest. The majority of the hike is in the Marquam Nature Park, and the upper third of it is on a section of trail that is also part of the Council Crest Hike, a shorter hike which begins from a different trailhead.

Easily one of Portland's best close-in hikes, the Marquam Trail is as pleasant as any in the West Hills and, on clear days, features an outstanding five-mountain view from Council Crest Park, once the site of a popular amusement park. The hike has about 1,100 feet of total elevation gain, so it's perfect for anyone looking for a good workout without expending the time or gas to reach hikes farther afield. It's also a perfect winter hike for those rainy, foggy days when you can't buy a view in the Columbia Gorge. Bonus: The trilliums are outstanding in early spring!

Starting from the Marquam Trailhead, the trail climbs through dense forest that feels secluded even though it's within a stone's throw of OHSU. Douglas-fir, western red-cedar, and big-leaf maples dominate the canopy at this point, and vine maple and Indian plum leaf out in the understory in the spring. Head up along a shallow gully, and cross a couple of streams. Look for blooming trilliums and violets in spring. Keep right at the Marquam-Flicker Trail Lower Junction, and follow the trail as it drops above a gully and then crosses a large footbridge over a creek supporting a salmonberry thicket. Head up along another gully, and then drop again to cross a second footbridge. Switchback up the opposite slope, and come to the four-way Marquam-Flicker Trail Upper Junction: Going right will take you to a minor trailhead on S.W. 12th Avenue, and to the left the Flicker Trail crosses a massive bridge. Continue straight, and weave more steeply up the slope in a carpet of ivy. Soon reach Marquam Hill Road and cross it to a water tank. Take the chip path behind a screen of arbor vitae, pass the gate to the water tank, and find the Marquam Trail leading downhill into Marquam Gulch.

Nine switchbacks take you down to a wide trail, where you'll make a left. Cross the creek in Marquam Gulch, and ascend some steps to another junction, where you'll make a right. Cross a footbridge, and drop a little to make a traverse before keeping left at the next junction. Continue along the slope, and make four switchbacks up a trail bordered by split-rail fencing. Mossy big-leaf maples rustle overhead. Cross a gully, and keep left at a junction to continue on the Marquam Trail. Another four switchbacks will take you past a memorial rock to Rusty and Dan Goldy and some steps at Sherwood Drive. You're now out of Marquam Nature Park.

Cross Sherwood to resume the trail and cross a footbridge. A couple of switchbacks take you into a gully, and then you'll switchback again to rise and then drop slightly under Douglas-firs, cedars, hemlocks, and maples with an Oregon grape/sword fern understory. Another two switchbacks take you to Fairmount Boulevard. Cross to a Marquam Trail sign, and traverse along a leafy hillside to reach Greenway Avenue. Directly cross this road, and switchback up three times to a junction near the off-leash area at Council Crest Park. Make a left to leave the Marquam Trail, pass through the off-leash area, and cross a road to arrive at the summit area of Council Crest. From the small viewing plaza, there are some views to the Tualatin Valley, the Chehalem Hills, and also to downtown Portland and Vancouver, Washington. On a clear day, Mount Hood can be seen to the east and, far to the south, the snow-capped summit of Mount Jefferson. The three closest Washington stratovolcanoes, Mount Saint Helens, Mount Rainier, and Mount Adams, can be discerned to the north. Just below is the mother and child statue (stolen in the 1980s and recovered 10 years later).


Maps

Regulations or Restrictions, etc.

  • Two-hour parking on Terwilliger
  • Dogs on leash
  • Park hours: 5:00 a.m. to midnight

Trip Reports

Related Discussions / Q&A

Guidebooks that cover this hike

  • 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles by Paul Gerald
  • PDX Hiking 365 by Matt Reeder
  • Best Easy Day Hikes: Portland, Oregon by Lizann Dunegan
  • 100 Hikes in Northwest Oregon & Southwest Washington by William L. Sullivan
  • Nature Walks In and Around Portland by Karen & Terry Whitehill
  • Peaceful Places: Portland by Paul Gerald
  • Take a Hike: Portland by Barbara I. Bond
  • Walk There! 50 Treks In and Around Portland and Vancouver edited by Laura O. Foster
  • 50 Hiking Trails: Portland and Northwest Oregon by Don and Roberta Lowe

More Links


Contributors

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.