Wednesday, March 19, 2008

NW to NE ~ Burnt Bridge Creek Trail-Current Full Length

Date visited: October 29, 2007
Agency: City of Vancouver
Path Surface: Paved
Elevation gain/loss: Definitely some up and down but elevation gain from end to end is minimal
Distance: 7.6 miles one way
Ratings: Setting +++ Calorie-burning ++++
Directions: I-5 to 78th St. in Vancouver. Turn west 1.3 miles to Fruit Valley Rd. (Sign says Lakeshore Rd.) Turn left .4 mile, turn left onto Bernie Dr and immediately turn left into small gravel parking lot.

The completion of more sections to this path create a nice streamside venture out Burnt Bridge Creek, a long walk without a shuttle or a very pleasant bike ride. Expect some hills.

Begin at Stewarts Glen, the most woodsy and perhaps nicest section of the trail. A serene ponded area is a waterfowl haven. Enjoy the gentle roll of the path, a warm-up for some bigger hills ahead. Alder and oak stand by.

At .5 mile, cedars and doug fir crowd in. At .7 mile, the path emerges from the trees and meanders through the reed canary grass to meet up with the creek. Look for an old pear orchard. After crossing two more streets, the path appears to end, but turn right on Hazel Dell Ave, look for the continuation on the east side of the road at about .2 mile farther.

Cross the freeway on the overpass and follow the signs for the Discovery Trail. When you reach Leverich Park Way, turn uphill to the right and look for the “Greenway Access” sign on the left. Breeze through grassy Leverich Park by ignoring all turns until the path curves over the creek, then take the 1st left. Go uphill to cross over the road to 41st Circle where you turn right, go to the end of the road and find the path again. At St Johns Rd-about halfway at 3.6 miles-turn right up hill to cross at the crosswalk.

The path then hurtles down to the creek which means another climb back up to pass through a large meadow under the powerlines. Continue on the path, reaching the Devine Trailhead. Our favorite detours from the main path begin .5 mile from this trailhead, just after the asphalt turns to pavers and concrete. Turn left to take the west pond loop, where for a delightful glimpse of winter waterfowl.

As you loop around, you will return to the main path and a crosswalk to continue on. The first left intersection is the east pond loop, with a nice viewing area. Again, the loop returns to the main path, where a left turn brings you along under a bluff to the current end of the path in a nice park at Burton Rd. Map.

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