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First look at potential trail designs for Salmonberry Corridor

Posted by on June 23rd, 2014 at 2:58 pm

Potential cross-section of one segment of the Salmonberry Corridor via Walker Macy’s “Plan Book”.

An exciting evolution in the public process for the Salmonberry Corridor kicks off this week with two public open houses.

Walker Macy, the landscape architecture firm working with Oregon State Parks and the Oregon Department of Forestry to develop a master plan for the project, will unveil detailed design options under consideration for the first time. At the open house events, attendees will get to offer feedback on cross-section options, path alignment, location of trailheads, and more.

The project aims to create an off-highway path from the town of Banks in Washington County to Nehalem Bay and Tillamook on the Oregon Coast — a full 86 miles through a (mostly) abandoned railway corridor that winds through thick forests.

Below are more images taken from an excerpt of the “Plan Book” Walker Macy will share in its entirety at the town halls (download PDFs of Plan Book excerpts part 1 and part 2):


The master planning process began in mid-2013 and is expected to wrap up by November of this year. Once the master plan is complete, project backers can start looking for funds to implement it. For more information contact Oregon State Trails Coordinator Rocky Houston at (503) 986-0750 or rocky.houston@oregon.gov.

Here are the details on this weeks town hall meetings:

    West End – Tillamook
    Date: June 24, 2014
    Time: 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
    Location: Port of Tillamook Bay, Officer’s Mess Hall (6018 Hangar Rd, Tillamook, OR)

    East End – Banks
    Date: June 25, 2014
    Time: 5:30 – 7:30 p.m.
    Location: Banks Fire Hall (300 Main St., Banks, OR)

— Learn more about this project in our Salmonberry Corridor archives.


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  • Peter R. June 23, 2014 at 3:47 pm

    Please don’t pave it! Compact aggregate works fine. Check out the Northern Rail Trail in New Hampshire, 57 miles. No pavement! Crushed aggregate and it is an awesome trail to ride on. I used to live about 5 miles from where the southern terminus is in Boscawen, NH. http://northernrailtrail.org/

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    • Corey Burger June 24, 2014 at 9:26 am

      Trails should be paved, they attract far more users if they are.

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      • Mick O June 24, 2014 at 11:11 am

        Would you support turning it into a highway then? Wouldn’t that attract more users? My point is that “attracting users” is a goal, but not the only goal when developing trails.

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      • Kenji June 24, 2014 at 11:20 am

        Aggregate is much much cheaper. And if the volume is there then it may be worth it to look at using asphalt

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      • dan June 24, 2014 at 11:21 am

        2 thumbs up for paving, I’m not trendy enough to have a dedicated gravel bike.

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      • dave June 24, 2014 at 11:40 am

        (citation needed)

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    • Jeff P June 24, 2014 at 12:13 pm

      Agreed. If Mother Nature continually beat back the rail line – a gravel ballasted base – why does anyone think that any pathway beyond a forest service type trail will have a better chance? This is a wild area – not Beaverton!

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      • Chris I June 24, 2014 at 12:30 pm

        Perhaps a phased approach is in order? A paved off-street route the the coast would be a world-class destination for touring riders. A gravel route is useful, but wouldn’t be world-class. I would like to see the entire route completed with gravel ballast at first. This would provide a continuous connection for adventure riders. As popularity increases, funding could be obtained to pave various sections, starting at either end first, and eventually completing the entire length.

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    • grimm June 24, 2014 at 7:56 pm

      I once rode the Airline State Park Trail in CT. I rode it on a lightly loaded road bike with 23c tires. It was one of the highlights of the trip. No gravel specific anything was needed.

      In fact I would say we should really consider if pavement makes sense in the dense, wet forest of the coast range I anticipate pavement to get pretty mossy without frequent servicing.

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  • Charley June 23, 2014 at 4:38 pm

    What about the Supreme Court decision that lets private property owners sue for the value of their land after the rail line no longer operates?

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  • GlowBoy June 23, 2014 at 7:29 pm

    I think most of this route on public land, hopefully reducing the impact of what the Supremes just did. Also, I wouldn’t worry about NIMBY lawyers too much. Hundreds of rail-trails have been built across the country, despite heavy initial opposition by vision-challenged NIMBYs to nearly every one.

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  • dave June 23, 2014 at 7:46 pm

    Wish it included an actual, like, trail. It’s looking a gift horse in the mouth and all, but asphalt and bark chips is a big letdown from the brief and unrealistic fantasy I had of 86 miles of actual singletrack winding through the coast range.

    Oh well, back to holding my breath for the PCT to open to cyclists.

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    • rainbike June 24, 2014 at 7:14 am

      Keep the PCT closed to cyclists.

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      • dave June 24, 2014 at 10:06 am

        Why?

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        • rainbike June 24, 2014 at 10:31 am

          For all the reasons that have already been extensively argued on bp. The two sides will probably never agree. Just wanted to balance your opinion by posting my own.

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          • dave June 24, 2014 at 1:03 pm

            No, and I didn’t mean to hijack the Salmonberry conversation with PCT nonsense. I just wanted to give the context for those of us that dream of a truly long-distance mountain bike trail somewhere in the PNW.

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        • Chris I June 24, 2014 at 12:32 pm

          Most of it runs in wilderness areas. I don’t even know why there is a discussion here.

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          • Dan Kaufman June 24, 2014 at 12:52 pm

            Seems like there is a lot of speculation here from people who have not yet been involved. The organizers really need you to attend the meeting for more information and to voice your opinions tonight (in Tillamook) and tomorrow (in Banks) is your chance to be heard, learn, and hear local concerns!

            Here is what I have gathered since getting involved last October:

            IF we are able to continue to gathering support and funding to move forward, there are four distinct sections to tackle.
            A-Valley
            B-Salmonberry
            C-Nehalem
            D-Coastal
            Each section has it’s own challenges and distinct user groups. Some parts of section D, for example will not allow equestrians. The coast and Nehalem section could be rails with trails, beyond that rail-banked to trails. We will likely see all types of surfaces from natural dirt deep in the Salmonberry to Concrete on parts of the Coastal Section and a variety in-between. The original vision was for a paved path the entire length but the feasibility of that is just too limited.

            If you can figure out how to get to Banks tomorrow afternoon or (hint, hint) lead a pedalpalooza ride there, please do!

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  • bikesalot June 24, 2014 at 6:06 am

    I hope some actual trail users show up for the meeting in Banks this time. We felt like the only ones in the room last time in a frequently hostile environment. It was sounding like the folks in Tillamook “get it” and are very supportive of the trail. Not so much at the meeting in Banks.

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    • Dan Kaufman June 24, 2014 at 11:36 am

      Yes, show up tomorrow in Banks. Find out more about the trail and how it will likely be a variety of surface types depending on the area and use.

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    • notrail June 24, 2014 at 10:18 pm

      I have an idea, how about we hold a meeting about we have a meeting near your house about putting a trail thru your backyard where people are looking in your windows. Maybe then you will understand why people who will be affected every day ar upset and not happy, what you call a hostile environment.

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      • Dan Kaufman June 25, 2014 at 7:52 am

        I hear what you are saying, but I already do have a trail next to my backyard and also a street (and sidewalk) in front of my house. But it’s not my property. On whole, I consider it a positive.

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      • Yes2AnotherTrail June 25, 2014 at 10:42 am

        Uh, most people have pathways adjacent to their property where people can look in their windows. They’re called sidewalks. In other words, I’m not sympathetic. You don’t own that property, the public does. Just because it has been unused for the past few years doesn’t give you the exclusive right to say how it will be used in the future.

        The same type of “the sky is falling” arguments were made when the Banks Vernonia Trail was developed. Now everybody loves it (and I live along that trail).

        Don’t like people looking in your backyard? Build a fence. At least bicycles are lots quieter than the trains used to be.

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        • John Hamel June 25, 2014 at 10:46 pm

          Yea your right you do have more pathways and you chose to live there. We chose to live here where there wasnt a sidewalk and now you want to force us to have one. Youare right that this is public property and that gives me just as much right or more to say what happens as you. I pay local taxes to upkeep local roads, emergency responders, and utilities. You get to live where ever you live and come use the things we pay for. I guarantee we don’t use your sidewalk.

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  • Joe June 24, 2014 at 10:00 am

    I wanta ride to the coast.. haha sooo stoked about this! away from autos too :)

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  • Terry D June 24, 2014 at 11:55 am

    “Salmonberry Corridor: Garibaldi to Barview” is in Region one and was in the running for Connect V grants from lottery funds for $2 million but it was not recommended for advancement to the final round. The panel recommended $4 million for the Port of Saint Helen’s for possible Oil, ethanol and coal export though. I do not have the link handy, but BP.org did an article a little bit ago on the possible awards.

    It is fine to plan, but without the state prioritizing funding this plan will collect dust. Do we want sustainable development, and the tourism dollars that go with it….or do we want to export fossil fuels to China? It seems the State of Oregon says one thing…and does another.

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    • Dan Kaufman June 24, 2014 at 12:34 pm

      Spot on, Terry D. Plenty of lip service though!

      We probably won’t see much change until there are political consequences for turning our state into a doormat.

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  • Eric June 24, 2014 at 1:57 pm

    I think carpet would be far better. A nice high pile one maybe?
    Or artificial turf if too expensive.

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  • Chaz October 30, 2014 at 12:57 pm

    Mt. bikers can ride on paved paths, Road bikers can’t ride on grave trails (easilly). Seems to me two “cans” are better than a can/can’t.

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