Ridgefield Wildlife Refuge Hike at Kiwa Trail

2020 Hike #; 173

Hike Distance: 1.5 miles

Elevation Gain: 64 feet

Yearly Hike Distance: 1313.5 miles

Yearly Elevation Gain: 194700 feet

The fires along the west coast are destroying all of our beautiful forests, farmlands and many developed areas. Climate change is turning this gorgeous area into a wasteland, and it’s incredibly depressing to witness, and we’ve watched the weather change over the past decades. Because of the intense smoke moving throughout Oregon and Washington, almost everything having to do with being outdoors is closed. The air smells horrible and is dangerous to breathe.

We decided to go to the Ridgefield Wildlife Refuge and drive around the scenic loop. Very few cars were on the road, which was quite nice. There’s a small 1.5 mile hiking trail, along this driving route, and we decided to stop and give it a try, as there was only two cars in the lot. This trail is normally crowded, but the smoky air has deterred most people from coming here.

Steps to reduce Covid19 transmission, while on the Kiwa Trail, have been taken. This loop trail can typically be walked from both directions, but it has now been made into a one way trail! We wore our face masks, and only saw one older gentleman along the way, and unfortunately he wasn’t wearing a mask. Also note that the bathrooms were closed, so be prepared.

This is the first real hiking trail we’ve been on since the Pandemic started, and it was pure joy! Despite the smoke the scenery was amazing. 🙂 We saw deer, Egrets, ducks and turtles! The swampy channels were particularly beautiful.

One interesting thing to note is that the fields, covered in dry grasses, were being tilled. We were glad to see them doing this since it would prevent the area from being burned, in the event of a fire situation.

This was one fantastic hike, despite the short distance. The future wasn’t looking good in the near term, for hiking, as you’ll see from our next hike. 😦