Kelly point park vtnmii

Activity: Walking the dog

Why it’s great: Situated near the confluence of the Columbia and Willamette Rivers, this 104-acre park offers something to keep every make and model of tail wagging. Stick to the trees, and you and your furry friend can take in a shady path bursting with springtime foliage. But if your pooch is a water dog at heart, take one of the numerous side trails down to the river, scoop up some driftwood, and enjoy some fierce volleys of fetch. From a human perspective, the spectacle of two mighty rivers meeting underneath Mount Hood’s craggy backdrop makes this a welcome diversion from a routine swing around the block.

Distance: Two miles

Rating: Easy

Route: Head northwest on the asphalt footpath leading out of the parking lot. After passing beneath a canopy of cottonwoods and red huckleberry bushes, you’ll hit a large open space ripe for a picnic (or a water break). Continue along the path for about one-quarter of a mile until you reach the Columbia Slough, a small tributary feeding into the Willamette. Once there, duck down toward the water to enjoy a sandy beach scene. By doubling back along the banks of the Willamette, you’ll come across a giant anchor that marks the junction of the two rivers and makes a fine photo op for you and your four-legged pal.

Getting there: Take I-5 north to exit 307 and turn left onto N Marine Drive – West. Travel 4.6 miles to N Suttle Road, following a sign for Kelley Point. For easier access to the trail, park in the second (and last) lot, located half a mile from the entrance on the left. No fees or permits required

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