Eugene, Cascades & Coast
The wait for fall foliage to hit its peak has been much like the wait for an avocado to ripen. Resounding feelings of not yet, not yet, not yet, too late echo behind our eyes as leaves that took so long to change now flutter softly to the ground. Don’t let this fall season pass you by like an avocado! Raindrops add shimmers of silver to the colorful trees that still flourish around us; their
bold tufts of red, yellow, purple and pink holding on strong as the wind billows and colder weather sets in. Set forth and seize this beautiful time of year!
Though the Eugene, Cascades & Coast weekend forecast calls for rain, it won’t stop the ghouls and goblins from coming out to play. It’s Halloween, and trick-or-treaters are ready to paint the town orange and black! In Eugene, venture downtown to compete in a pumpkin carving contest at Red Wagon Creamery. Enjoy a delicious sundae made with the ghastly holiday flavor Grave Digger and bring a jack-o-lantern to life! After you’ve finished your masterpiece pumpkin, get out and explore the ridgeline trails of South Eugene.
Start at the Blanton Ridge Trailhead and choose your own adventure from there. Hike to 52nd Street and Willamette, or continue on to the top of Spencer’s Butte.
The delightful mix of Douglas fir and big leaf maples will provide the fall contrasts of yellow and green we’ve come to appreciate in the Pacific Northwest, and get you pumped for the Duck’s football game!
Toward the Cascades, treat yourself to a soak in the natural hot springs of Cougar Reservoir. It’s no trick how relaxed this pool will make you feel, and the drive to reach it is magically wooded. Take in some local culture and stop off for a slice at the newly reopened Ike’s Pizza on the way to or from this destination.
Everybody loves a good ghost story. This Halloween, visit haunted Astoria, the wickedest place on earth! First settled in 1811, Astoria has a rich heritage of paranormal activity. Freak yourself out with tours of The Liberty Theater, Flavel Mansion and Hess Mansion. Visit the Uppertown Firefighter’s Museum where the apparition of a sleepwalking fireman who fell to his death in the 1920’s has been spotted walking through rooms in the dark of night. Once the goose bumps are gone and your blood stops running cold, get outside and explore Fort Clatsop, a national monument in the Lewis and Clark National Historical Park. Choose from several accessible trailheads, including the Clatsop Loop or the 6.5 mile Fort to Sea Trail.
The Willamette Valley is currently rain-wet and sun-kissed, birds are singing and it feels like fall. Hit the road for a lovely ride down Highway 20, affectionately called the Over The River and Through The Woods Scenic Byway. Take this pretty little stretch through the town of Lebanon and visit McDowell Creek Falls. With three waterfalls to discover and a wooden catwalk on which to perch and view them this short hike is picture perfect and will give you the healthy glow you’ll need to spend the rest of your weekend partying with the undead.
In Corvallis, get ready for 3D Zombie Horror as the Majestic Theatre presents a special Halloween show, “Wait for the Blackout”. See what kind of trouble happens in the dark as you enjoy a multitude of offerings from the Willamette Valley.
People of Portland love Sauvie Island. This rural slice of pasteurized paradise is painted for fall with a landscape boasting pumpkin patches and farm animals. Bring the family, even your dog, and get lost in the corn maze! This year, Bella Organic has created a brand new course of complicated twists and turns honoring Portland Trailblazer Jerome Kersey with a 2015 Rip City themed maze. Take a hayride, have some fun, then stretch your legs as you further explore the island. Try the Warrior Point Hike, a 7 mile round-trip trek that leads to Warrior Rock Lighthouse. Walk along beach and dirt roads through a cottonwood forest bordering the Columbia River, and keep your eyes
peeled for the Sauvie Island Spaceship!
The Gorge’s lush terrain is spectacular, everywhere you turn a leaf has changed for fall. Spend some time in nature and see that it’s true! We recommend a visit to Rooster Rock State Park, where autumn’s colors brightly blaze. Trails are shaded by canopies of huge maple and oak trees, and wildlife such as Blacktail deer graze on the swordgrass and mushrooms that grow here. Traipse through dewy meadows and beautiful forests as you trek along the Volkswalk Trail at the east end of the park. Sneak in a game of disc golf, or try your luck with cold weather wind surfing. It’s also a great place to catch fish!
Every Halloween, Bend hosts the highly anticipated Halloween Cross Crusade and Cyclo-cross Festival. It’s a winning combination of fun and mayhem as over a thousand cyclo-cross racers tear through the Old Mill District in costume and compete for points. To celebrate, finishers ages 21 and older are invited to a Halloween Warehouse Bash at Deschutes Brewery where the theme is post apocalyptic Thunder Cross. Dress to impress as you party from dusk till dawn in honor of this physical achievement.
For explorers that prefer foot travel, experience Lower Whychus Creek via Alder Springs Trailhead. Passing the head of the Metolius and following along the Deschutes River, this six mile dog friendly
loop trail includes waterfall views and spectacular canyon vistas. Be sure to come prepared as this trailhead offers no bathrooms and no water spigots.
Fall colors have reached their peak in Eastern Oregon. With the onset of recent storms, leaves will likely begin to fade and blow away quite quickly. Keeping that fact in mind, this may be the last great w
eekend for leaf hunters before winter steals the season. Higher elevations are brilliant with color right now near Anthony Lakes and the Wallowas though a light snow may fall in the coming weeks. Be prepared for the elements if you’re headed up high.
This weekend in downtown Baker City, prepare for a ghoulish invasion. Historic Baker City’s Downtown Trick-or-Treat invites costumed children and their adult counterparts to gather in the streets and ask for candy. Carry a flashlight, and no weapons, please.
In Roseburg, citizens welcome Halloween with the 42nd Annual Neewollah Parade. The parade sends costumed trick-or-treaters south down Jackson to Lane Street
collecting candies and trinkets from businesses along the way. All children must be accompanied by an adult to participate and though pets are also invited, they must be on a leash.
For wonderful visions of fall, gaze upon the town of Ashland from the heights of Acid Castle, a popular destination for rock climbers and outdoor enthusiasts alike. Perched on a ridge above Lithia Park, visitors are allowed spectacular views of the colorful surrounding valley. Wear sturdy shoes, and watch out for poison oak as you embark on this special journey.