Portland   Explore!  Portland

Walking(running too) Routes

Portland is one of the best walking and running cities in the country, especially for the walker or runner who learns how to enjoy the rain. 

  • Beautiful hills--which are great exercise once we get used to their uphill aspect. 
  • Magnificent trees and forests--good to duck under when it rains especially hard. 
  • Fine trails--many of which are great for bicycling, too. 
  • A population that has a lot of avid walkers, runners and bicyclists--we needn't be alone on the trails if we don't want to be.  
  • We can find solitude, too.  But those places we will have to find for ourselves, because if they are widely publicized...  Well...?)

Here are some suggestions for places to walk or run.
concentrating on the West Side, for now.
The trails
of the
SW Urban Trails Plan

The SW Walking Map (Portland Office of Transportation and SWTrails) shows the routes and give a lot of useful information for pedestrians and bicyclists.  Note that a new, 2005, version of this map has just been completed. (Aug 05)

See also the maps of SW Portland (and Forest Park) on this Website.  These maps concentrate on accuracy and completeness.

Interesting routes to consider:

Albert Kelly Park Loop
Marquam Gulch
       Sunnyside - Goldy Corridor
       Marquam Hill trails
       Marquam Gulch - Trail #6
J Walks (five routes about the Mittleman Jewish Community Center, 6651 SW Capitol Highway (Vermont St) at SW 25th Ave. 

Columbia Gorge Trails  (Those which go to the top on the Oregon side.)

Several locations of popular walks.

The following maps show starting points for many walks that many people have enjoyed.

A few of them lead to route descriptions like those above.  More of these descriptions will be added.

Lake Oswego area
SW Portland
Northwest (including Forest Park)  -- awaiting an appropriate index map

Walking on the Wild Side
from Jim Thayer
former Pres. Friends of Forest Park

Many routes in Forest Park and Marquam Gulch area.  Much more...flora, fauna, colorful history, interesting facts, etc.

A few links to other Web sites with a similar purpose:

about.com (General information web site...has walks in Portland)
Lewis and Clark Memorial Discovery Bluff Trail (Inchoate web site)


Council Crest
for spectacular views of Portland

walk (or run) up to this beautiful gem of the Portland Parks system.

What mountains can you see from Council Crest?

Look and see!
(142 kBytes)

And take a look at the
Natural Resources 
of Portland Parks

When is it dark; when is it light?
"Back" to return

When is it cold; when is it hot?
"Back" to return

Springville Meadows Park

Assisted walking...for those who need something to steady themselves as they walk.

(related items from a previous version of this page)

Let's put our favorite walking and running routes on our Web sites and link them to each other.  Join us in collecting and posting interesting routes.

Let's assemble street maps of the Portland area that are accurate and complete: if it's on the map, it's on the ground; if it's on the ground, it's on the map; if it's not on the ground, . . . etc.    Help us correct the maps.


Are you a Forest Park runner or hiker?
or would like to be
Friends of Forest Park has made a
new kind of map with you in mind.

Mazamas leads casual hikes exploring the streets and trails of Northwest Portland every Tuesday and Thursday at 6:00 pm . This is a great way to meet other hikers, plan a weekend trip, or just to maintain your fitness after work and see some hidden parts of Portland! Meet at Mazamas at 909 NW 19th Ave. prior to 6PM.   Donation cost is one dollar.  Info: 503-227-2345 or visit our web site at www.mazamas.org (click above).

Portland based
...to promote walkable communities.  To promote walking.
"...walking is a practical transportation choice with powerful benefits for both individuals and their communities." WEB SITE
Take a walk

Under the Sky

a website of many Portland walks

Community Centers
Let's present maps and route descriptions for downloading off the Web and printing on home computers--as we describe above.  Let's put these on various Web sites and link them together.
Block Watch
...is a Portland Office of Neighborhood Involvement program (in partnership with the Portland Police Bureau) to organize cooperation of citizens with the city's emergency response system for quick and accurate reporting of crime and other emergencies.  Let's make maps for the individual block watches and maps to aid coordination of neighborhood watches.
Neighborhood Emergency Team
...is a Portland Fire Bureau program to train citizens in emergency response, especially response to emergencies that will overwhelm the city's response system...major earthquake is the major concern.  Let's make maps showing the locations of your members.  Encourage walks to familiarize your members with each other, with the terrain and it's tricky pedestrian connections, and with the neighbors.
Senior Health And Physical Exercise
...is a research project (Oregon Research Institute) investigating the effectiveness of walk programs for senior citizens.  Walk leaders: contact us for accurate maps; help us further correct the maps.

Reach out
We can use these pages to help collect interesting walking and running routes.  If you have posted routes on your Web pages and would like us to link to those pages, let us know.  If you would like to put your routes on these pages let us know. 
Suggestions? email
To foster physical health, 
theWellness program 
at OHSU suggests:
  • Be active together 
  • Plan unusual outings
  • Don't let bad weather stop you
  • Invest in basic facility, equipment or gear
  • Provide education and rational

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A trillium along the trail        ...between the Zoo and SW Patton Rd