Sunday, July 5, 2015

Easyish Walk through Ankeny Wildlife Refuge near Salem, Oregon

Where we went and why

Every Sunday we make a trip to Albany and we try to tie in a hike along the way. We're running out of hikes, so we're spreading out and taking the long way around so we can see something new. We went through Detroit and hit this Wildlife Refuge on the way from Salem to Albany. The book listed it as a 2.2 mile hike with no elevation change. It sounded perfect for a nice easy and short hike.

The Hike

You start off on a packed dirt path, but pretty quickly you encounter a choice. Well, it's a choice if it's not during the goose winter season. Your choice is to go right onto a boardwalk through the forest or straight into a field. We picked right because that's what he book said. The path is on a raised boardwalk through the trees. It's made out of wood and has chicken wire over it to help with traction. It made me a little nauseated at first, but I got over it. The boardwalk will take you to a duck blind where you can see a lot of ducks at the right time of year. We were not there during the right time of year though. We did get to see a couple ducks, but not at the duck blind. We hear birds singing the entire time we were there. At the end of the boardwalk, you turn around or during the summer, you can make a loop out of it by walking through a field. We chose to walk through the field.

The path through the field was rather interesting. It's basically like a giant hay field with paths cut down. Not all of he grass got picked up after it was cut which made the terrain a bit sucky. The ground was also bit uneven and had a bunch of divots in it. I'm not sure if the path is the same every year since it's just a path through a giant field, but the path we took, wasn't 2.2 miles. You could wander around for several hours in this place exploring the different paths. You can't really get lost. We had fun, but we were ready for it to be over. It was warm and humid and the terrain sucked for us. The trip was worth it through because it was nice listening to the birds and we got some awesome wildflower pictures.

How to get there

It's not too far off of I5. We took the Talbot exit. Then we took Jorgenson to Winter and then turned into the Wildlife Refuge. 

Polar M400

We stopped so many times to take pictures so the speed and heart rate part of the grid was obnoxious to look at so I just took it off and left the elevation. It looks like it was hilly since we started off at such a low elevation. When you start off so low, you really see the difference in even small inclines. I didn't feel like we were even on an incline at all. I wish the grid would be this sensitive to elevation changes when starting out at a higher elevation.

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