ESCAPE INTO FUN
Stay and Play one more day.
You're invited to stay and play one more day
with us in beautiful Corvallis. You deserve it.
Go ahead and take a day off. Picnic at one of the top ten places to have a picnic with a view.
Relax. Explore. Enjoy. What could be more important?
Start driving, hiking, biking to the:
TOP TEN PLACES IN CORVALLIS FOR A PICNIC WITH A VIEW
1) Chip Ross Park
LUSH VALLEY VIEWS
Immerse yourself in 126 acres of lush forest and hilltop habitats of upland prairie and Oak Savannah. Enjoy an easy to moderate 1.5 mile trail or a 5 mile trail (Dan's Trail) through the park with beautiful views of Corvallis, the Willamette Valley, the Coast Range and the Cascade Mountains. Hikers and Bikers can also access the many scenic miles of trails in adjacent McDonald Forest from here. Bicycling is allowed on seasonally designated trails at Chip Ross Park. Picnic tables are located at the Lester Ave trailhead.
Chip Ross Park and Dan's Trail are located by traveling north on Lewisburg Road off of Hwy 99 north of Corvallis. Turn left on Highland Drive, travel past Crescent Valley High School, at the top of the hill turn right on Lester Avenue. Chip Ross Park is at the very end of this road.
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Latitude: 44° 61'418" N Longitude: -123° 28'559" W
2) Avery Park
TRAINS, ROSES, AND DINOSAUR BONES
Take a walk around Avery Park, one of Corvallis' most popular 75-acre parks; boasting natural areas, sports fields, and five picnic shelters. Be a kid again and climb on several playground structures scattered throughout the park. Have your picnic on a historic locomotive or an art sculpture that resembles dinosaur bones, both favorites for kids to explore and climb. A scenic, one-mile walking/jogging trail winds through the park, past the park's Community Garden and along the Mary's River riparian area. Sniff but don't pluck at the Rose Garden, a lovely backdrop for your vacation photographs and picnic. The park also includes a Rhododendron garden, a compost demonstration area, and an extensive horseshoe pit area that hosts an annual, regional horseshoe tournament. The Avery House Nature Center is found in Avery Park, as is the Applegate Trail interpretive kiosk.
Avery Park is located at 1310 SW Avery Park Drive off of Hwy 34, Philomath Boulevard.
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Latitude: 44° 55'41" N Longitude: -123° 27'19" W
3) Bald Hill
A BRIDGE TO A BARN
Bald Hill is a 284-acre natural area, offering both a moderately level, 1.5 mile multi-modal path along the base of the hill and several miles of dirt and gravel foot trails that circle and climb to the summit of the hill, connecting to the Mulkey Creek trail and Fitton Green Natural Area. These scenic trails pass through varied habitats of upland prairie, oak savannah, oak woodlands, riparian areas and wetlands. Wildflowers are plentiful in the spring. Stop and relax in the restored barn for shade and shelter at the base of the hill. Horseback riding and bicycling are permitted on seasonally designated trails. Enjoy your picnic lunch or dinner on the memorial benches along the way with views of beautiful vistas of nearby farms and the hills beyond. Bald Hill is also a great place for a run!!!
There are many ways to get to the top of Bald Hill. Start with the Oak Creek Road, and follow the horse trail up to the top. This is probably the easiest trail to get to the top. The parking lot for this trail is .84 miles West on Oak Creek road past the 53rd/Oak Creek stoplight.
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Latitude: 44° 56'775" N Longitude: -123° 33'255" W
4) Jackson Frazier Wetlands
TAKE A WALK ON THE WILD SIDE
This wetland was established as a Benton County Park in 1992 to protect the natural features and wildlife in the area, paving the way for education, research and public use. Open throughout the year, a 3400 foot long, accessible, wooden boardwalk (2/3 of a mile long) winds through the 144-acre gorgeous wetland. Enjoy the many plant communities and habitats. Interpretive signs explain different aspects of the park's natural history and watershed. Stop and have your picnic at one of the viewing points or benches along the way.
The Wetlands are located on the North end of Lancaster street off of Conifer Avenue.
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Latitude: 44° 60'74471289" N Longitude: -123° 23'9195988" W
5) Willamette Park
Willamette Park is Corvallis' largest park. All 287 acres offer significant natural areas, open meadows and playing fields. Enjoy spectacular Willamette River views and access and a fun Frisbee golf course that winds through the park. The Frisbee golf course is used year-round by Frisbee enthusiasts for practice, exhibitions and tournaments. The course features two basket positions for each hole, which keeps the course challenging for participants and allows the meadows to recover from frequent use. BRING YOUR FOUR-FOOTED FRIEND: Most of the park is designated as "off-leash" for dogs. Dogs are required to be on leash only in the picnic shelter, play ground and soccer field areas. Bring a group to the Willamette Picnic Shelter with great views of the river for parties and special events. There is play structure for young kids and 2 soccer fields that can be reserved for tournaments. Several hiking/jogging trails branch off of a multi-modal path that runs the length of the park. The path connects a nearby neighborhood at one end, and the Crystal Lake Sports Fields and Willamette Boat Launch at the other end. Several of the trails lead down to the river for easy river-side fishing.
East of Corvallis off of Hwy 99 heading South, at the end of SE Goodnight Avenue after a left.
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Latitude: 44° 53'7266" N Longitude: -123° 25'0760" W
6) Corvallis Riverfront Commemorative Park
THREE KIDS IN A FOUNTAIN
Walk along the Corvallis downtown riverfront or run through the cascading fountain in this beautiful urban award-winning park bordering the commercial district of downtown Corvallis. Designed as a "downtown showcase", the park features both paved and grassy areas, views of the Willamette River, a variety of resting benches and tables for picnics, over 350 ornamental trees and over 5,000 decorative shrubs. A 12 foot wide, 3/4 mile long multi-modal path runs along the park, connecting three distinct plazas. These plazas are available for rent year round. The path also connects the riverfront to the Eric Scott McKinley Skate Park and then on to Pioneer Park. The park is filled with decorative sculptures by five different artists and a water fountain at the Jackson Plaza. Picnic on Saturday mornings at the Corvallis Farmers Market featuring fresh local flowers, produce, baked goods, gifts, food, and more.
Downtown Corvallis starting at 1st and Jackson Street.
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Latitude: 44° 56'42" N Longitude: -123° 25'93" W
7) Central Park
THE HEART OF CORVALLIS
Central Park features beautifully fragrant, tended flowerbeds, paved walkways and a large playground. There are sculptures and resting benches scattered throughout the park, giving the park several focal points, and many great spots to throw down a blanket and have a picnic Hold hands as you walk through the Central Park Gazebo , a popular venue for weddings and for the Corvallis Community Band. Central Park hosts many annual Corvallis events such as the Fall Festival, Festival of Lights and daVinci Days.
The park is bordered north and south by Monroe and Madison Avenues, and bordered east and west by 6th and 8th Streets in downtown Corvallis near the Corvallis Public Library.
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Latitude: 44° 34'34" N Longitude: -123° 16'00" W
8) Mary's Peak Recreation Area
ON A CLEAR DAY YOU CAN SEE FOREVER!
Mary's Peak Recreation Area features natural scenic delights and varied activities including picnicking, sightseeing, cross-country skiiing, hiking, birding, and research. Mary's Peak is the highest mountain in the Coast Range yielding scientific wonders, grand views and vast opportunities for its exploring its trails, waterfalls and forests within a wildly shifting environment.
Take Philomath Blvd West and take a left at the Y (Hwy 34) at the west end of Philomath. Expect a winding, twisting nine-mile route that leads to the summit on the Alsea Hwy. Along the way are entrances to three of the four trails that crisscross the park and gentle waterfalls. At around the nine-mile mark you'll find the parking lot, which leads to a gravel trail that ascends to the top. There, if the day is clear enough, you can actually see the beaches of Newport and the ocean some 21 miles away. You can see as far as Mount Rainier to the north and Mount Thielsen, near Crater Lake, to the south.
East Ridge, Meadow Ridge, North Ridge and Tie trails all offer different treks through a variety of stunning environments. The peak is a haven for stargazers and night picnics. Just below the south side of the summit are two enormous rock structures that jut out. These are perfect for picknicking out of the wind for awhile and taking in the surroundings.
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Latitude: 44° 50'444" N Longitude: -123° 55'262" W
9) William Finley Wildlife Refuge
WHERE THE WILD THINGS ARE
Step back into nature and discovery on this 5,235-acre preserve. The refuge features over 200 species of wildlife and numerous observation sites. The site protects many of the valley's historic habitats, including the largest remaining tract of native Willamette Valley wet prairie. Fields of wildlife food crops are interspersed with Oregon white oak savannah, meandering creeks with bottomland Oregon ash forest, old growth big-leaf maple, and native prairie. Endangered and threatened species such as geese, peregrine falcons, bald eagles, Oregon chub, and Bradshaw's desert parsley find protection and sanctuary on the refuge. A herd of Roosevelt elk can be found in the bottomland forests or farm fields on the refuge. Of historic interest is the Fiechter House, completed in 1857, and thought to be the oldest house in Benton County. The refuge was named for William L. Finley, an early conservationist who persuaded President Theodore Roosevelt to set aside the first national wildlife refuge west of the Mississippi River. TIP: Go early in the morning when the natives are restless and bring your binoculars.
Drive south from Corvallis on Highway 99W about 10 miles to entrance sign on west side of road. Turn west and follow signs.
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Latitude: 44° 41'833" N Longitude: -123° 32'444" W
10) Alsea Park
SPARKLING FALLS AND FORESTS
Alsea Falls Recreation Area is next to the South Fork Alsea River, in a lush coastal forest of red cedars, maples, and Douglas firs. The recreation area has 22 picnic tables, 16 campsites, hiking trails, and an outstanding view of Alsea Falls. Throughout the spring and summer, visitors find blooming rhododendrons,Oregon Grape, dogwoods, and other wildflowers, as well as numerous wild berries. Trails lead to Alsea Falls and other scenic points along the river. Beavers build in the river, and deer and elk graze in the young areas of the forest. Picknicking sites everywhere! You can fish in the river, too.
Take OR 99W south 15 miles. Turn west on County Road #45120 and go 5 miles to Alpine Junction, then take South Fork Alsea Access Road 9 miles to Alsea Falls Campground.
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Latitude: 44° 32'639" N Longitude: -123° 49'194" W