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Get Out: May 23, 2014

Applegate Trails Association

Sunday, May 25: The historic Sundown Mine hides high on a ridge in the buckbrush just a bit off the Sundown Trail. The Applegate Trails Association invites you to see the mine and explore this flower-filled hike, a part of the Applegate Ridge Trail and on the boundary of the 5,700-acre Wellington LWC (Lands with Wilderness Characteristics). Much of the trail runs along the edge of a vast open meadow offering breathtaking views into the Applegate Valley, Forest Creek, Thompson Creek and the distant Red Buttes. At three miles round trip and with 400 feet of elevation change, the hike is rated moderate. For a few, a longer four-mile loop hike is available (rated moderate to difficult). The group will meet at 9 a.m. at BLM's Bunny Meadows Staging Area (intersection of Forest Creek Road and Longanecker Road). RSVP is appreciated. Contact David Calahan at 541-899-1226 or david@applegatetrails.org. For more information see www.applegatetrails.org. ATA would appreciate a $5 donation at sign-in.

Friends of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument

Saturday, May 24: Birding hike along the Pacific Crest Trail, from 7:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. The outing will start with a short introduction on bird calls, then will travel south on the PCT to explore habitat shared by mountain quail, Cassin's vireo, rufous hummingbird and other birds. Group will meet at the Pilot Rock Trailhead off of Old Highway 99. For information, email cascadesiskiyou@gmail.com.

Saturday, June 20: Botanist John Villella will lead a wildflower and butterfly hike along the Hobart Bluff Trail from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Group will meet at the Hobart Bluff Trailhead on Soda Mountain Road. For information, email cascadesiskiyou@gmail.com.

Siskiyou Upland Trails Association

Saturday, June 7: Five-mile hike on the Sterling Mine Ditch Trail. Group will meet at 10 a.m. at the Tunnel Ridge Trailhead on Little Applegate Road and hike to the Bear Gulch Trailhead. Directions can be downloaded from SUTA's website at www.sutaoregon.org. SUTA will provide home-baked treats. RSVP to sutaoregoncontact@gmail.com so organizers will know who to wait for and can plan treats.

Rogue Valley Walkers

Saturday, May 24: 10K "Name that Park" walk in Grants Pass. Meet at 8:45 a.m. for registration in the parking lot of Riverside Park, 304 E. Park St. For more information, call 541-245-9356.

Lithia Park nature walks

Fridays, Sundays and Wednesdays: Ashland Parks and Recreation hosts guided walks through Lithia Park at 10 a.m. The walks last about an hour and a half and cover a variety of topics about the park. Meet at the park entrance at the Ashland Plaza. Free. Call 541-488-5340.

Run The Ditch Trail

Saturday, May 24: The annual five- and 10-mile runs along the Sterling Mine Ditch Trail are sponsored by Southern Oregon Runners and the Siskiyou Upland Trails Association. The runs start at 9 a.m. at the Tunnel Ridge Trailhead in the Little Applegate. For race details and registration, see the race calendar at www.sorunners.org.

Agony of DeFeet

Thursday, May 29: The 35th annual run features 2K and 5K runs through rural neighborhoods around Griffin Creek Elementary School. The 5K goes uphill to the turnaround and downhill to the finish line. To register, see the race calendar at www.sorunners.org.

Gold Dust Days run

Saturday, June 7: The annual race starts at 8:30 a.m. at Ray's Food Place in Gold Hill. Both the 5K and 10K courses are flat and fast. The 5K goes out and back. The 10K is a loop course. To register, see the race calendar at www.sorunners.org.

Slo-mo group rides

Saturday, May 24: Siskiyou Velo club is organizing free, introductory bicycle rides in May on the Bear Creek Greenway for beginners and people who are getting back into cycling. This week's ride starts at 9 a.m. at Hawthorne Park in Medford. On May 31, it will start at 9 a.m. at Lynn Newbry Park in Talent. To register, email Phil Gagnon at star@mind.net or call 541-488-4289. For information, see www.siskiyouvelo.org

Northern California Cycle Challenge

Saturday, May 24: Northern California Cycle Challenge and Cycle Siskiyou will hold a cycling event featuring 100-, 45- and 35-mile loops that will end at the Favell Museum in Klamath Falls. The rides will showcase remote areas of the Tulelake/Klamath Falls region in Northern California and Southern Oregon. For information, see northerncaliforniacyclechallenge.com or contact Laurie Bagley at lauriebagley@gmail.com or 541-399-7226.

Siskiyou Velo rides

Some of the club rides listed below are leisurely; others intense. Choose one that's right for you. All rides include rest stops for coffee and social time. All riders are required to have safe bikes, wear helmets and carry a spare tube/tools and water. Instruction on safe riding and group ride etiquette are available on all rides.

Every Saturday: Velo Slo-Mo rides begin at various morning hours from different locations. Pace: 7 to 10 mph over 12 to 18 miles on mostly flat terrain. Contact Phil Gagnon at 541-488-4289.

Every Saturday: Brisk rides begin at various morning hours from different locations. Pace: 19 to 23 mph over 50 to 65 miles on mostly hilly terrain. Contact Dennis Cramer at 541-773-5804.

Every Monday: Coffee rides begin at 10:30 a.m. at Colver Park in Phoenix and go to Jacksonville. Pace: 17 mph average over 25 miles. Contact David Chapman at 541-488-0152.

Every Wednesday: Coffee rides begin at 11 a.m. at Rogue Valley Roasting Company in Ashland. Pace: 17 mph average over 35 to 60 miles with some hills. Contact John Bullock at 541-488-7962.

Rogue Valley Audubon Society

Wednesday, June 4: On the first Wednesday of every month, RVAS conducts a bird walk at Agate Lake, about two miles east of the Highway 62/140 intersection. Birders should meet at the parking lot on the far side of the lake across from the boat dock. The walk begins at 8:30 a.m. and will end before noon. This is an ongoing citizen-science project to record the numbers of the different species observed by the walk participants. You don't need to be an experienced birder to join in, but taking part will help you become one. Coordinator and leader of the walk is Murray Orr (541-857-9050, mworr2@charter.net). Contact him if you are willing to help.

Ashland watershed work party

Saturday, June 7: Join Southern Oregon Land Conservancy, Ashland Parks & Recreation and REI for National Trails Day at Oredson-Todd Woods and Siskiyou Mountain Park above Ashland. Volunteers will be improving water bars and trail tread, as well as brushing and chipping the trails. REI will provide morning coffee and snacks, and all volunteers will receive REI volunteer T-shirts. To register, see www.rei.com/event/58038/session/93149. For more information, call 541-482-3069.

Trailhead dedication

Saturday, June 7: For National Trails Day, the Applegate Trails Association will hold a ribbon-cutting at 10 a.m. at Long Gulch Trailhead on the Applegate Ridge Trail's Heart Trail. The event is to celebrate a grant that allows the group to establish picnic tables and informational kiosks at five trailhead parking areas and make site improvements such as grading, gravel and boulders. The Heart Trail cuts through the heart of the 5,700-acre Wellington Wild Lands. This old mining-road-turned-trail provides a five-mile ridge hike (out and back) with modest elevation gain. The ribbon-cutting will be followed by free food and music. To get there from Jacksonville, travel 4.9 miles southwest on Highway 238 toward Ruch and turn right on Forest Creek Road. Follow the signs to the top of Forest Creek. To carpool, meet at 9:30 at the Bunny Meadows Staging Area (0.7 mile up Forest Creek). See www.applegatetrails.org.

Weed Whomping Wednesday

Wednesday, June 18: Help the Southern Oregon Land Conservancy control yellow starthistle on a gorgeous, privately protected piece of land in the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument (Sky King Cole) off Pilot Rock Road. Your service will be rewarded with treats and educational pauses. The group will meet some mountain wildflowers and enjoy the beauty while pulling invasive plants. The group will carpool at 9:30 a.m. from the SOLC office at 84 Fourth St. in Ashland; meet at the C street entrance. For more information, call 541-482-3069.