Outdoors

Looking for fun outdoor events? Here’s a list of fall happenings around the Tri-Cities

Tri-Cities is a place where we get to enjoy and appreciate the outdoors in so many amazing ways, especially in the fall.

There are places of beauty to go, and educational, fun and inspirational things to do that are organized by dedicated volunteers and numerous organizations to help the community and the environment.

Here’s a look at some of the upcoming events and recent outdoor project accomplishments in the area:

Bateman Island Bird Walk

The Lower Columbia Basin Audubon Society Chapter is having a bird walk on Bateman Island at 8 a.m. on Saturday, Oct. 5.

The event is free and open to the public. This walk happens on the first Saturday of every month.

Bring binoculars, sturdy shoes and dress for the weather. Meet at 7:50 a.m. at the Bateman Island Sign at Wye Park, Columbia Park Trail. For more information www.lowercolumbiabasinaudubon.org

Trail Work Season is Coming Up

The Badger and Candy mountain fall trail work season will be starting mid-October and ending around Thanksgiving.

The schedule calls for the usual annual trail maintenance tasks plus building a short trail on Candy that will be part of the Interpretive Loop Trail and getting a start on the route to Little Badger with a new half-mile trail from the top of the Sagebrush Trail heading east to Queensgate.

Enjoy our beautiful Indian Summer and donate some morning time to trail work. To volunteer and get on the trail work email list, send email to Jim Langdon trailmaster@friendsofbadger.org.

Native Plant Identification Signs on Candy Mountain Loop Trail

Friends of Badger Mountain worked with the local chapter of the Washington Native Plant Society to create and install 31 metallic signs designed to identify and describe the most common and noteworthy native plants on Candy Mountain.

This cooperative educational project was completed with CBC Welding doing the fabrication, Benton County and the Native Plant Society creating the labels, Friends of Badger volunteers painting and applying the labels and then installing them on the Loop Trail.

More educational markers to identify geologic ice-age flood formations and features are in the works and are scheduled to be installed later this fall. If you are interested in helping with this project send an email to David Comstock dccjmb@yahoo.com

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Plant signs on Candy Mountain Loop Trail. Paul Krupin

Native Plant Garden at Base of Canyon Trail at Trailhead Park

Volunteers created a Native Plant Garden at the base of the Canyon Trail near the kiosk in Trailhead Park. It currently includes sagebrush, grasses, and some native flowering plants.

Plans for the garden include expanding the number and variety of native plants represented and installing plant identification signs.

The vision is to make this area a beautiful and educational entrance to the trailhead. For more information on native plants www.cbwnps.org

Yellow Star Thistle Eradication Project

If you hiked Candy Mountain on Wednesday and Sunday mornings, you probably encountered dozens of volunteers wearing sturdy gloves and filling gigantic plastic bags on the slopes.

Between June 26 and Sept. 13, these dedicated volunteers spent a total of 478 hours on their hands and knees pulling, bagging and removing a noxious weed – the Yellow Star Thistle on every acre of the 200-acre Candy Mt. Preserve.

They filled and hauled away hundreds of bags and will return again next year.

The goal is the eradication of Yellow Star Thistle from the Candy Mountain Preserve and reintroduction of native species.

If you want to help, send an email to davidbeach47@gmail.com

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Candy Mountain Trailhead sign on Dallas Road. Paul Krupin

Access to Candy Mountain

Benton County has just about completed paving the gravel road – PR 669 — leading to the Candy Mountain parking lot.

The County will hydroseed the corridor during the fall.

Though the turn from Dallas Road is narrow, which was done for drainage reasons, there is a smoother approach and no more rocks. Benton County installed and completed an 8-foot wide paved pedestrian path along Dallas Road, with a pedestrian cross near PR669 to officially connect the Badger Mountain Centennial Preserve to the Candy Mountain Preserve.

Richland’s Badger Mountain project

The new steps at the beginning of the Canyon Trail by Trailhead Park are expected to be completed this fall by the city of Richland.

Until the trail opens, hikers are asked to honor the barriers that are in place to prevent trail damage and erosion.

You can access the upper part of the Canyon by hiking the bypass to the juncture. For more information, www.friendsofbadger.org

Wild Edible Plant Expert

Explore the Pacific Northwest’s mountains and valleys with award-winning author and culinary adventurer Langdon Cook.

He is on a quest to find the region’s most sought-after wild foods for the table.

Slides of foraged edibles in their habitat and in finished dishes will have you reaching for your boots, baskets and sauté pans.

He will give a talk and slide show at The Reach Museum on Oct. 16 at 7 p.m. Q&A and book signing to follow. Free and open to the public.

For information visit Latest Events at www.imacnw.org.

Red Mountain Hike Wine Dine

A special Hike Wine Dine event organized by Friends of Badger Mountain will be held on Oct. 20.

The plan is to have a guided vineyard hiking tour of Red Mountain starting at 4:15 p.m., do a wine tasting at Hedges Family Estate Winery about 5:15, with dinner starting at 5:30 p.m.

Cost is $40 per person, which includes guided hike, wine tasting and dinner catered by 13 Bones Urban BBQ. Limit of 65 people.

Register by sending an email to Joan Segna joansegna@gmail.com.

Chinook Cycling Club Fall Time Trials

The Chinook Cycling Club will hold the official Fall Time Trials on Saturday, Oct. 26. This mountain biking racing event starts at 10 a.m., on the Skyline and Langdon Trails.

For more information and to register for the event, visitwww.chinookcyclingclub.com

YMCA Trick-Or-Treat On The Trail

Every year on the Saturday before Halloween, the YMCA puts on a fun, family Halloween event.

Families and children are invited to enjoy a hike up Badger Mountain while dressed up in their favorite costumes.

Children of all ages trick-or-treat for healthy goodies along the trail.

After the Halloween hike, families stick around to enjoy a Harvest Party, which includes games and activities for the whole family to enjoy.

The event is on Saturday, Oct. 26, from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. at Trailhead Park. To register, visit http://ymcatricities.org

Paul Krupin is an avid local outdoor enthusiast and a member of the Intermountain Alpine Club www.imacnw.org. He can be reached at pjkrupin@gmail.com.
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