Attention, Willamette Valley riders! You have a new place to ride: the Upper Nestucca Trails near Carlton, Oregon.
New horse trails don’t come along every day, so it’s a pretty special thing when a new riding area opens up.
The West Valley chapter of Oregon Equestrian Trails has leased 120 acres of state land, built a new trailhead, and developed single-track trails that explore the nearby hills and connect with a huge network of forest roads and OHV trails on adjacent BLM land.
The terrain is hilly and the single-track is steep in a few short sections, but there are no steep side hills to worry about. The trails can be slick after a rain, so it’s best to ride here in summer and fall.
The trailhead parking area has a very detailed map, so take a photo of it with your phone for reference during your ride.
The equestrian trails are all color-coded and the roads and OHV trails are numbered, so if you have the map you’ll have no trouble finding your way around. Some of the OHV trails are not suitable for horses because there’s nowhere to get off the trail if you should meet an OHV, but these trails are clearly marked on the map.
So if you’re tired of riding at the same old places, give the Upper Nestucca Trails a try. You’ll be glad you did!
Ride Statistics: Many miles of trails and forest roads are available and the Upper Nestucca Trails offer lots of loop possibilities, so you can tailor your ride to suit the time you have available.
Getting to Upper Nestucca Trailhead: In Carlton, head north on Main Street, which soon becomes Meadow Lake Road. In 6.7 miles, veer left to stay on Meadow Lake Road. In another 9 miles, just past the 8.5 mile marker, turn left into the parking area. The Blue Trail departs from the south side of the parking area, and the Red Trail departs on forest road 3-6-16.2 just west of the trailhead parking area.
Season: Summer through fall
Trailhead Facilities: Parking for 4-6 trailers. No other facilities.