Hike #3: Boones Ferry to Lesser Park

The third route in our Self-Led hiking series is a challenging, yet beautiful loop through the southernmost parts of SW Portland.  Read on for more details.

Hike 3: Boones Ferry Road to Lesser Park
Name: Boones Ferry Road to Lesser Park
Neighborhood: Far Southwest in Portland, Mountain Park in Lake Oswego
Distance: 4.71 Miles
Elevation Change: 557 ft
Start/End Location: Oswego Town Square Shopping Center
Map Links: Mobile*   Browser   GPX Download

This walk is 4.71 miles in length but has over 1000 feet of elevation change as it climbs to the top of Mt. Sylvania at 975 feet. The route takes you through the highlands and lowlands of Mountain Park adjacent to the Far Southwest and Arnold Creek neighborhoods, and tops out at Nansen Summit for great views of the city and countryside. Most of the route is in Lake Oswego, as you skirt the boundary of Multnomah and Clackamas counties. The directions below begin and end at the New Seasons Market on Boones Ferry Road. However, it is a loop and therefore can be started at any point along the route. Alternative starting locations are: PCC Sylvania Campus, Lesser Park, or McNary Park. Be sure to check local closures and/or restrictions.

Begin this hike at the shopping center at 3 Monroe Parkway in Lake Oswego and head out southerly to Monroe Parkway and up the hill to McNary Parkway; continue up, go through the tunnel just past Condolea and up Churchill Downs back to McNary Parkway.  Go up the hill, turn right on Hidalgo, then left on Becket and right on Garibaldi. Now turn left onto the trail up to Nansen Summit and head left to the trail up to the little park on top. Hang out for a while, it was a steep climb up! Then, head down the path on the west side back to Nansen Summit and right for a hundred feet to the trail down to Garibaldi, and on down to Hidalgo. Left on Hidalgo and out to Kerr Parkway and the PCC Sylvania entrance.  Follow the app down K street and onto the campus by the Bookstore, Performing Arts Center, and on West to H street. Go right and take the path down to the sports track; head left into Lesser Park. The short trail through Lesser park has a Y just as you would exit: be sure and stay in the woods taking a hard left, go around and back up some to the arborvitae lining the exit to 55th pl. Go down to Jefferson Parkway and a few blocks east again following the app to Aquinas, then left onto a series of trails heading generally east. After crossing again in a tunnel under Jefferson Parkway the dirt trail heads steeply uphill. Again, follow the app all the way back up, under Kerr Parkway into the apartment complex,  through that and then down to Jefferson Parkway again, where a fairly new trail system can be followed down through the valley and all the way back to Kerr Parkway.  After going under the roadway you’ll arrive on Greenridge Dr and head right around to Monroe Parkway and straight into the shopping center lot where you began. Keep in mind that Kerr Parkway and Jefferson Parkway take big loops through this area and the trails cut under in nice tunnels. It is necessary to use either the route picture or the app to successfully navigate this route but it is well worth the effort.

*To follow this route, use the Explorer for ArcGIS App to follow along. Simply Download the Explorer for ArcGIS app and click here on any mobile device. The route is highlighted on an interactive map.

Don’t forget to use the hashtag #swtrails for your very best pictures.

Happy Trails,


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