At then end of 2021, Metro opened two parks in less than a month. Newell Creek Canyon Nature Park, in Oregon City, opened first, with Chehalem Ridge Nature Park opening right after. Chehalem Ridge, which is about a 15-minute drive south of Forest Grove, ranges over 1,260 acres of hilltops and it has 10 miles of trails with views that look over the Tualatin River Valley and onto the Coast Range.
When Metro bought Chehalem Ridge, it had been a timber farm for more than two decades, with densely packed Douglas fir trees creating a monoculture across most of the future park. Transforming the farm into varied, strong forest habitats started more than a decade ago, and the work is ongoing. While the restoration work was underway, Metro worked closely with Washington County community members through a partnership with Centro Cultural to design a park that would be inviting to the area's growing, diversifying community.
This restoration and the creation of the park is thanks to voters choosing to invest in nature. The park was finished with funds from the 2019 parks and nature bond and day-to-day operations are supported by the local option levy that was renewed in 2016.
See your new park in the Winter 2022 edition of Our Big Backyard.
Read the print version
Subscribe to the print edition
Subscribe to nature updates by email