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Nature Trail / Wild Cherry Loop



8.1 mile 13.1 kilometer point to point
92% Runnable


Ascent: 1,071' 326 m
Descent: -1,063' -324 m
High: 940' 286 m
Low: 322' 98 m


Avg Grade: 5% (3°)
Max Grade: 22% (13°)


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Trail shared by Todd Johnson

An eight-mile loop route that's popular with local trail-seekers.

Todd Johnson

Features Fall Colors · River/Creek


A good introduction to trail navigation in Forest Park, this route features portions of the super popular NW Leif Erikson Drive Trail and Wildwood Trail - National Recreation Trail. Along the way, you'll find a couple of fun ascents and descents all of which are connected by smooth single- and doubletrack.

Runner Notes

Parking at the trailhead gets tight, as it's a neighborhood. In the morning, runners and cyclists frequent the Clearing Cafe down the hill on Thurman for post-run coffee and pastries. Tuesday evenings at 6:30 a group run uses this route as the longer of two options. For more information, visit their Facebook page.


Begin at the Thurman Road trailhead, and head for the NW Leif Erikson Drive Trail. Leif is a wide lane through the woods, with a steep slope up to a ridge on the lefthand side when headed north. The trail surface on is mostly gravel. White mile markers are present every quarter mile, which will help you make your way up Leif for about three miles. Then turn left onto the Nature Trail.

This portion of the route is the most idyllic. The Nature Trail meanders along and crisscrosses a stream briefly before heading up a steep hill to dead end at the Wildwood Trail - National Recreation Trail. At the intersection you'll find a clearing with a picnic table.

You'll work along the Wildwood Trail - National Recreation Trail another four-plus miles, then take a left onto Wild Cherry Trail. Wildwood and Wild Cherry are both singletrack trails through dense woods. Trees fallen across these trails are not uncommon.

Wild Cherry will bring you back to Leif at the portapotty about a quarter mile from where you started; take a right and continue on back to the gate.

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Aug 12, 2019
Pat Catalano
Great shady run 8.3mi — 1h 36m
May 18, 2019
Sean Koyano
Apr 28, 2019
Spencer Giles
Amazing conditions and perfect weather. 9mi — 1h 35m
Apr 22, 2019
Sarah Soff
8mi — 1h 49m
Nov 6, 2018
M Swank
Sep 13, 2018
Scott Urbatsch
Jun 9, 2018
Maddie Evans
Wear the right shoes. Wildwood is ok but the Leif Erickson road part of it was awful. All stone jutting out. 7.8mi
Feb 11, 2018
Paxton Gehling
Great run, with pretty good trail conditions 8.7mi

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Trail Ratings

  3.9 from 10 votes


in Forest Park


  3.9 from 10 votes
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A woman takes some time at lunch to run the Dogwood Trail. Photo by Bill Cunningham
Aug 27, 2015 near West Haven, OR
A runner makes his way up the Keil Trail. Bill Cunningham Photo
Aug 27, 2015 near West Haven, OR
Wild Cherry Trail
Jul 19, 2019 near West Haven, OR
Descending Nature Trail by the stream
Dec 18, 2019 near West Haven, OR
A couple enjoy the Wild Cherry Trail. Bill Cunningham Photo
Aug 27, 2015 near West Haven, OR
A mother and son hike on the Erikson Trail with their dog. Bill Cunningham Photo
Aug 27, 2015 near Portland, OR


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