Monday, January 8, 2018

White Rabbit & Mike Uhtoff Trails

January 7, 2018

We began our 2018 hiking year by heading over to Ashland and hiking at the Oredson-Todd Woods and Siskiyou Mountain Park.

And we're off....let the 2018 hiking year begin!
In looking back, it has been over two years since we last hiked here.  There is a network of trails, much like the Jacksonville Forest Park, Jacksonville Woodlands, and Cathedral Hills Park, that offer you multiple choices for your hiking route.  Katie also enjoys that it is dog friendly.

Where the clouds and the hills meet.

One very large boulder along the White Rabbit trail
Many of the trails have names from the story of Alice in Wonderland.  We mainly hiked two trails -- the White Rabbit trail and the Mike Uhtoff trail.  The White Rabbit is from Alice in Wonderland, Mike Uhtoff is not.  Mike was the Portland Audubon's first managing director and later moved to Ashland where he helped the city acquire Siskiyou Mountain Park as open space parkland. Thank you Mike!

Proof that there was blue sky.....for a few minutes.
We began our 5.4 mile loop hike at the Lupine Drive trailhead and quickly made our way through some forested sections of the Oredson-Todd Woods.  We then crossed Clay Creek and began hiking up, up, up and up the White Rabbit trail.  That climb sure got our heart and lungs working in the cool air.  Even the sun came out, but only during our climb.

White Rabbit trail along the crest

Once we got to the "crest", the White Rabbit trail wandered through the woods of Siskiyou Mountain Park until we came to the Queen of Hearts trail which was our turnaround point today.  This short connector trail took us to the Mike Uhtoff trail which we then hiked back along and down the crest to return to Clay Creek and the trailhead.

Low bridge on the Queen of Hearts trail
 The Mike Uhtoff trail has many switchbacks (next time we will count them) while descending from the crest and also offers many opportunities to stop and view the surrounding Ashland Hills.

View along the Mike Uhtoff trail on the way down

From our experiences, we would recommend that you hike the Mike Uhtoff trail up to the crest, take the Queen of Hearts trail to connect to the White Rabbit trail, and hike that trail back to the trailhead.  For a shuttle hike you can also hike through the Siskiyou Mountain Park all the way to Lithia Park, but we have never tried that.

One last view of the surrounding Ashland hills.

Well, we never ran into anyone named Alice during our hike nor did we fall down a hole.  But we did enjoy getting out into the woods and hiking these trails, despite the cold and cloudy weather.

Trekking Together
Glenn & Carol

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