Ranked as on of the best outdoor towns in the Unites States, Ashland, Oregon has a myriad of hiking trails, literally right out the front door. Because Ashland is situated within the Rogue River Valley, it is boxed in with steep terrain on all sides. Trails up these mountains offer tremendous views of the town and surrounding areas. Earlier this week a friend and I planned for a trek up White Rabbit trail in the southwest mountains above town.
The most direct access to this trailhead is up Park Street, on the south end of town. The road looks ominious, but it’s a great warm up for the actual trail at the top. Follow the roads slight curve left as it turns to gravel and after ¾ of a mile signs will mark the way for “White Rabbit” This trail is well maintained and the city of Ashland stocks it with garbage bins in a few places and doggie-do bags. As the trail progresses, its gets no steeper but views of the valley below become more and more frequent.
A great time to go is in the evening, as the sunsets from up here can be spectacular. For those with enough stamina, at the top of white rabbit trail, near where it converges with the Alice in Wonderland trail is a flat area, lightly wooded with an array of massive boulders; some of these bounlders have been converted into primitive shelters and are a treat to see. On this hike, bring plenty of water and a snack because you burn a lot on the switchbacks. Don’t forget to take a picture break at one of the numerous benches along the trail.
-Written by Brandon Worthing, guide for Indigo Creek Outfitters.