Mt. Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey Tour

Experience "Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey" with your class. Participants will learn about both the Rivers and the Forests in this inter-disciplinary approach that also illustrates how history and culture relates to the natural environment.

Spend time with your class amongst giants  --- the Ancient Trees of Mount Hood. This 33-acre Old-Growth site consists of Douglas-Fir, Cedar, and Hemlock, in addition to Cottonwood, Big-Leaf Maple, and Oak, which dominate the overhead canopy, leaving one to pursue their field studies, to write in their journal, to capture what they can with their art, and to even question their role in Nature and how they can live together in harmony. There is also a small lake, river, wetlands and lots of wildlife and Salmon.

Visually, those special places visited during "Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey", can be overwhelming. There are towering trees, some hundreds - while others are thousands - of years old. Downed logs accent this special ecosystem, forming unique nutrient-rich beds where new trees and plants can sprout. Snarled "Snags" and "Wildlife Trees" provide homes for many species of animals, as well as artistically transitioning the "Riparian Zones".

Within the confines of Mount Hood's Old-Growth, the Salmon River sings its eternal songs. Born on the snow and ice-packed slopes of this Mountain the Native Americans call "Wy'East", it flows through Canyons and Meadows, and then drops over cliffs in the form of Waterfalls.

The Salmon River moves towards its mouth, where it joins the Sandy River with a determination that makes one believe that it will always be with us. Huge boulders, torn from Mount Hood during its eruptions, slows its waters and disrupts its wildness, while logs, downed trees, and root wads create pools and a stillness that will make one halt in their tracks and contemplate where they have been and where they are going.

Here, within the waters of this great waterway that Native Americans have sometimes referred to as "Coyote's River", the remnants of some once-great populations of fish still survive. Salmon, Steelhead, Sea-Run Trout, and Lamprey Eel continue their struggle with their anadromous existence, where they are born in the high-mountain streams, swim to the Ocean where they spend years, and then return some four years later to spawn in these waters.

It is here that the participants of "Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey" can trek amongst an impressive landscape that serves as the home of many wildlife species. Deer, Elk, Coyote, Cougar, Bobcat, Raccoon, Badger, Mink, Porcupine, Bald and Golden Eagles, Owls and Hawks of all species, and hundreds of different types of birds, including the
cantankerous Ravens and scolding Jays, all live in or utilize the Old-Growth and the River and its riparian area.

Our "Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey" can introduce you to new places for exploration and study. These could be giant trees that occupy an Old-Growth Forest, a small Lake, River, Wetlands, or lots of habitat for fish and wildlife.

"Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey" takes you to places dominated by peacefulness. Standing beneath these "Giants of Time", you can hear the callings of Nature --- the wind as it reaches its presence through the Forest, the rain as it blesses the landscape, the River moving forth in its changing moods of the different seasons as its currents make their timeless sweep of its stream channel, and the birds who capture the excitement in the air with their songs.

Standing beneath the giant trees, participants in "Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey" will see where, at one time, Native Americans came to strip bark off of Cedar trees to make baskets for Huckleberries. Once made, these First People would venture up from this point onto the adjacent Huckleberry Mountain to pick in fields where their tribe had been coming since the beginning of time.

Along the River, one can still see the place where for centuries Native Americans had constructed a fish trap and then speared fish. Nearly forgotten today, the participants in "Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey" can stand in the footsteps of these First People and learn about the philosophy of the First People, why you must have respect for Nature, and why you must always utilize what you harvest and never waste anything.

Through our "Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey", you are provided with a unique outdoor classroom which will allow you to study environmental science, fisheries, social studies, language arts, history, art, and more. These special places of Nature that we visit can be utilized to write, to sketch, to research, or just sit down and have a quiet conversation with one another or even with one's self.

"Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey" introduces you to what has been with us from the beginning of time, or as the First People say: "since time immemorial". Let the Cascade Geographic Society design a unique and special field trip or field studies outing to fit your needs through our "Mount Hood's Old-Growth Wilderness Odyssey". Give us a call at (503) 622-4798 for more details. We will design a program to fit your needs. 

If you have questions, comments or concerns please feel free to contact the Cascade Geographical Society.

Cascade Geographic Society
P.O. Box 398
Rhododendron, Oregon 97049
(503) 622-4798

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