Although January does not seem like the best time of the year to explore a park, consider making the drive out to Feyrer Park near Molalla. It is located right on the Molalla River, which happens to be running high at the moment with all the recent rain. You can beat the rush to see this park now while it’s still winter and decide of this will be one of your new favorite spots.
It is a small park run by Clackamas County with just 20 campsites. Fees are somewhat low at $26.00 per night for a site with water and electric hookups or for tent camping. The sites allow up to 8 people with 2 cars and up to two pets per site.
The air is very fresh, with incredibly tall trees and there’s a good play structure. Geese could fly over during winter too. Horseshoes are also available for rent. There are covered structures that are reservable for picnicking. One is very small and has a very pretty fireplace you could use on a picnic or campout. The park is open during the day right now and the gate across the camping access says it will open again on May 1st. You can make an online reservation or call the Parks Administrative office at 503-742-4414.
The Molalla River is popular for fishing although it’s running pretty fast right now. The park is located near the Molalla River Trails. If you click on the link and scroll down to page two, it will show you 3 maps of the trail network located slightly South of Molalla on Dickey Prairie Road. There are several campsites located along South Molalla Road on the maps. Use the zoom feature to see them better.
Interestingly, the trail system brochure is put out by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) that has been in the news a lot lately because of the occupation of the Malheur Wildlife Refuge near Burns, Oregon. It has been surprising to see a wildlife sanctuary become a center of controversy. Just about the last place on earth anyone would’ve thunk it. In any case, if you would like to learn more about the BLM and some of the maps they offer, please click on the following link: BLM Maps. They include recreation, winter guides, river guides and more.
This area also happens to be a gold panning location as shown on Oregon Gold.net. They say that it is a good place to learn how to pan for gold because it’s so close to Portland. Also, the actual finding of gold is sparse enough that you could get lots of practice!
Whether you’re on the Molalla, the Clackamas, the Willamette or in the Columbia Gorge, there is always plenty to see and do in Oregon.
Directions to Feyrer Park: Take I-205 to Park Place, exit 10 in Oregon City. Go 14 miles on Hwy 213 to Hwy 211. Turn left. Go 2.8 miles to a four way stop. Go .6 miles further and veer right on Mathias Rd. Then take a slight left on to Feyrer Park Road. The park is right after Shady Dell.