Annual BLM hikes on Table Rocks
The hikes are three to five miles long on a moderate grade and last three to five hours. No drinking water is available. Restrooms are located at both trailheads. Dogs are not allowed on the trails. Attendance is limited. To reserve space on a hike, call 541-618-2200. For more information, see www.blm.gov/or/resources/recreation/tablerock/index.php or www.nature.org/oregon/preserves.
Saturday, April 16, 9 a.m., Upper Table Rock: Michael Altman, herbalist and certified nutritionist at SOU, identifies plant species and discusses their medicinal uses.
Sunday, April 17, 10 a.m., Lower Table Rock: Molly Morrison with The Nature Conservancy and the BLM's Bucky Dennerlein talk about ecological and conservation efforts on the Table Rocks.
Saturday, April 23, 8 a.m., Lower Table Rock: Harry Fuller, a Klamath Bird Observatory field-trip leader, gives an expert's view of birds and their habitat. Bring binoculars. Participation is limited to 15.
Saturday, April 30, 10 a.m., Upper Table Rock: Nature photographer David Sherman will help shooters discover winning shots of flora and fauna.
Sunday, May 1, 10 a.m., Lower Table Rock: Robert Kentta, cultural resources director and elected official of the Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians, will discuss the history and culture of ancestral tribes.
Saturday, May 7, 10 a.m., Lower Table Rock: BLM wildlife biologist Jeff Stephens leads a trek looking for slithery, furry and feathered inhabitants. Joining him will be Mike Laurance, a BLM environmental interpreter.
Sunday, May 8, 10 a.m., Upper Table Rock: Heather Armstrong, a BLM environmental interpreter, will lead a family hike on Mother's Day.
Saturday, May 14, 10 a.m., Upper Table Rock: BLM botanist Marcia Wineteer looks for wild plants and wildflowers.
Sunday, May 15, 10 a.m., Lower Table Rock: SOU biology professor and entomologist Peter Schroeder searches out six- and eight-legged creatures. Participation is limited to 20.
Saturday, May 21, 8 p.m., Lower Table Rock: BLM wildlife biologist Tony Kerwin talks about bats — from their habitats to the threats they face. Bring a flashlight. Participation is limited to 20.
Sunday, May 22, 12:30 p.m., Upper Table Rock: Watercolorist and retired teacher Sylvia Miller leads a nature-sketching excursion. Bring a sketchbook, sketching pens and pencils, and a portable watercolor set. Participation is limited to 15.
Crater Lake snowshoe hikes
Through April: Rangers at Crater Lake National Park lead free snowshoe hikes at 1 p.m. every Saturday and Sunday. The hikes last two hours and cover about a mile of moderately strenuous terrain in forests and meadows on the crater's rim. Hikers must be at least 8 years old and be in reasonably good physical condition. No previous snowshoeing experience is necessary. Free snowshoes are available or hikers can bring their own. Advance reservations are recommended. For information or to sign up, call 541-594-3100.
Rogue Valley Walkers
Saturday, April 23: Ten-kilometer walk in the town of Rogue River starts at 9 a.m. Meet at Anna Classick Park on Pine Street. For more information, call 541-474-2291.
Southern Oregon Nordic Club
Wednesday ski tours: April 20, 27. Call Stefanie for details at 541-776-3987.
Saturday intermediate ski lessons: April 16, 23, 30. Call Michael for details at 541-482-2703.
KS Wild hike
Saturday, April 16: Moderate, four-mile hike to Rainie Falls on the Wild Rogue. Trail has a few fairly steep and narrow sections. Carpool leaves Evo's Coffee in Ashland at 10 a.m. and the Grave Creek boat ramp at 11:30 a.m. For details, call Lesley at 541-488-5789 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday, May 7: Easy hike along the Illinois River near Eight Dollar Mountain to enjoy the May flower bloom in this botanical paradise. Carpool leaves Evo's Coffee in Ashland at 9 a.m. sharp. Call George at 541-488-5789 to arrange a meeting in Selma if desired.
Native Plant Society outings
Saturday, April 16: Field trip to Rough and Ready Creek Botanical Wayside. Suzanne Vautier and Kathy Lombardo will lead an easy hike to admire the spring wildflowers and provide an update about an invasion of Allyssum murale and A. corsicum that are threatening this unique serpentine community. Group will meet at the wayside parking area on Highway 199 at 9:30 a.m. For details, contact Vautier at email@example.com or 541-592-3939.
Saturday, April 30: Sheri Hagwood will lead an easy, half-mile “Phlox walk” at China Hill in Yreka from 10 a.m. to noon to see the endangered Yreka phlox and other early spring treasures in bloom. For details, contact Hagwood at 530-841-3126, 530-842-2092 (evening) or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Saturday, May 7: George Van Vetchen will lead a hike on his personal trail to the top of Fielder Mountain, north of the town of Rogue River. This moderate-to-strenuous, eight-mile (roundtrip) trail passes through private and BLM land and gains 2,500 feet elevation to the summit. A narrow trail climbs steeply through moist forests and turns south on a ridge to the summit, with views of Rogue River, Grants Pass and Mount McLoughlin and an abundance of plant life. Wear sturdy shoes and bring lunch and water. Take Exit 48 at Rogue River. Turn toward town, go over the railroad tracks and turn left. At four-way intersection turn left and take a right onto West Evans Creek Road after crossing the bridge. Turn left at box number 2583. Mailbox is by itself on a log post with three red reflectors. The driveway is about 0.3 miles long. Contact Van Vetchen at email@example.com or 541-582-8980 for more info.
Southern Oregon Land Conservancy hikes
Thursday, April 21: Southern Oregon Land Conservancy is offering a series of free spring hikes. The first will be to Lower Table Rock. The moderate, 5.4-mile hike will be led by a BLM ecologist and focus on wildflowers, native trees and shrubs, and conservation of the Table Rocks. The group will meet at 10 a.m. at the Lower Table Rock trailhead, and the outing will last about four hours. Participants should bring water and lunch. Other hikes scheduled for this spring include Thursday, May 19, to Oredson-Todd Woods (10 a.m. to noon) and Sunday, June 12, on the Pacific Crest Trail (9 a.m. to 1 p.m.). For more information and to reserve a space, call the conservancy at 541-482-3069 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Spring guided mushroom hikes
Sunday, May 15 and Sunday, May 29: To learn more about local wild mushrooms, Northwest Nature Shop is sponsoring two hikes led by local mushroom expert John Teem. The emphasis will be on finding fungi and learning something about identification and the diversity of mushroom species. Edible and poisonous varieties will be discussed. Meet at the store, 154 Oak St., Ashland, at 10:30 a.m. to carpool. Cost is $20 per person per walk. For more information call 541-482-3241.
Tough As Nails
Saturday, May 7: 10-mile and 5K runs up Roxy Ann start at 8:30 a.m. at Prescott Park off Hillcrest Road. Preregistration costs $15 (with tech shirt) and $8 without a shirt by April 24. Race-day entry costs $10, and a limited number of shirts will be available for $10. For more information, contact race director Clayton Gillette at 541-535-7212 or email@example.com.
Group bike rides for normal humans
Saturdays, May 14-June 11: If you've ever wanted to learn the ins and outs of group riding, but felt intimidated about jumping into a pace line with a bunch of lycra-clad hard bodies, Phil Gagnon has just the ticket. Starting May 14, Gagnon and the Siskiyou Velo Club will be organizing beginner-friendly group rides on the Bear Creek Greenway. The first ride will be six miles, the second will be 11 miles and the rest will be 14 miles at an easy pace, with a cuppa along the way. The goal will be to learn the basics of group riding and group etiquette, with a focus on relaxed socializing. The first ride starts at Ashland Bicycle Works on Ashland Street in Ashland, where you can get your bike checked out for free. For starting times and other details, call Gagnon at 541-488-4289; Steve Juul at 541-535-1435; or Sandra Wetzel at 541-482-2995.
Recurring road rides
Every Saturday: A brisk, two- to four-hour ride begins at 10 a.m. at Cycle Sport in Medford. The course changes from week to week. Call ride leader Alex Hayes for details at 541-857-0819.
Every Saturday: Mellow 20-mile ride (10-12 mph) begins at 10 a.m. Location and route varies. Contact Phil Gagnon for details at 541-488-4289.
Every Sunday: A 20-mile training ride begins at 1 p.m. along the bike path behind Bad Ass Coffee Co. in Medford. Race pace. No ride leader.
Every Monday: Siskiyou Velo Club 25-mile coffee ride begins at 10:30 a.m. at Colver Park in Phoenix and journeys to Jacksonville. Gently rolling terrain, brisk pace. No ride leader.
Every Wednesday: A 25- to 40-mile Siskiyou Velo Club show-and-go ride begins at 11 a.m. at Rogue Valley Roasting Co. in Ashland. Moderate terrain, brisk pace. No ride leader.
Recurring mountain bike rides
Every Tuesday and Thursday, Ashland: Rides organized by the crew at Ashland Cycle Sport, 191 Oak St., Ashland. Meet at the Plaza in Ashland at 6:30 p.m. Riders of all abilities are welcome on the Tuesday ride, which usually lasts until dark. The Thursday ride is usually longer (2 to 2 1/2 hours) and faster paced. Lights are highly recommended. Helmets and a safe, functioning bike are required. Call Scott at 541-488-0581 for further information. Website is at www.roguecycle.com.
Every Wednesday, Jacksonville: Starting at 6 p.m., Cycle Analysis hosts a two-hour ride on either the Britt trails in Jacksonville or nearby John's Peak, which has almost 200 miles of trails. All comers are welcome — no age or ability limits. Helmets are mandatory and lights are required during the winter. Contact Jana Jenson at 541-899-9190, or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rogue Valley Audubon Society
Saturday, April 23: Birding trip to Whitehorse County Park in Grants Pass, led by Vince Zauskey, to look for resident birds, early migratory warblers and other species. Half-day trip. Meet at 8 a.m. for carpooling on the Taco Bell side of the north Fred Meyer parking area on Highway 62 in Medford. Bring a lunch and refreshments. For details, call Vince at 541-552-2317.
Friday-Saturday, May 13-14: Field trip to the Central Coast with Ron Ketchum. Group will base out of Lincoln City and bird in both directions. For hotel options and details, contact Ketchum at email@example.com or 541-944-3072.
Ashland Bike Swap
Saturday, April 16: The 21st annual event will be held from noon to 4 p.m. at The Grove, 1195 E. Main St., Ashland. Those interested in selling bikes or bike-related gear can drop off items Friday, April 15, starting at 5 p.m. and again on the day of the swap starting at 7 a.m. Sellers must agree to donate 15 percent of each sale, or a minimum of $5 per bike (whichever is more), to benefit bicycle-safety education programs in the Rogue Valley. For more information, call Ashland Parks and Recreation at 541-488-5340 or see www.rvtd.org/bikeswap.
Native plant talk: Soil crust lichens
Thursday, April 21: Botanist Jesse Miller will present an introduction to the inconspicuous but beautiful communities of soil-dwelling lichens that are abundant in drier parts of Oregon. In shrub-steppe and grassland habitats, these lichens help support resilient and diverse native plant communities by preventing exotic plant invasion, fixing nitrogen, slowing the evaporation of soil moisture and preventing erosion. Although this talk will focus on lichen communities east of the Cascades, Miller will mention historical and remnant soil crust lichen communities of Southwestern Oregon and briefly present results from two recent soil crust lichen research projects. The talk is at Southern Oregon University, Science Building, room 171. Refreshments at 7:15 p.m., meeting and program at 7:30. For details, call Kristi at 541-941-3744.
Free sailing classes
April 21, 28 and 30: The Rogue Yacht Club is offering free sailing classes that will include basic sailing theory, water safety, knot tying, intro to racing, intro to cruising and practice on the water in small boats. The first two classes are on Thursdays, April 21 and 28, from 6:30 to 9 p.m. at Pioneer Hall in Ashland, 73 Winburn Way. The third class is on Saturday, April 30, from noon to 3 p.m. at the Emigrant Lake boat launch area. For more information, call Jane Anderson at 541-899-8182.
Spring wildflower show
Sunday, May 1: The Siskiyou Chapter of the Native Plant Society will hold a small wildflower show from noon to 2 p.m. at Northwest Nature Shop, 154 Oak St., Ashland.
Spring wild mushroom show
Saturday, May 14: The free, annual fair will take place from noon to 3 p.m. at Northwest Nature Shop, 154 Oak St. Ashland. Many locally collected mushrooms will be identified and on display at the shop. Local experts will be available to answer questions and identify mushrooms brought in. Bring your own mushrooms and learn how to identify the poisonous ones. Cooked wild mushrooms will be available for tasting. This event is free and open to the public. For more information call 541-482-3241.