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2014 Tours

2014 Tours

Bald Eagles and More!

Saturday, February 1 (SOLD OUT!)

Join us in kicking off the 2014 tour season with a bang!  We will spend the day with Columbia Land Trust staff, Cherie Kearney, along with volunteer naturalist Steve Clark as they lead us on a tour of land trust lands.  Beginning the tour at Steigerwald National Wildlife Refuge, we will drive down the gorge to the Klickitat River to look for bald eagles who are making their winter trek back up to Canada and Alaska.  Last year we saw 48 eagles in just a few hours!  It is sure to be an exciting day of bald eagle sightings, great food, crisp weather, and fun memories.

Free to Be: The Hood River 

Saturday, April 12 ($10) (SOLD OUT!)

One year ago, Columbia Land Trust opened its Hood River office. To celebrate, Executive Director Glenn Lamb and staff will lead a tour of the “Powerdale Corridor”—one of our newest properties that stretches directly alongside the Hood River. Dammed since the 1920s (until a 2006 flood damaged the hydropower infrastructure, making way for decommissioning), the Hood River today is free-flowing. But there’s still a lot of work to be done. Columbia Land Trust’s role is to usher in a new era for this glacier-fed river. We’ll hike right atop the old wooden pipes that once carried water to the pump house and tell you how we’re working to make this wonderful river better for both people and wildlife. After our hike, we’ll head over to the Hood River office for a one-year anniversary celebration. Join us for a glass of wine and some yummy appetizers—and help us ring in a new year in the marvelous town of Hood River.

Bloomtime: Wildflowers on Mill Creek Ridge

Saturday, May 3 ($10) (SOLD OUT!)

Join us this May on one of our favorite and most photogenic adventures to the east side of the Cascades. In May, on the slopes of Mill Creek Ridge, native wildflowers cover the ground in a spectacle of color punctuated by the sight of distant peaks. (It may sound cliché, but this is a sight that really can take your breath away!) We’ll start the day by driving up the Columbia River Gorge and learning about the history and geology of the region from Executive Director Glenn Lamb. Once we arrive at Mill Creek Ridge, located just outside of the Dalles, we’ll learn the history of this conservation area and then spend the afternoon in pursuit of leisure: picnicking, hiking, relaxing in the sun, and photographing the landscape. A photography expert will be on hand to help you get your best shot of lupine and balsamroot in full bloom or Mount Adams in all of its snowy glory.

Columbia Wild: Our First-Ever Family Tour

Saturday, June 21 ($10)

Kids bring your parents! Parents bring your kids! Come and take part in our first ever family tour! We will start our day at the Water Resource Education Center in Vancouver, Wa., where exhibits and great guides will tell us about the Columbia River and the wildlife that can be found there.  Next, we’ll head up the Columbia River to Steigerwald Wildlife Refuge, where we can stretch our legs on a wonderful boardwalk winds through the wetlands. Beacon Rock, an amazing 900-foot basalt plug on the edge of the river, will be our last stop. A ranger here will tell us a bit of the great rock’s history before we finish with a hike to the top and incredible views of the river and Pierce Island, which Columbia Land Trust acquired last spring. This tour is a perfect way for parents and children to kick-off their summer on the right foot. 

Spruce Swamps, Osprey, Otters – Oh my!

Saturday, July 19 ($10)

Lace up your boots, grab your binoculars, and get inspired by the amazing work that is being done to restore  spruce swamps and wetlands in the lower Columbia River. Mysterious, haunting, complex—spruce swamps are essential to the health of the Columbia River estuary, and this tour gets you up-close-and-personal with this little-known habitat. We’ll explore some of the Land Trust’s most dynamic and important restoration projects between Longview and Naselle, Wa., including Kandoll Farm project where we excavated three miles of new channels to restore habitat along the Grays River. Stewardship staff will be on hand to talk about the real grit of restoration work as well as the wonders of this part of the Columbia River watershed, which is vital habitat for salmon, otter, migratory birds, and black bear. 

Fire and Forests on the Mountain: Pine Creek Tour

Saturday, August 2 ($10)

Thirty-three years after its eruption, Mount St. Helens has gone from ash and destruction to growth and renewal. Explore this marvelous transformation by spending the day with us on the slopes of this iconic volcano. Over the day, we’ll hear stories the geology of the area as well as stories of how Columbia Land Trust has been working to balance timberland with critical habitat protection. Once on the mountain, a ranger and other experts will be on-hand to talk about the volcano’s tumultuous past while we take in lahar flows, old-growth forests, and alpine meadows. The main part of the tour will be a three-hour hike through our Pine Creek property, one of our newest and largest conserved properties and home to threatened bull trout. This is a strenuous hike, so be sure that you are fit enough to spend several hours hiking. This is a place few people get to see—and after this tour, you’ll never see Mount St. Helens in the same way again.

Marvel and Wonder: A Night Under the Stars

Saturday, August 16 ($10)

"If the stars should appear but one night every thousand years how man would marvel and stare."

-Ralph Waldo Emerson

Come marvel and stare at the stars with Columbia Land Trust on this new tour inspired by one of our most dedicated donors. We will start the afternoon by touring some of our properties located along the Columbia River Gorge, where we’ll learn about conservation, the geology and history of the area, and spend time walking and exploring the landscape. Afterward, we will have a picnic dinner in a special location (how does an island in the middle of the Columbia River sound?). As the daylight fades and stars appear, we’ll snuggle under blankets to gaze at the sky, while a guest astronomer guides us through the galaxy, telling us how people, the earth, and the stars are connected by history, by science, and by myth.

Beach, Bay, and Ocean Spray at Long Beach

Saturday, September 6 ($10)

Did you know that Willapa Bay is the second-largest estuary on the west coast after San Francisco Bay?  Or that a third of U.S. cranberries are grown in Washington, many of which come from farms on the Long Beach Peninsula? Or that half of the total volume of water inside Willapa Bay enters and exits the bay at every tide? You’ll learn even more amazing facts and experience this great landscape on this tour—one of our most popular.  We’ll spend the day exploring some of the 2,700 acres that Columbia Land Trust has conserved in the area, including beautiful beaches, old-growth forests, bay shoreline, and secret interior islands. Spend a summer day at the beach with Columbia Land Trust and leave with more than just sand between your toes.

 Tour Questions: 360-696-0131; hcarlton@columbialandtrust.org

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