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Get Out: Aug. 3, 2012

Native Plant Society

Saturday, August 4: Hike to Observation Gap and Cow Creek Hollow (about one mile along the Pacific Crest Trail south of the road to Dutchman Peak fire lookout). From swaths of Epilobium siskiyouense along the PCT to the unusual blooms of Saxifraga odontoloma in wet meadows, floral riches of all sorts abound in this area where cowbells usually provide a musical accompaniment. Parking is very tight, so try to avoid bringing large vehicles. Meet 8:30 a.m. behind the Oil Stop on Ashland Street, just west of the BiMart/Shop'N Kart parking lot in Ashland, or 9:15 a.m. in the library parking lot in Jacksonville. Leader is Alex Maksymowicz, 541-482-1964.

Applegate Trails Association

Sunday, Aug. 19: Group will start at 9 a.m. by hiking a private trail system in the headwaters of Slagle Creek. From there the trail connects to BLM's Felton Trail, which connects to the Enchanted Forest Trail. Schmidt Family Vineyard is prepared to serve food and wine for the group after the hike. Rated moderate. Group will meet at the Applegate Store, 15095 Highway 238, Applegate. See www.applegatetrails.org.

Rogue Group Sierra Club backpacking trips

Friday-Sunday, Aug. 17-19: Buck Lake and Devil's Punchbowl in the Siskiyou Wilderness. Group will take a 1.8-mile hike to set up a base camp at Buck Lake on Friday evening. The next day is a 9 mile roundtrip hike with a 1,650-foot elevation gain. Devil's Punchbowl is a glacier-cut cirque with walls 1,500-feet high. Group is limited to eight people due to campsite availability at Buck Lake. To reserve a spot or for more information, email Noah Volz at noah@rhythmofhealing.com.

Saturday-Monday, Sept. 1-3: Sky Lakes Wilderness trip. Group will use the Cold Springs trailhead off Highway 140, about four miles after Lake of the Woods. The hike in will be a flat five miles to Margurette Lake. Day two, folks can fish and explore the many lakes in the area or take an 11-mile hike with 2,541 feet of climbing to Devils Peak, mostly on the PCT. Space is limited to 16. Noah Volz will lead, with Al Collinet assisting. To reserve a spot and for more information, email Volz at noah@rhythmofhealing.com.

Mount Ashland Hillclimb

Saturday Aug. 4: The 35th annual run covers 13.3 miles from downtown Ashland's Lithia Park and climbs on dirt roads and trails to finish on the Mount Ashland summit for more than 5,600 feet of climbing. All proceeds from the race go to the Ashland Woodlands and Trails Association. Registration is full for this year's race. For details, see www.mtashlandrun.com/registration.html.

Bicycle touring

Siskiyou Velo club member Phil Gagnon is organizing a series of self-supported bicycle tours for beginners. The tours are free other than your expenses for food, supplies and travel. For details, email Gagnon at star@mind.net.

Sunday-Saturday, Aug. 19-25: Roseburg eastern loop. This is strictly a camping tour. From Roseburg, group will ride east to Diamond Lake and do a large circle back to Roseburg via Lost Creek Lake, Trail and Canyonville. Group will camp each night and most days carry and prepare their own food, as there are few places to buy food on this route.

Sunday-Friday, Sept. 9-14: Eugene to Champoeg State Park. This is a loop tour that includes camping and motels. Group will mostly eat out as they pass through many little towns along the route. The terrain is Willamette Valley flat.

Recurring road rides

Every Saturday: A brisk, two- to four-hour ride begins at 9 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 begins at 10 a.m. Location and route varies. Call David Gibb at 541-899-9030.

Every Saturday: Slo-Mo ride covers 14 to 18 miles. Starting time and location varies. For details, call Phil Gagnon at 541-488-4289.

Every Sunday: Cycle Analysis in Jacksonville hosts a 2- to 3-hour road ride at 8 a.m. All fitness levels welcome. Riders regroup at major intersections, and there are cut-off spots to make the ride shorter if needed. Contact Jana Jenson at 541-899-9190, or email cyclea@internetcds.com.

Every Monday: Siskiyou Velo club 25-mile coffee ride begins at 9:30 a.m. at Colver Park in Phoenix and goes to Jacksonville; 25 mostly flat miles, 14 to 17 mph pace. Contact Ray Forsyth, 541-245-0312.

Every Wednesday: A 25- to 60-mile Siskiyou Velo Club ride begins at 10 a.m. at The Roasting Co. in Ashland. Some hills. Contact Wil Thomson, 541-482-4201.

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 or see 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 email cyclea@internetcds.com.

Every Saturday, Medford: This ride starts at Medford Cycle Sport, and the course varies from week to week, but riders can expect a brisk road ride that lasts 2 to 4 hours. Most rides include at least one (but usually two or three) 1- to 3-mile climbs. Call Alex at 541-857-0819 for information and starting time. Website is at www.roguecycle.com.

Siskiyou Field Institute

Saturday, Aug. 4: Get up close and personal with cave biology, geology and paleontology. A speleology field course will be held at Oregon Caves National Monument from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. The science of caves will be complemented by an off-trail caving trip, where you will be wriggling between boulders and stretching across crevices in the deepest parts of the cave. This off-trail experience is physically demanding and not for persons uncomfortable in small spaces. Caving equipment will be provided. Instructor is Elizabeth Hale. Tuition costs $50. For details, see www.thesfi.org or call 541-597-8530.

Saturday-Sunday, Sept. 8-9: Landscape Photography: From the Rivers to the Mountains. Photographer Lee Webb will lead a photographic exploration of the mountain peaks and river valleys of southwest Oregon. Day one focuses on Siskiyou mountains and meadows; Day two visits Siskiyou wetlands and rivers. Students can register for one or both days of the class. All levels of photographers are welcome. Tuition costs $50 for one day or $100 for both days. For details, see www.thesfi.org or call 541-597-8530.

North Mountain Park

Saturday, Aug. 11: Saturday morning birdwalks are held from 8 to 9 a.m. on the second Saturday of each month at North Mountain Park Nature Center, 620 N. Mountain Ave., in Ashland. Stroll through the park with local birding experts to see and hear a variety of birds that spend the summer in the Rogue Valley. Binoculars and field guides are available for checkout. Register online at www.ashland.or.us/register or call the nature center at 541-488-6606. All ages are welcome.