Hike #13: Ainsworth Loop – East

Self-Led-Hike #13 passes through one of Portland’s oldest residential neighborhoods where you will get a rare view of the OHSU campus from the north side.  Read on for More details:

Name: Portland Heights Ainsworth East
Neighborhood: SW Hills Residential League
Distance: 2.19 miles
Elevation Change: 195 ft
Start/End Location: Spring Street just east of Vista Avenue
Map Links:   Mobile Map* Browser Map

This is a hilly urban walk through one of the oldest residential neighborhoods in SW Portland. This hike is all on streets or adjacent sidewalks through an area of homes built in the late 1800’s to the present time. The original homes were built along a streetcar route that ran from downtown Portland to Council Crest. Many offer spectacular views of the mountains to the east and downtown to the northeast. The route goes by Governor’s Park, a 5.4 acre plot of steep wooded hillside. It also goes by the front door of 2591 SW Buckingham St a home locally called the castle. Some of these streets are quite narrow and do not have room for more than one car. Practice safe walking and be sure to give way if a car comes down the street.

The route begins on SW Spring Street at Ainsworth Elementary and continues east to 16th where we turn right to go south on 16th to SW Elizabeth St.  Follow Elizabeth St uphill as it curves past nicely kept modern homes to connect with SW Davenport St where we turn left. Davenport continues uphill and passes through Governor’s Park then heads downhill to Canning St. You will get a good view of the North side of OHSU which looks so close that you could nearly walk to it!  However, crossing Duniway gulch at this point (not to mention all the backyards you would have to cross to get there) is nearly impossible!

At SW Canning St we turn left for one block to connect with SW Buckingham St and begin to climb back up the hill. Note the numerous stairs along the way! This is not an ADA friendly place. As we walk along the narrow Buckingham St we will pass the Castle, be sure to pause here for a glimpse of the great city views between homes. As we round a curve heading to the right the street name changes to SW Rivington St.

Continue along Rivington until you come to a sharp turn to the left at SW Myrtle. Head uphill (left) on Myrtle and follow it past impossibly beautiful houses to 21st Ave.  The road undulates for a block or two at 17th where the terrain levels off. One street past Vista is SW 21st where we take a left and proceed to the back side of Ainsworth school. On non-school days you can walk through the school yard, however, during school days you should walk around.   Once you arrive at the school, you are back to where you started!

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

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

Happy Trails,






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