You don’t have to drive far to reach Tryon Creek State Natural Area’s nexus of hiking trails and loops, making it perfect for quick jaunts into nature. The many twisting routes here—including some for bikes and horses and some groomed enough for trail running—wind through stands of Douglas fir, maple and alder.
ROUTE: Until you know Tryon Creek’s trails, it’s best to download a map at www.oregonstateparks.org and carry it with you. For this route, head north on the Maple Ridge Trail from the Nature Center and make a right at the equestrian trail. At the next intersection, make a left, then keep right at the next fork. Cut left onto the Lewis & Clark Trail: You’ll soon cross the Terry Riley suspension bridge and head down several sets of stairs to the intersection at the High Bridge (closed through September). Pause to admire the trickle of Tryon Creek and prepare for the uphill slog on the Middle Creek Trail. Veer right at the Maple Ridge Trail, and at the Y for the Big Fir Trail, stay left. When you hit the Old Main Trail, turn left for the homestretch.
DIRECTIONS: From I-5 south, take the SW Terwilliger Blvd exit and make a right at the next two lights. Cross the Interstate and head up SW Terwilliger Blvd. Stay left where the road splits at SW Boones Ferry Rd. Take the second right at the roundabout near Lewis & Clark Law School and follow the signs to Tryon Creek State Natural Area.