Crown Zellerbach Trail Hike West from Ruley TH

Hike Distance: 7.5 miles      Yearly Hike Distance: 74.3 miles

Elevation Gain: 484 feet      Yearly Elevation Gain: 8541 feet

We were heading out towards a hike up Sedum Ridge, which is located in Skamania County in WA.  Once we got to the Columbia River Gorge, the east wind gusts were brutal.  Our car was being jerked around and we weren’t having fun, and didn’t feel safe.  My wife was driving and we got to just past Rooster Rock before we decided that this wasn’t a good idea.  In addition, the snow was way lower than we expected and it would be a problem for the elevation we would be hiking at. 😦

Sooooo, we turned around and headed to the Crown Zellerbach Trail, which is located in the vicinity of Scappoose, OR.  The Crown Zellerbach (CZ) trail is about 22 miles long, and we decided to park at the Ruley trailhead.  To our amazement the Ruley TH was being improved in a big way!  The lot was now paved, and there was a restroom, covered picnic areas and plenty of benches.  In addition, there is also a bike repair center there!  They’re not quite finished with the upgrade but it looks fairly close?

We headed east on the trail and walked for 3.75 miles.  There were road crossings and some homes that were walked by, but there are plenty of forested areas with no civilization to be seen.  Unfortunately, there is the Scappoose-Vernonia Hwy that parallels the trail for its entire length, so expect some road noise.

We were delighted that there was no wind and plenty of sun.  We were overdressed but that wasn’t an issue.  I tried out a new pair of hiking boots, Oboz Bridger Mid B-dry shoes.  At first they hurt a bit, but broke in after about 30 minutes!  I’m trying them to see if they improve my back and ankle issues, that my Lowa Renegade boots may be aggravating.  So far I like them, but we’ll see what happens after a dozen hikes?

There were quite a bit of walkers and bikers on the trail, but almost everyone was courteous and friendly!  The trail was rather wet and muddy, so I recommend high-top waterproof boots.  My new boots had no issues.

Since we bailed out of the first hike, and took extra time to drive to this new hike, we finished our hike on the late side.  Not an issue, and well worth coming out here. 🙂

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