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Get Out: May 14, 2009

Table Rock hikes

BLM and The Nature Conservancy are conducting their annual spring guided weekend hikes atop the Table Rocks. There is no fee, but reservations are required. Participation is limited to 30 individuals per hike, unless otherwise noted. To reserve space, call 618-2200. Bring lunch and something to drink. Restrooms available at both trailheads. No dogs allowed. The hikes last three to five hours and cover three to five miles along a moderate-grade trail.

Saturday: 10 a.m., Upper Table Rock, check out the insects with Peter Schroeder, associate professor of biology and entomologist at Southern Oregon University.

Sunday: 10 a.m., Upper Table Rock, ethnobotanist Donn Todt explores the science of our relationship with plants.

Sierra Club hikes

Saturday: Moderate to difficult, eight-mile, cross-country hike to Parsnip Lakes. Hike leader is Cathy Edwards; call 210-0204.

Saturday: Curry Section Sierra Club hike along the Sourdough Trail on Packsaddle Mountain. This trailhead is located up the Winchuck River about one hour or 26 miles from Brookings. Trail is seven miles long with a 2,237-foot elevation gain and goes all the way to the North Branch of the Smith River. This is a serpentine area with a number of unique flowers. Sturdy hiking boots, a whistle, a sack lunch and water are essential. Hikers will gather at the Event Center/Fairgrounds in Gold Beach at 7:15 a.m. or 8 a.m. at Coastal Cardiology on Alder in Brookings to carpool. Contact Al Collinet at dewbobal@verizon.net for details.

May 30: Strenuous, 13-mile hike, Tanner Lakes to Sucker Creek. Hike leader is George Lescher; call 482-4477.

June 6: Easy to moderate, four-mile hike to Rount Mountain. Hike leader is Cathy Edwards; call 210-0204.

June 13: Very strenuous, 15.5-mile hike, Muir Creek to Buck Canyon to Alkali Meadows. Leader is George Lescher; call 482-4477.

June 20: Wildflower hike around Grouse Gap, seven miles, moderate. Leaders are Carol Walker, 488-8517, and Carol Ingelson, 245-6380.

July 24-27: Backpacking trip in the Sky High Valley in the Marble Mountains. For trip details, visit www.oregon.sierraclub.org/groups/rogue/outings.asp

June 26-28: Backpacking trip on the Frog Pond Loop in the Red Buttes Wilderness. For trip details, visit www.oregon.sierraclub.org/groups/rogue/outings.asp

June 27: Family and friendly-dog hike. Union Creek, 4.4 miles, easy. For ages 7 and up. Bring your children and friendly dogs. Call Darin Banner at 531-7623.

Wild Rogue River Canyon hike

Saturday: Join a naturalist from the Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center for a free, guided hike into the Zane Grey roadless area. The group will stop for lunch at an historic cabin on Whiskey Creek. Meet at 10 a.m. at Evo's Cafe across from the public library in Ashland, or at 10:45 at Gooseberries Natural Foods in Grants Pass and carpool from there to the trailhead. The hike will go on in a light rain, but will cancel for severe weather. RSVP to laurel@kswild.org or call the KS Wild office at 488-5789. Bring food, water, warm clothes, rain gear if needed and binoculars if you have them.

Native Plant Society outings

Saturday: Ecology field trip to Longwood Burn in the Takilma area, which occurred the same year as the Silver fire (1987). This area has been treated, rehabilitated and used for experimentation. Forest ecologist Tom Atzet has sequential pictures and data of the ecosystem's response to the fire and treatment. This will be a great opportunity for discussion of fire ecology and keeping native plants healthy. Bring a sack lunch and water. Meet at the Taco Bell next to the Grants Pass Wal-Mart at 9 a.m. Contact Tom Atzet at 955-9529 or jatzet@budget.net.

Sunday: Frank Callahan will lead a "Three Tree Field Trip" to see a Hinds Walnut site on Bear Creek, followed by trip to the Tolo Tavern to see the Famous "Tolo Tree," a Gray Pine about a half-mile north of Tolo on Gold Ray Road. Then a quick jog to Ft. Lane historical site to see the Gallery Tree and then to Foley Lane for a short but rigorous hike to see both Gray Pine and California Buckeye. Meet at Albertson's in Central Point at 10 a.m. Bring a lunch and prepare to carpool. Everyone welcome, but pre-registration is required. Contact Callahan at 541-855-1164 or callahanseeds@gmail.com.

Deer Leap Half Marathon

Saturday: The actual distance of this scenic trail course along the Deer Leap segment of the North Umpqua River Trail above Glide is 15.1 miles. The course starts above Toketee Falls and finishes at Illahee Flats. Runners will cross two classic wood-span bridges and numerous other tributaries. This is a point-to-point race, so a free shuttle will transport runners from the finish area at Illahee Flats to the start area at Toketee Lake. Start time is 9:30 a.m. Online registration closed May 13. No race-day registration. For details go to www.roguemultisport.com.

Memorial Day Ashland Run

May 23: The 34th annual run starts at 8:30 a.m. at Hagardine and Fork streets and covers 4.8 hilly miles along Ashland's trails, alleys and backroads. Registration costs $1.25 Race-day sign-up begins at 8:15. Trophies to top male and female finishers and drawings for prizes. Call 482-4919 or 488-0504 for details.

Pompadour Half Marathon

May 30: The race begins at 9 a.m. at Ashland's North Mountain Park. Participants can register in person at Rogue Valley Runners by May 29 or mail entries to RVR by May 24. Packet pick-up will be held at RVR, 161 E. Main St., on Friday May 29 from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Race day check-in is 7:45-8:45 a.m. at North Mountain Park. Cost is $30 before May 29. Race-day entry fee is $35. For details call 201-0014, or go to roguevalleyrunners.com.

Gold Dust Days

June 6: The 7th annual race features a new half-marathon event this year. All races start at 8 a.m., including a 5K out-and-back, a 10K loop and a half-marathon loop. The start is at Gold Hill city center by the library. Cost is $15 for the 5K and 10K by May 29, $18 day of race. The half marathon is $20 pre-registered, $23 on race day. Packet pick-up is race day at the starting area from 6:45-7:45 a.m. If you want to volunteer, call JJ Moses at 541-855-7263. For registration form and details, go to www.sorunners.org.

Granite Man Endurance Weekend

June 6-7: The Granite Man Triathlon has turned into a whole new animal this year, growing to two days of challenging events. Saturday will host a tough 11-mile mountain run and, new this year, a 30K trail run and 60K ultra run. Sunday will be the off-road triathlon, duathlon and 30K mountain bike races. For times, entry fees, registration deadlines and other details, go to the Granite Man Web site at www.roguemultisport.com.

Lake of the Woods Races 2009

June 6: Sky Lakes Medical Center is sponsoring two adult races at Lake of the Woods, a 15K (9.3 miles) and a 2-mile run/walk, plus a half-mile Children's Dash. Races begin at 9:30 a.m. The events start and end at the Lake of the Woods Resort just off Highway 140. Runners in the 15K will make a circuit around the lake on paved highways. The 2-mile event is an out-and-back course on paved roads. The entry fee is $15, or $22 with a T-shirt. Entry deadline is May 27. Add $2 for race-day registration. Race forms are available at www.skylakes.org. For details call 541-882-6311, ext. 4768 or e-mail spalcovich@skylakes.org.

Siskiyou Outback Trail Runs, 50K and 15K

July 11: Registration is open for the 11th annual Siskiyou Outback trail runs. The two races start at the Mt. Ashland Lodge and follow the Pacific Crest Trail west. Proceeds go to the Pacific Crest Trail Association. Visit www.siskiyououtback.com for information and registration. Register early as both events are expected to fill again in 2009.

Crater Lake Rim Runs

Aug 8: Registrations for this year's marathon, half-marathon and 6.7-mile race are running about two weeks ahead of last year's pace. Runners from 16 countries and Canada have already registered. To register, go to www.craterlakerimruns.com.

Spring Thaw Mountain Bike Festival

Saturday-Sunday: Oregon's biggest mountain bike festival features two days of mountain bike events and racing, including the popular Spring Thaw Downhill Race on Sunday. Saturday includes a cross-country race, kids race and post-race party. The downhill race starts at Four Corners in the Ashland Watershed and takes place entirely on the Catwalk Trail. It's 1.7 miles of adrenalin rush to the bottom, where Catwalk intersects the Toothpick Trail. For registration details and other information, go to the Southern Oregon Mountain Bike Association's Web site at www.somba.org/springthaw. The event is produced entirely by volunteers and a portion of the proceeds go toward local trail-building efforts. If you would like to help, call Bob Quaccia 541-482-1143.

Mountain bike rides

Every Tuesday, Grants Pass: Bike Kraft hosts a weekly women's mountain bike ride that leaves at 6 p.m. from its shop in Grants Pass, 1448 Williams Hwy. The rides last about two hours and accommodate many skill levels. Contact Richard Amneus at 541-476-4935, or e-mail bikekraft@atiinternet.com.

Every Wednesday, John's Peak, Jacksonville: Sponsored by Cycle Analysis, these rides are for all ages and abilities and are group-oriented. They begin at 6:30 p.m. from Cycle Analysis in Jacksonville and include the John's Peak trail system. Every ride ends with free refreshments supplied by Cycle Analysis. Helmets are required. Contact Jana Jenson at 899-9190, or e-mail cyclea@internetcds.com. More information is available at the Southern Oregon Mountain Bike Association's Web site at www.somba.org.

Every Wednesday, Grants Pass: Bike Kraft hosts a weekly ride that meets and leaves at 6 p.m. from its shop, 1448 Williams Hwy. The rides last about two hours and accommodate many skill levels. Contact Richard Amneus at 476-4935, or e-mail bikekraft@atiinternet.com.

Every Thursday, Ashland: Cycle Sport's crew meets at the plaza at 6:30 p.m. Riders of all abilities welcome, but be able to climb for a few miles to get to the trails. The group will wait at intersections and there are often many outs for people who are time-pressed or gravity challenged. Single-track descents are of intermediate ability. Contact Thom Kneeland at 541-476-4935, or e-mail unoveloce@hotmail.com.

Every Thursday, Grants Pass: Don's Bike Center has a ride that starts at its shop at 5:30 p.m. Rides last about two hours and are tailored to intermediate to advanced riders. Don's is at 211 SW G St. Contact Don or Shawn at 541-471-3494.

Every Saturday, Grants Pass: The folks from Don's Bike Center meet at the Cathedral hills trailhead on Espy Road at 7:30 a.m. for two hours of riding. Contact Don or Shawn at 541-471-3494.

Siskiyou Velo Club

Every Saturday: Siskiyou Velo Club organizes two rides. A mellow 20-miler begins at 10 a.m. Starting locations and routes vary. Ride leader is Phil Gagnon: 488-4289. The second ride, led by Alex Hayes (call 857-0819), covers 20-plus miles at race pace. Starts at Medford Cycle Sport at 10 a.m.

Every Sunday: Training ride begins at 9 a.m. along the bike path behind Bad Ass Coffee Co. in Medford. Race pace, 20-plus miles. Ride leader is Glen Gann: 779-6986.

Every Monday: A 25-mile ride begins at 9:30 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 ride begins at 10 a.m. at Rogue Valley Roasting Co. in Ashland. Moderate terrain, brisk pace. No ride leader.

Saturday: Birdwalk to Roxy Ann Butte. Explore the chaparral along the road and trail up Roxy Ann Butte. Spot migratory songbirds returning to the Rogue Valley. Meet at 8 a.m. at Wild Birds Unlimited, 712 Crater Lake Ave., Medford. Leader is Steve Runnels, Klamath Bird Observatory volunteer and member. To register, call 541-770-1104.

June 13: Rogue Valley Audubon Society outing to Trees of Heaven and environs with Zince Zauskey. Meet at 8 a.m. in the parking lot at Shop 'N' Kart in Ashland for carpooling to Collier rest area off Highway 96. Half-day trip. Bring sack lunch and water. This will be the group's last field trip until September.

June 13: Birdwalk to TouVelle and Denman Wildlife Area with Wild Birds Unlimited and Klamath Bird Observatory. Enjoy breeding and nesting behavior of birds of the Rogue River riparian habitat. Meet at 8 a.m. at Wild Birds, 712 Crater Lake Ave., Medford. Leader is Steve Runnels. To register, call 541-770-1104.

July 11: Birdwalk to Willow Witt Ranch, Hyatt and Howard Prairie Lakes. Learn about birds and habitat restoration on private lands while visiting a hotspot for conifer forest birding below Grizzly Peak. Travel further into the Cascade Mountains to Hyatt and Howard Prairie Lakes. Expect to find white pelicans, vesper sparrows, mountain bluebirds, nesting osprey, swallow species and perhaps a few species of woodpeckers. Bring a lunch and water (all day field trip). Parking at Howard Prairie Resort is $4. Meet at 8 a.m. at Wild Birds Unlimited, 712 Crater Lake Ave., Medford. Leader is Harry Fuller, Klamath Bird Observatory volunteer and member. To register, call 541-770-1104.

August 8: Birdwalk to Mount Ashland. Group will look and listen for upper elevation birds, such as green-tailed towhee, mountain quail, purple and Cassin's finch, band-tailed pigeon, white-headed woodpecker, evening grosbeak, and Cooper's hawk, and possibly northern goshawk, and hermit, black-throated gray and Townsend's warblers. Bring a lunch if you'd like to eat in the picnic area. Meet at 8 a.m. at Wild Birds Unlimited, 712 Crater Lake Ave., Medford. Leader is Vince Zauskey, Klamath Bird Observatory volunteer and member. To register, call 541-770-1104.

Down by the Riverside: Day of Service

Saturday: May 16 is a statewide Oregon Day of Service, and the Center for Spiritual Living - Medford will participate by working with SOLV to pick up litter along the Rogue River at Tilomikh Falls, just upstream from Gold Hill. Everybody is invited to help. Native American storyteller Thomas Doty will be at the falls to greet helpers. He will bless the group's efforts, and share stories about the cultural significance of Tilomikh and the sacred salmon ceremony. Call Ogden Kellogg, at 855-7373, for more details, including carpooling ideas. Bring water, lunch and perhaps some food item to be share. Work starts at 10 a.m. The non-denominational Center for Spiritual Living is at 1119 Ellen Ave., Medford.

Tule Lake Migratory Bird Festival

Saturday: Airboat rides through Tule Lake Marsh, wild bird banding, children's wildlife activities and guided bus trips to local wildlife refuges are just a few of the free family events at the annual festival. The event is held at the Klamath Basin Wildlife Refuges visitor center from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. The free airboat tours of Tule Lake Marsh are expected to be the most popular event at the festival, so call 530-667-2231 early for reservations . Other featured events include bird-banding demonstrations, educational programs with live hawks and owls, children's wildlife art instruction, bird-mask making and wildlife crafts and games. The Klamath Blues Society will provide live music through the lunch hour.

Events requiring advanced reservations include the airboat rides (conducted between 10 a.m. and 2:30 p.m. at half-hour intervals), Lower Klamath Refuge guided wildlife discovery bus tour (9:30 to 11:30 a.m.), Tule Lake Refuge historic CCC camp tours (1:30 to 2:30 p.m. and 2:45 to 3:45 p.m.), and Tule Lake walking wetlands tour (1 to 2:30 p.m.). For additional information, visit www.fws.gov/klamathbasinrefuges or call 530-667-2231.

Shrubs of Southwestern Oregon

May 21: Which shrubs commonly grow in riparian areas, mixed conifer forests and oak woodlands? Max Bennett, forester and coauthor of the book "Field Guide to Shrubs of Southwestern Oregon," will highlight some of the beautiful native shrubs that grow in our region, identify some unsavory nonnative shrubs and discuss natural history and ecological shrub lore. Books will be available for purchase. Talk is at 7:30 p.m. in Room 171, Science Building, Southern Oregon University, Ashland. Sponsored by the Siskiyou Chapter of the Native Plant Society of Oregon. Everyone welcome. Contact Kristi Mergenthaler for details, 541-535-3659.

Old-Growth field trip

May 23: Visit a stand of large trees with one of this region's expert ecologists, Thomas Atzet, to learn about mature forests. Atzet worked for 30 years as the area ecologist on the Rogue, Siskiyou and Umpqua national forests. Participants will attend a short lecture and then proceed to a stand of large trees in the Cascades where participants get to decide for themselves whether the stand fits the definition for "old-growth" forest. The field trip, sponsored by the Southern Oregon Land Conservancy and North Mountain Park Nature Center, will include carpooling. Bring a snack or lunch. Ages 16 and up. Event is scheduled from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Cost is $22. Meet at North Mountain Park, 620 N. Mountain Ave., Ashland. Register at North Mountain Park by calling 541-488-6606 or register online at http://activenet4.active.com/ashlandparks.