Oregon's Ancient Forests: A Hiking Guide


Hike in the Heart of Oregon

Dripping coastal forests of giant Douglas-firs, high desert groves of massive ponderosa pines, and lush mixed conifer forests surrounding jagged Cascade peaks--Oregon’s ancient forests are one of the region’s most precious treasures, providing not only vital habitat for fish and wildlife but also some of the most amazing hiking experiences in the state. Author Chandra LeGue, Oregon Wild’s Western Oregon Field Coordinator, wants you to know and love these incredible places and guides you to them with 91 awe-inspiring hikes that reveal the very soul of Oregon. 

This comprehensive guide explains what makes ancient forests so unique as well as what types exist in Oregon, where they are, who manages them, why so few still survive, and what threats they continue to face. Covering natural history, human history, flora, and fauna, Oregon’s Ancient Forests offers a depth of information that will help you understand these complex ecosystems and their extraordinary value. Devote your next day outdoors to exploring some of these wonders, and get inspired to find out what you can do to protect them!

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Praise for the book: 

“‘Oregon's Ancient Forests: A Hiking Guide’ by Chandra LeGue is a guidebook with a purpose: to inspire readers to learn about and visit Oregon's rapturous old-growth forests, and then love them enough to keep them protected…. Unreservedly recommended.” John Taylor, Midwest Book Review

"Chandra LeGue has met the towering challenge of selecting Oregon's finest ancient forests, guiding us to them, and convincing us that their protection deserves whatever it takes. This book is an honor to our greatest trees and to the work of beloved naturalist Wendell Wood, whose steps Chandra followed for the definitive guide to old-growth in our state."  -Tim Palmer, author of Trees and Forests of America and Field Guide to Oregon Rivers

"You will find yourself picking this book up time and again, and planning trips to the far corners of Oregon." -Jared Kennedy, Outdoor Project

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Features include:

  • Full-color maps and photos
  • Trailhead GPS coordinates and driving directions
  • Trail distance, elevation gain, difficulty rating, and best season to visit
  • Type and protection status of each forest
  • At-a-glance guide for easy hike selection
  • Details on permits and fees

    Follow Chandra and Oregon's Ancient Forests

    On ​Facebook @ORancientforests and Instagram @oregon_ancient_forests

    Chandra's Blog

    Blog Post #1: Following the Trail Before Me

    Blog Post #2: Adventure Awaits in our Ancient Forests

    Blog Post #3: Changing Forests, Many Trails

    Blog Post #4: September in our Ancient Forests

    Blog Post #5: Forecast: Winter and Back to Work

    Blog Post #6: A Tale of Two Ancient Forests

    Blog Post #7: Women in the Woods

    Blog Post #8: Hopes and fears for Oregon's Ancient Forests


    Background and history

    In 1991, Oregon Wild (then Oregon Natural Resources Council or ONRC) published a book by one of its longest-serving staff members, Wendell Wood: "A Walking Guide to Oregon's Ancient Forests." Now, over 25 years later and two years after Wendell's untimely death, another Oregon Wild staffer, Chandra LeGue, is working to update and republish this "hiking guide that gives a damn." The new edition, called "Oregon's Ancient Forests: A Hiking Guide" includes nearly a hundred hike descriptions to help forest lovers explore some of Oregon's last remaining ancient forests, while giving readers the context and appreciation they need to be advocates for our forest ecosystems in a political climate that often puts industry profits ahead of public values.