Tuesday, June 06, 2006

N ~ Tomahawk Island

Date visited: June 6, 2006. Updated April 30, 2008
Agency: Mainly private property, please respect the rights of the property owners
Path Surface: Sidewalks and asphalt
Elevation gain/loss: none
Distance: 4.4 miles
Ratings: Setting ++ Calorie-burning ++
Directions: From I-5, take the Jantzen Beach exit. The path starts on the east side of the Jantzen Beach Red Lion.

Columbia River views, birds and wildflowers are the highlights of this walk in spring. You will also see enough boats, big and small, to make you wonder if any landlubbers live on the island.

From the east end of the Red Lion parking lot, set off on the sidewalk that parallels the river. Follow the path as it circles Hayden Bay, where boats bound to docks bob in the water. (Please remember that you are on private property and abide by the rules banning bikes, skating and skateboards.) Several varieties of swallows swoop by, blue herons stand stock still on the banks and Canada geese have staked out their claim in the lawn.

Follow this path to its end, walking south to Tomahawk Island Drive and turn east along the tree-lined, shady walk. Watch for large bumps in the asphalt along here, where the trees roots can easily trip you up. Pass the Sexton's Chandlery and turn west on a cul-de-sac that will serve the new Saltpare Bay condos. On the north side of the cul-de-sac is an asphalt path that leads out to a view of, yes, more boats.

Return as you came, but detour if you like into Lotus Island Park, south of Tomahawk Island Dr. for lunch or a snack, where you can sit awhile overlooking the Columbia Slough.

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