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Get wild hiking Forest Park's woods

Portland, United States

Check local COVID-19 restrictions before booking

Experience hosted by Sarah

3 hours
Includes food, drinks
Up to 8 people
Hosted in English

What you'll do

Hike in the wildest place you'll ever be in a city, Portland's 5,200-acre wood, peopled with ghosts, witches and great stories of the new inhabitants, and the very very old.

Hiking on Forest Park's Wildwood Trail is an immersion, what we call "forest bathing," and here we feel the energies of both vitality and stasis. In this fluid place that exists both in and out of time —within a minute of leaving a Portland street — you can forget you are still in a city.

We start at Clearing Cafe, a jumping-off point for this 4.5 mile (7 km) hike in this densely forested area that limns the city's northwestern quadrant. We’ll hike up to the quixotic Witch’s Castle. We will tell you how it has gathered its energy in the decades since its damage in the 1962 Columbus Day windstorm, and in the castle, connect to the women whose stories thread through this place. Dark stories filled this place since the beginning of Portland history.

From here we head up the hill, stopping to see streams cascading into basalt-lined pools, beautiful moss- and fern-covered Western redcedars and big leaf maples, the towering Douglas-firs. We’ll arrive at the Pittock Mansion to view the city laid out before us before descending into Washington Park, through your choice of secret staircases and paths, or a hike across the brand-new pedestrian crossing over Burnside Blvd - in all about 1,000 feet elevation.
Other things to note
The hike is 4.5-5 miles (7-8 km), with about 1,000 feet of elevation gain, with lots of uneven terrain (but nothing technical). The first three miles contain some steep but doable climbs. Most guests in moderate shape find it a fun challenge -- but it can be difficult for less active guests.
Hike in the wildest place you'll ever be in a city, Portland's 5,200-acre wood, peopled with ghosts, witches and great stories of the new inhabitants, and the very very old.

Hiking on Forest Park's Wildwood Trail is an immersion, what we call "forest bathing," and here we feel the energies of both vitality and stasis. In this fluid place that exists both in and out of time —within a minute of leaving a Portland street — you can forget…

Sarah's commitment to safety

This host committed to Airbnb’s COVID-19-related safety and cleaning guidelines—including adhering to social distancing guidelines, practicing good hygiene, and ensuring that all participants wear a mask.
Learn more

What's included

  • Food
    Our favorite locally-made trail mix is always stocked in guide backpacks.
  • Drinks
    We bring extra water along, but we encourage guests to bring reusable water...
From $50
/ person
Wed, Jan 20
9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
$50 per person
$50 per person
Thu, Jan 21
9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
$50 per person
$50 per person
Fri, Jan 22
9:00 AM - 12:00 PM
$50 per person
$50 per person

Meet your host, Sarah

Host on Airbnb since 2019
  • 14 Reviews
  • Identity verified
I'm Sarah Gilbert, co-founder of Around Portland Tours and together with my partners & guides Madi, Edwin, Jeri and Jonathan will host the experiences. As a forest witch, I have taught our guides how to honor the energy of a forest and to perform meditation and rituals within it; we'll weave you as guests into the experience we revere as our holy place.

I'm a published writer of essays and professional storyteller, and the narrative around which this tour is based is a collaboration between us, writers and route designers, as a movable narrative, what we call place-based storytelling. We bring you to places that we as story creators know intimately and are bursting to share.

See what we do on Instagram: @aroundportlandtours

We're all dedicated hikers, and our lives are so much better for it. Can we share the love with you?
I'm Sarah Gilbert, co-founder of Around Portland Tours and together with my partners & guides Madi, Edwin, Jeri and Jonathan will host the experiences. As a forest witch, I have taught our guides how to honor the energy of a forest and to perform meditation and rituals within it; we'll weave you as guests into the experience we revere as our holy place.

I'm a published writer of essays and professional storyteller, and the narrative around which this tour is based is a collaboration b…
Co-hosts:
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Where you'll be

Our tour starts in NW Portland in the neighborhood known simply as "Forest Park" by locals, and steps (literally) off a bridge, descending down into another world, a 5,200-acre forested park. We'll walk the Wildwood Trail, visit the Witches Castle, often see our favorite birds (and harbingers of transformation) at the Pittock Mansion viewpoint, and walk a locals-only path from there to the Rose Garden--one we learned only through dozens of hikes.

Rated 5.0 out of 5 from 14 reviews.

Mallory
December 2020
This was SUCH a treat! She knew the area super well and had lots of interesting stories peppered into the hike. It’s definitely a steep hike at certain points, but a very nice pace. Definitely do this tour!
Gilyanne
December 2020
I had an amazing experience with Sarah. As we hiked up 1000 feet she spoke on history, folklore and stopped to enjoy the beautiful scenery.
Stacia
October 2020
I am new to Portland and Sarah really provided a thorough hike through an area I have never been and knew much of the history, geography, geology and land formation of the region. This experience provided a great snapshot of nature that I wanted to see. I highly recommend Sarah and this experience!
I am new to Portland and Sarah really provided a thorough hike through an area I have never been and knew much of the history, geography, geology and land formation of the region.…
Anderson
October 2020
I got the pleasure of going on this experience alone and it was pretty neat! Lots of great picture moments. Sarah kept me entertained with stories of the beautiful stretches of trails you’ll see at Forest Park. She is very knowledgable about the history and foliage of the area. Fun stuff! Be prepare to hike at least 3 miles.
I got the pleasure of going on this experience alone and it was pretty neat! Lots of great picture moments. Sarah kept me entertained with stories of the beautiful stretches of tra…
Alyssa
February 2020
This was a really wonderful experience. I really enjoyed the hike and hearing some of the stories of Portland and Forest Park. Highly highly recommended!
Arian
December 2019
This was such a cool experience. My friend and I really felt accomplished after our hike. I don’t think we would have made it without Sarah. She was really nice and helped us to remember to stop and enjoy the cute little things nature has to offer.
This was such a cool experience. My friend and I really felt accomplished after our hike. I don’t think we would have made it without Sarah. She was really nice and helped us to re…

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Activity advisory

Expert industry partners
Every adventure follows industry guidelines. We partnered with the Adventure Travel Trade Association, expert leaders in adventure travel, to define best practices and standards for safety.
Know your comfort level
Please note outdoor activities carry risks, and you may be exposed to dangerous situations as part of this experience. Make sure you can participate safely given your abilities and the conditions (such as location, weather, and equipment).

Things to know

Cancellation policy

Any experience can be canceled and fully refunded within 24 hours of purchase, or at least 7 days before the experience starts.

Guest requirements

Up to 8 guests ages 6 and up can attend.

What to bring

Comfortable hiking shoes that can handle occasional mud

Layers for our cool mornings and frequent rain showers (especially October - May)