The Bear Creek Greenway is an aptly named trail traveling across five communities in the Jackson County area. For most of the path, it parallels the winding creek of the same name, which can make for a truly peaceful adventure during less populated times. The trail connects at least eight different parks along the way, beginning at the Ashland Dog Park.
Start your day with an early morning trip to the dog park, where you can park your car, load up on water, and take a quick bathroom break (both of you!) before embarking on the first leg of this trail. Since the entire trail is almost 20 miles long, you’ll probably want to tackle it in pieces, trekking sections as an out-and-back trail so you can return to your car. From the dog park, it’s about a 3-mile walk to the next communal area – Wrangler’s Area Park. From there, you can either turn around or keep going to the next stop in Talent, Lynn Newbry Park, about another 2 miles.
Locals most commonly use the Bear Creek Greenway as a bike thruway. It has two-way paved roads expanding throughout the entire length of the path, and there are designated horse trails in some areas, as well. If you and Fido are the type that pre-fur a more strenuous activity, bring those bikes out and push it as far as you can go! On two-wheels (and four paws), this trip can take around 2 hours.
This heavily trafficked pathway runs parallel to the I-5 at times -- some parts of the walk even brush up against it. You can avoid this by sticking to the parts of the trail that are further away from the noise, like in the Ashland area. Remember, there are bathrooms and water fountains at almost every park on the way, so you can stop whenever nature is calling!