The Confluence Project was part of creating artwork for the 200th anniversary of the Corps of Discovery (Lewis and Clark Expedition). It is located on the Sandy River Delta park property, and at the end of an approximately 1.2 mile (2 km) trail that winds northward from a gravel parking area near Interstate 84.
The bird blind is not just a blind useful in watching wildlife without scaring it away. It is also educational in nature, as most of the slats in the bird blind feature the names of various birds and other wildlife that were in the area during the time of the Corps of Discovery, and their current status. Many of these species are threatened, and several have gone extinct.
The names feature Lewis & Clarks's names for the birds, the date they first encoutered it, the current common name for the birds or animals, the scientific classification for the bird, and if they are threatened, extinct, a species of concern, or if blank then no problems with their status are known.
Witness, for example, the May 10, 1805 sighting of the "Moos Deer", which we now call Shiras Moose, Alces alces shirasi.
This is a little complicated. East of Troutdale there is a small state park called Lewis & Clark State Park. From here go North on the Columbia River Highway (narrow paved road past the park) and act like you are getting on Interstate 84 going west. Just before you make the 180 degree turn from going east to going west and enters the Interstate, you will see that you can also continue straight into a gravel parking lot. That is the place where you need to park your car. You will then need to find a map of the trail system of the park area. On the east side of the parking area is a fairly wide trail that will lead you to the Bird Blind.
This little neighborhood park has tenis courts, a paved walking trail, a number of picnic tables, a playground, and a number of other features that are appropriate to a neighborhood park.
This might be a good place to stop if you want a quiet neighborhood area to walk around if you need a chance to get out of your car. Otherwise, the park has little of interest to the tourist. The park is almost completely surrounded by houses, making it quiet, and also reasonably safe for young kids because there aren't many directions to go running and wind up into a street.
The park official location is 1700 SE Lewellyn Avenue, Troutdale, OR 97060.
The photo looks a bit bleak because it was taken in very early 2005 - in the middle of winter. With leaves on the trees and flowers in bloom, the park is a very nice place. See the city of Troutdale's web site for better information and a photo in summer.
Head east on SW Hensley Road from SW 257th Avenue and you will quickly come to a sharp bend in the road. This sharp bend in the road, where Hensley turns into SW 262nd, is the easiest point of entrance to find for Sunrise Park.
While the park is mostly of local interest, on clear days it also offers a beautiful example of what the Portland area once looked like not so long ago, and as the name implies it is particularly spectacular at sunrise.
From here, you can see Mount Hood towering over the forests to the east, showing what the entire Portland area used to look like.
When I last visited this park, it featured a few scattered small trees, and a bark dust jogging trail around the edges.
Troutdale's preserved train station sits at the east end of downtown, with a caboose on display. There are several benches along a trail that runs for a very short distance along the Sandy River. The trail leads right up to the edge of the railroad right of way at the bridge over the Sandy River.
From the parking lot, this trail is visible between the caboose and the old train station (see photo, taken in March 2003).
Originally built by the son of Troutdale's founder in 1900, the original farm has now become surrounded by suburban developments. To preserve this locally historic farm house and property (though most of the farm land has been turned into housing) the city of Troutdale purchased the house in 1979 and sold the house to the Troutdale Historical Society for use as a museum.
The grounds around the house remain as a public park.
This is also the trailhead for the Strawberry Meadows Trail.
The grounds consist of ponds and a few benches, and would be a pleasant place to rest on your way to the Columbia River Gorge.
The photo was taken from the top of the hill, from the trail that leads up to the top from the house itself.
Hidden behind relatively new housing developments in the city of Troutdale, there is a fairly new city park. Made up entirely of preserved suburban wilderness along the banks of Beaver Creek Canyon, during certain times of the year this park is alive with a number of bird calls. A short set of reasonably well maintained trails leads a loop around the canyon.
It is best to NOT go off the trail, as there is poison oak in the canyon (see photo #2).
Well built bridges lead across the canyon (see photo #1 and #3).
Entrances to the park are not easy to see. The primary entrance used to be through Kiku Park, but vandalism in 2005 eliminated the staircaset that connected the two. The three remaining entrances to the trail system are located on neighborhood streets between houses. These are not marked with any obvious signs, and appear to be sidewalks that simply lead behind people's houses. One such entrance is across Beaver Creek Lane from the entrance to Weedin Park. Another entrance is located at Chapman Avenue & Beaver Creek Lane. The third entrance is on Evans avenue on the other side of Beaver Creek.
The web site listed below is for the city of Troutdale web site. For the parks section, look under "Community" and pull down the menu to the "Parks" section (this is how the menu system is arranged as I write this on June 18, 2007, but that has changed over the years).