Trail Talk is a monthly column about hiking in and around the Jacksonville Woodlands in Jacksonville, Oregon.

East ART is a GO! – by Diana Coogle, Applegate Trails Association

Could there be any more exciting news to the Applegate Trails Association than the recent go-ahead from the BLM to start construction of the East ART? We are stoked!

The East ART is the first leg of the Applegate Ridge Trail that we hope to construct from Jacksonville to Grants Pass. Jumping through BLM hoops, laying […]

By | March 3rd, 2017|Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

The Rock Underfoot – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – March 2017

Oh, but if we could hear what the stones have to tell us. So often we walk along the trails admiring the flora and fauna, ignoring the living rock beneath our feet. Sub-consciously we might appreciate the rock cycle and the millennia needed to morph sandstone […]

By | February 28th, 2017|Featured Stories, Trail Talk|0 Comments

The Big Snow of ’17 – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – February 2017

By the time folks read this, January’s snow in Jacksonville will be a memory. One could argue that Forest Park never looked better, especially after the gray days of late December. Who would have thought that “Ski Jacksonville” would be a thing? Yet, there was that nice snowpack and miles of […]

By | January 4th, 2017|Now, Trail Talk|2 Comments

Welcoming the Rain on Our Trails! – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – December 2016/January 2017

A recent October day, rainy and blustery like so many other October days this year, found me traveling along Cook and Green Trail, a Forest Service Trail that abuts the Red Buttes Wilderness just over the California border above Applegate Lake. Unlike many trails in other areas, […]

By | November 30th, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Time of Seasonal Change… Great Time to Hike – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – November 2016

Aldo Leopold, in Sand County Almanac, tells of exploring once-developed areas that have been reclaimed by wilderness. And surprisingly, it’s not all that long after humans have left the area. Here, around Jacksonville, we find wild areas of a similar nature. Where our predecessors had mining ditches, houses and barns, roads, […]

By | October 24th, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Eagle Scouts Accomplishing Great Things in Forest Park – by Tony Hess

The Forest Park and the City of Jacksonville have been the beneficiaries of two Eagle Scout projects this year. An Eagle Scout project is one of many requirements a scout must complete to achieve this highly-respected rank. As defined by the Boy Scouts of America, the project purpose is “To learn leadership skills, or to […]

By | October 1st, 2016|Community, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Enjoying Forest Park in Fall – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – October 2016

A recent fast-pack adventure through the Strawberry Mt. Wilderness made me appreciate the well-maintained trail system of Jacksonville’s parks all the more. Steeple-chasing through downed timber on overgrown trails that disappear into brush fields becomes a bit work-like. A follow-up trip into Sky Lakes saw more of the same. So here’s […]

By | October 1st, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

2016 National Public Lands Day Event at Sterling Mine Ditch Trail

BLM is hosting a National Public Lands Day event on the Sterling Mine Ditch Trail—with help from SUTA on Saturday, September 24, 2016, from 8:30am-1:00pm.

Volunteers will help re-route a steep section of trail that currently goes over the tunnel. At the 2014 Public Lands Day event, we re-routed the trail on the other side of […]

By | September 22nd, 2016|Event News, Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Forest Park Guided Hikes Going Great! – by Kandee McClain

The first three Forest Park Guided Hikes have been well-attended, and it has been fun to meet new trail enthusiasts as well as to see some favorite trails through eyes that are seeing them for the first time. The new Forest Park maps have been a hit and some of our new hikers have been […]

By | July 26th, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Time for a Walk in the Woods – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – August 2016

It’s summer…a great time to sneak out in the coolness of dawn and dusk for a walk in the woods. Be assured that you’ll find many other forest critters doing the same. So where in Forest Park are you least likely to run into other hikers or bikers? Certainly, as you […]

By | July 26th, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Guided Forest Park Hike is July 18, 2016

If you want to start-off the third week of July with a friendly group of people, outstanding scenery and some exercise, join us for another guided hike in the Forest Park! The hike is set for Monday, July 18—meet at 8:30am at P-3 (parking lot 3 on Norling Creek Road) in the Forest Park and […]

By | June 29th, 2016|Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Hike to the Top of Mt. Elijah with Applegate Trails Association – by Diana Coogle

The recent excitement ATA generated from our May hike on the proposed Jack-Ash and Applegate Ridge Trails hasn’t blotted-out our excitement about the hikes we lead on currently-established Applegate trails. It’s now my turn as hike leader on July 10, 2016 and I’m going up Mt. Elijah, via the Sturgis Fork and Boundary trails… and […]

By | June 29th, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Great New Trails to Hike in Forest Park – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – July 2016

Forest Park is unlike most city parks in that there aren’t amenities like flush toilets and playgrounds. As the name implies, it is a park in the forest, and is designed to be a place where folks can enjoy a walk (or run or bike) in the woods. […]

By | June 29th, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Beekman Arboretum Nature Walk and Clean-Up

Come join us for the first annual Beekman Arboretum Nature Walk and Clean-Up event on Saturday, July 16th, 2016!

Join Jacksonville residents Lauren Kemple, Becka Kem and Rhonda Brown for a short nature walk followed by voluntary arboretum clean-up. You’ll stroll through the arboretum, identifying many plants and learn about their origin and medicinal and culinary […]

By | June 28th, 2016|Event News, Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Bella Bucks Benefit Bridge

In early June 2016, Jacksonville Woodlands Association received a generous $1300 donation from Bella Union Restaurant. When Bella Union co-owner Christian Hamilton wrote the check, he said he was very proud to have done so! The Bella’s Jay Stumpff told the Review that the donation was a gift to help the JWA continue its excellent […]

By | June 28th, 2016|Community, Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Exploring Forest Park – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – June 2016

Ok. So you’re a first-time visitor to Jacksonville’s Forest Park. Yes, you’ve heard the talk about Jacksonville’s claim to being the “Hiking Capital of Southern Oregon,” and you want to experience the trails in the Jackson Creek Watershed. Where to start?

As you drive up Reservoir Road […]

By | May 31st, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Guided Hike Series at Jacksonville’s Forest Park

Join us for a guided hike in Jacksonville’s Forest Park to be held on Monday, June 20, 2016 beginning at 8:30 am.  This is the second hike in a series of 5 this season, all held on the third Monday of the month and sponsored by the Jacksonville Parks and Recreation Committee. Take a right […]

By | May 25th, 2016|Event News, Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

On the Civility of Trails – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – May 2016

No longer a line item in most governmental budgets, trail maintenance for hiking trails across the US has become the responsibility of the user groups. It’s not always an onerous task; indeed, it’s healthy work in the out-of-doors, a wonderful diversion from time spent in stale gyms, […]

By | May 1st, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

2016 JWA Hike-a-Thon Wrap-up – by Gayle Stokes

Did you know that the original Britt Gardens, designed by Jacksonville pioneer photographer and horticulturist Peter Britt, was once a destination attraction in the Northwest? Portlanders would make special train trips to come see the gardens.

Did you know there was once a brewery that stood next to the sidewalk going up to the Britt grounds, […]

By | May 1st, 2016|Featured Stories, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Help Spruce-Up Riverside Trails at Cantrall Buckley Park on April 23

It’s our birthday! On April 23rd, the Applegate Trails Association (ATA) celebrates 5 years of community hikes, events and trail building. Our first project for 2016 is sprucing-up the two riverside loop trails at your local, community-run Cantrall Buckley Park. The trails just need some trimming and light tread work to make them ready for […]

By | April 21st, 2016|Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

The Trees of Forest Park – by Clayton Gillette

A wiser man than most once observed that if one can’t see the forest for the trees, then maybe one should focus on just one tree and the forest will come into view in all its splendor. And that is the essence of living in the moment…being aware of the one thing you can see, […]

By | March 30th, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

26th Hike-a-Thon to Feature New 5K Fun Run – by Bob Budesa

Trail Talk – April 2016

What in the world does THAT mean?

Well, let me explain. The Jacksonville Woodlands Hike-a-Thon is 26 years-old this year, and in an attempt to encourage a younger participation and hopefully new members, one of our board members, Omer Kem, suggested adding a “Fun Run.” Oxymoron? To some, I suppose.

The 26th Jacksonville […]

By | March 30th, 2016|Trail Talk|0 Comments

SOHS Healthy History Hikes: The Gin Lin Trail

Jeff LaLande strips away the years to reveal Chinese gold fever in a three quarter mile hike along the Gin Lin Trail in the Applegate. LaLande discovered many of these sites in his years of service as a Forest Service Archaeologist. The Healthy History Hikes series is co-sponsored by the Southern Oregon Historical Society and […]

By | March 18th, 2016|Event News, Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Safety First – by Omer Kem

Trail Talk – March 2016

The trails in the Jacksonville Woodlands and Forest Park are beautiful this time of year. “Misty,” “rainy,” “snowy,” “windy,” “muddy,” and “damp” are all great ways to describe them as winter makes it way to spring. There are a few simple things you can do before heading out to […]

By | March 2nd, 2016|Featured Stories, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Winter Hiking in the Forest Park – by Clayton Gillette

Trail Talk – February 2016

Winter finds Forest Park subdued and enticing. The crackling crunch of summer’s madrone leaves, followed by the deep rustle of ankle-deep big-leaf maple and oak leaves is a distant echo. Blooms of the forgotten spring sleep under a carpet of forest litter and snow, yet swelling […]

By | January 28th, 2016|Featured Stories, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Trail Heaven – by Omer Kem

Trail Talk – Dec 2015/Jan 2016

Let me start by introducing myself! My name is Omer Kem, husband/dad/business owner in that order. My wife, son and I recently moved back to Jacksonville after spending two years away living in Ashland. We are so very excited to be back in what we feel is “trail heaven.”

My commitment […]

By | December 1st, 2015|Featured Stories, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Forest Park is an Off-Road Wonderland!

Trail Talk – November 2015

If you were thinking that winter would bring your cycling season to an end, you may want to reconsider! Jacksonville’s Forest Park offers miles of trails to be explored, and opportunities to keep your level of fitness maintained until next spring!

Now, keep in mind that the following information is recommended for […]

By | October 29th, 2015|Trail Talk|0 Comments

New Directional Signage is Another Forest Park Improvement Project

Trail Talk – October 2015

The Forest Park is a big area, 1,100 acres to be exact. With many sloped hillsides, its actual size is even larger with twenty-four miles of trails spread-out over twenty-two trails…park hikers and bikers can really get to some far-out locations.

In the early […]

By | September 30th, 2015|Featured Stories, Trail Talk|0 Comments

ATA Offers Day-Long Educational Event at Cantrall Buckley Park

Recognizing that there’s much to learn about this beautiful area we live in and that many people who live here have extensive knowledge about it, the Applegate Trails Association has organized an educational seminar—and a festive event—called “The Call of the Wild,” at Cantrall Buckley Park on September 19, 2015 from 9:30am-4:00pm.

The event will get-off […]

By | August 28th, 2015|Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Hikers Love Trail Loops

Trail Talk – September 2015

It’s often said that what trail hikers love the most is running streams and trail loops. Of course right now, in this super dry spell, running streams rarely exist, and won’t until the fall rains return. The good news is that in the Forest Park, there are some short parts of […]

By | August 28th, 2015|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Applegate Trails Association Takes You to the Middle Fork Trail

There’s no place like the Middle Fork National Recreation Trail on the Middle Fork of the Applegate River—a streamside trail that then turns and meanders uphill through big trees. An emerald swimming hole with big rocks and a splashing little waterfall is a treat on a hot hike, and there’s lots of shade in the […]

By | July 29th, 2015|Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Jacksonville: The Hiking Capital of Southern Oregon

Trail Talk – August 2015

The City of Jacksonville has always had a strong commitment to providing a well-constructed and maintained city parks system for residents and visitors alike. The Parks, Recreation, and Visitors Services Committee is aptly named. From Doc Griffin Park with its spray-park and playground equipment, Cottage Street Park, to the Pheasant Meadows […]

By | July 29th, 2015|Trail Talk|0 Comments

July ATA Loop-Route Hike at Red Lily Vineyards

Applegate Trails Association is proud to announce a $10,000 grant award from REI to build the East ART, the first section of the non-motorized Applegate Ridge Trail envisioned from Cathedral Hills in Grants Pass to Jacksonville. We are so excited!

So the organization is thriving, not only with trail building but with hiking on existing trails. […]

By | July 3rd, 2015|Now, The Wine Scene, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Our Trails – So Much More Than a Place to Hike!

Trail Talk – June 2015

The Woodlands and Forest Park are part of the city parks system and provide venues for more experiences than just trails to hike. Both parks are rich displays of Jacksonville’s history. The Woodlands showcases the start of the gold mining that led to the city’s birth in […]

By | May 27th, 2015|Featured Stories, Trail Talk|0 Comments

There’s Bugs in Them Thar Trees!

Trail Talk – May 2015

Those of you who walk in the Woodlands, specifically the Sarah Zigler trail, no doubt saw the decks of logs at the far end near the parking lot last month. Those trees were damaged by the Western Pine Beetle (WPB), an insect that unfortunately infests pine forests across 10 western states.

The […]

By | April 29th, 2015|Trail Talk|0 Comments

A Celebration of 25 Years in Support of the Jacksonville Woodlands – by Charles Wilson, JWA President

For the past 21 years, on a weekend in April, throngs of Jacksonville Woodlands’ users have laced up their walking shoes and hit the trails in celebration of an amazing community resource. On Saturday, April 11, at 9:30am, they’ll do it again. This year’s annual Hike-A-Thon celebrates the successful private and public agency partnerships in […]

By | April 8th, 2015|Event News, Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

It’s Easy to Volunteer on the Jacksonville Woodland Trails

Trail Talk – April 2015

That was quite a little one-day downpour we had at the end of February, wasn’t it? I was pleasantly surprised to not see trees strewn across the woodland trails following the storm. Softened soil, coupled with high winds, is a certain recipe for blowdown, but […]

By | March 31st, 2015|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Guides to the Jacksonville Parks Trails

Trail Talk – March 2015

Learning how to get around in the Jacksonville Woodlands and the Forest Park trail systems can be challenging to first-time visitors. Even returning hikers and mountain bikers enjoying these diversified natural areas can get confused in the myriad of trails. After all, there are 15 miles of trails on […]

By | February 27th, 2015|Featured Stories, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Fall in Love with Jacksonville Woodlands and the Forest Park Trails

Trail Talk – February 2015

A great way to celebrate Valentine’s Day (or any day) with a loved one is to take a hike on one of the Jacksonville Woodlands or Forest Park trails.

We are pleased to invite you to check-out the two new interpretive panels on the three-quarter mile-long Zigler Trail in the Woodlands system. […]

By | January 27th, 2015|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Got Trail Ideas?

Trail Talk – December 2014/January 2015

Thiis is the time of year the Jacksonville Woodlands Association wraps-up our projects and plans our workload for next year, which is just around the corner!

That being said, I thought I’d throw the ‘suggestion box’ out to you, the trail users. If you have ideas for improvements, or maintenance issues […]

By | December 20th, 2014|Now, Trail Talk|0 Comments

Trail Talk, November 2014

The Forest Park continues to improve and expand under the guidance and work of the Forest Park Volunteers and the city Parks Department. The volunteers have identified several new trail locations needed in the Forest Park. These new trail routes are developed by first studying the trails map and then using the National Geographic TOPO […]

By | November 6th, 2014|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Bob goes off the beaten path… on volunteering! – by Bob Budesa

Trail Talk – October 2014

I remember 45 years ago, sitting peacefully tying flies for an order Abercrombe & Fitch had put in, and my mother saying, “Mrs. Riley could sure use a hand today running some errands. I told her you’d be right over.” Oh man…she did it again! Mom knew how to get results […]

By | September 26th, 2014|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Running the Forest Park Trails – by Clayton Gillette with Bob Budesa

Trail Talk – September 2014

One thinks of recreation in Jacksonville with a strong bias toward wining, dining, shopping, and concert-going. Yet, for the outdoor enthusiast, there’s a wide choice of areas for hiking and running away from crowded areas. Most folks know of the Britt Trails, but across Highway 238 to the west and north, […]

By | September 4th, 2014|Trail Talk|0 Comments

Cool Hikes on a Hot Day

Trail Talk – August 2014

There are many great hiking trails to choose from in the Jacksonville area, but when the daytime temperatures are in the 90’s or higher, it becomes more of a challenge avoiding the heat. Here are some suggested hikes to keep the heat at bay:

If you’re a 7:00am hiker or runner, the […]

By | August 12th, 2014|Trail Talk|0 Comments