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Powell Butte might be the best park on the east side of Portland for variety of trails and scenery.
The rather flat top of this volcanic hill is mostly open grassland, while the steep sides are forested.
Thus, you can come for an easy stroll or a more intense workout on these trails which are popular for walking, running, and cycling.
It’s also a good place to find wildlife, thanks to the diversity of habitat in forests and fields.
Even here at the margin of the city you may see rabbits, pheasants, hawks, deer, or even a fox. The loop mapped here is only one possibility of many on the interconnected paths.
This route begins at the main parking area and meanders out across the top of the butte.
Wildflowers bloom among the grasses in summer, and on a clear day the views to Mount Hood and other Cascade volcanoes are superb.
The trail then dips sharply down, entering the shade of tall Douglas firs and big-leaf maple.
Working its way around the sides of the butte, the trail bobs through a few small canyons that are particularly lush with vegetation.
A gradual incline leads near the top of the butte once more, but you can take the Elderberry Stairs steeply down, then return uphill for one final workout.
There’s no reason to follow this mapped route exactly, however, as it’s easy to wander and explore on the various paths, and you might find something new every time you visit. Sources: https://www.portland.gov/parks/powell-butte-nature-park https://friendsofpowellbutte.org/