OLYMPIA – April 17, 2015 – The Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission invites the public to celebrate and explore the natural history of Columbia Hills State Park during Columbia Hills Trail Daze on Saturday, May 2.
Activities begin at 10 a.m. on event day and take place at several locations:
Horsethief Lake, Pictograph Tours, 10 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Take a tour of the ancient pictographs and petroglyphs drawn and carved into the rocks by early Native Americans. Discover one of the best examples of a North American pictograph--the iconic “Tsagaglalal” (She Who Watches). Space is limited, so visitors are encouraged to reserve early by calling (509) 439-9032.
Horsethief Butte, Roving Ice Age Floods Interpretive Talk, 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Ryan Karlson, Interpretive Services program manager for Washington State Parks, will describe how the Columbia Gorge was scoured by 1,000-foot-deep floods, with the initial surge wall rushing through the gorge at speeds of 60 mph.
Dalles Mountain Ranch, WSU Native Plant Research and Hikes, 10:30 am. and 12:30 p.m. Join Professor Steve Van Vleet from Washington State University for a hike and discussion about his research permit using livestock to restore native plant populations at Dalles Mountain Ranch.
Dalles Mountain Ranch, Native Plant Hike, 10:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m. Botanists from the Washington Department of Natural Resources will serve as guides for some native plant exploration. The hike will start from the new trailhead, which is located just past the ranch building complex.
Dalles Mountain Ranch, Horseback Ride, 10 a.m. Join members of the Mount Adams Chapter of the Backcountry Horsemen of Washington at the ranch trail head for a ride on the new 6-mile trail system that connects Crawford Oaks and the ranch. Horse riders should assemble early (9 to 9:30 a.m.) to offload and saddle up. The trail is also open to mountain bikes.
Other activities Other event activities will take place at various park access points. These include a field lesson in stream health at Eightmile Creek and a solar telescope viewing of the sun led by staff from Goldendale Observatory State Park.
For more information about these events, contact park staff at Columbia.Hills@parks.wa.gov, area office at (509) 773-3145 (Goldendale area office) or (509) 767-1159 (park office).
All Trail Daze programs are free. A Discover Pass is required for day use visits to Washington’s state parks. For those who don’t have an annual pass, day use permits will be available for purchase at the various park access points. For more information about the Discover Pass, visit www.discoverpass.wa.gov.
For more information about Columbia Hills State Park visit: http://www.parks.wa.gov/489/Columbia-Hills
About Washington State ParksThe Washington State Parks and Recreation Commission manages more than 100 state parks and properties totaling approximately 120,000 acres. The Commission provides a variety of recreation opportunities for citizens and provides stewardship protection for a diverse array of natural, cultural and historic resources. State Parks’ statewide programs include long-distance trails, boating safety and winter recreation.
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Support state parks by purchasing your annual Discover Pass today, and enjoy a whole year of outdoor fun on Washington’s beautiful state-managed recreation lands. For more information, visit www.discoverpass.wa.gov.
Media contacts: Toni Droscher, (360) 902-8604Andy Kallinen, (509) 767-1159Wash. Telecommunications Relay Service: (800) 833-6388