Friday, May 01, 2009

Places I Like to Run Barefoot - Portland

These following pictures are taken of a beach on the Portland side of the river, where the Columbia River joins with the Williamette River. This is an area I sometimes go in between my longer runs where I can just take it easy in the sand and water and give my feet some relaxing therapy.

To the left is the beginning of a trail from the parking lot through the woods to the beach. This is a nice surface of hard sand. This area is known to have a lot of stinging nettle, so I don't venture off the established trails! This is a favorite area for people to brings their dogs and let them run free on the beach. Often I bring some dog biscuits to hand out, just because I love dogs.

This is a grassy area used for group picnics and parties. Sometimes I run through here just for the fun of it. To the north of this area is the Columbia River. To the west is the Williamette River. The two rivers converge near this park.

This is looking north onto the Columbia River at the beach entrance.

This is the beach along the Columbia River. Laying on the log is a fisherman "hard at work." The river was at high tide this day, so the beach is really narrow. When the tide is out, I sometimes find these bad rusty wires and spikes in the sand. One time I got a nasty gouge in my foot from one of them. This area is not well maintained at all. I have spent a little time trying to pull the metal out and move it some inconspicuous place up in the trees where nobody will ever come across it. In the distance is a port where they sometimes load and load cars from large ships.

This is looking south on the Williamette River shore. Off in the distance is some industrial shipping port. Near that port is the 'beginning' of this little beach. It is about 1 1/2 miles from the beginning point to the end point on the Columbia beach side, so one up-and-back run is 3 miles. I sometimes double that to get in six miles on this beach.

Just up from the beach front are woods with some trails in them that lead up to the parking lot. As long as I stick to the trails I can avoid the stinging nettle that grows in the area. In the Spring there are edible mushrooms called Morrells growing in these woods, and I see quite a few people foraging for them.

This is looking towards the south end of the beach, on the Williamette River. There is usually a ship docked there getting filled with grain or something. Those look like grain elevators.

More trails in the woods leading to the parking lot.

More trails and logs to leap over. Some wimp put up some cross-boards. Too lazy to leap, I guess.

Trail in the woods.

Beach looking north next to the Williamette River.

My footprint in the wet sand.

Wide trail leading back to the parking lot.

More of the same trail.


Anonymous said...

This is beautiful! You guys have it easy in the Pacific Northwest.


Matt Metzgar said...

I just came across, it's very interesting. I have been experimenting with some barefoot runs on grass.

I don't know about running barefoot in the winter though. That sounds painful!

Vancouver Barefoot said...

Hi Matt! Thanks for commenting. Winter is more fun than you would think. The 'idea' is worse than the experience. Some of my most exhilarating runs have been in the brisk, nippy winter. Of course, winter here in this part of the country is far different than winter in Montana, Wyoming, the Dakotas, Michigan, New York, Maine, and other northern states!

Clynton Taylor said...

Looks like some fabulous running territory! Are you running barefoot in the winter cold now?

The Sentient Runner said...

Nooooo! Taking a few days off! Actually, I'm recovering from a sinus/chest cold and don't want to aggravate it by running at all, especially not out in the extreme cold. It was 8 degrees at our house this morning!