It’s a June weekend and the weather is finally getting nice so I want to escape the city. But so does everyone else – the hiking and nature spots within an hour of Portland are busy. Trailhead parking is full by 11:00am. I am an early riser so getting ahead of the crowd is not a concern. I just want something more quiet and peaceful.
I head instead to a little known wildlife refuge in SW Washington. Conboy Lake Wildlife Refuge is about an hour north of the Columbia River and is a wonderful oasis of animal and bird life. I arrived late in the day relatively – it was 10:00am but the early birds were long gone, but I still had a wonderful easy hike on the edge of the refuge.
There is an historic log cabin next to the parking lot which I explored. The interior walls are lined with newspapers from the early 1900’s. Was this for insulation or decoration?
The approximately 4 mile hike was easy, flat and I didn’t see another soul. Even though the bird life was scarce – there were plenty of wildflowers to photograph and enjoy. Next visit I will get an earlier start to the day and I hope to catch some of the 25-30 Sandhill Crane pairs that mate here every year. Now that would be something special to see.