Three hikes that altered my brain chemistry

Hiking is an activity that I believe to be a true gift. For many, it is a Saturday activity, but others practically live on those paths. For me, I like to think it’s a bit of both, as nature has become such a big part of my life.
With global warming on a rise, the preserved part of nature has become almost sacred to me. When I am faced with the question, “What’s your favorite hiking trail?” I truly don’t know what to say. I wish I could dump out all my experiences and the memories attached to them, but sadly, I cannot. So here’s some scrambled thoughts constructed into coherent sentences.

Photo courtesy of Watson Morgan

Mt. Tabor

Once an active volcano but is now extinct and couldn’t be in a more perfect spot to just hang out. It reaches as high as 636 feet, and the trail is 1.9 miles long.
This is a perfect walk for beginners, given the whole hike would take, on average, about 45 minutes.
This park has become a bit of a spot for me and my friends, a few of them have had their birthday here. You are able to schedule that by going to, but in most cases, it is first come, first serve.
Every time we’ve been there it was a good experience. The atmosphere is always lively, and in summer, it’s a little crowded, but I don’t really mind. Because it doesn’t take away from the beauty.

Sauvie Island

This area is well-known for its river and farm, but the trails and wildlife there are just as beautiful as the river. There are three trails: Warrior Rock Lighthouse trail, which has a length of 6 miles, Oak Island Nature trail, which has a length of 2.7 miles, and last but notably the best is Reeder Road Loop at 29 miles long.
I have been going to Sauvie Island ever since I was a baby, and it is one of my favorite places. The nostalgia is really the best part of the experience, but even my friends who haven’t been going since they were young still enjoy the river.
It is a beautiful area with cotton trees stretching high. They act almost like a backdrop for the river and sand.
The farm is also worth visiting because of the fresh produce and honey sticks with the best flavors like my favorite blue raspberry.

Reeder Road Loop

This hike will take an average of 10 hours to complete if you walk. This hike is perfect for birdwatchers and mountain biking. Keep your eye out for birds such as eagles, ospreys and hawks.
Though the trail is shared with motor vehicles, it’s so beautiful that at least for me, it’s easy to look past this. Dogs are allowed on this trail, though leashes are required in some places. I like to think this is my dog Roxy’s favorite. She wags her tail at the name Sauvie Island.
This is a perfect trail for mountain bikers and is in all a beautiful area.

Whistle Punk Loop

This hike is like a TV show I never finished but still tell everyone that it’s my favorite show. The trail is easy and only 1.6 miles, the hike is a loop and very family friendly. Some, like , call the trail an outdoor museum because of the many forest biomes and rusting artifacts.
The forest is striking, it took my breath away. If you were to picture the forest where fairies live this is what would pop up. It looks like a fairy tale and is the one I recommend the strongest out of all these hikes. Even though I was around seven when I took this hike, the imagery of the forest sticks in my head like bubble gum on my shoes.

Hiking is a treat, but sadly not everyone will experience its full beauty. I think being able to experience hikes when I was younger shaped me into the person I am in a little way. You are taught to respect your boundaries and preserve nature in all its beauty. I hope that this inspires you to go out with your friends, family or just yourself so you can make memories to contrast the busy city life.