The Creaky Knees Guide Oregon, like all of Seabury’s guides, is written in an entertaining, casual style that is like a friend talking to the reader, sharing stories and vital information. His tales from his own hiking experiences are often laugh-out-loud funny, but always with a point. He’ll tell you the sights and sounds to look out for to best enjoy the hike; with his detailed descriptions of the trails, signposts, and landmarks, you won’t have to worry about getting lost and missing the beautiful waterfall because you turned left instead of right at the junction with the spur trail. The hikes—eighty in all, including four urban trails—featuring all distances, hiking times, elevation gains, effort ratings, best seasons to hike, permit information, GPS trailhead coordinates, and topographic maps. In addition, hikes that allow—or are especially ideal for—children and dogs are identified.
And Seabury knows it’s no laughing matter to prepare thoroughly for even the most benign-seeming hike. In addition to The 10 Essentials that no hiker should be without, he describes weather and wildlife considerations that hikers should always be aware of (do you know the right thing to do if a mountain lion confronts you?). In his specific hike descriptions, if there’s a particularly hazardous or physically challenging section, he’ll tell you about it. These hikes are intended to be exhilarating and refreshing—not survivalist treks filled with surprises and danger. Seabury went out and risked his own limbs so you wouldn’t have to!
We haven’t even talked about the geography this new Creaky Knees book covers—the vast, fascinating state of Oregon, that’s what. Everything on the beautiful extended coast from Astoria to Whalehead Cove, the Columbia River Gorge, Mount Hood, Central Oregon, more remote corners of the state, and urban trails in Portland, Salem, Corvallis, and Eugene. Even the most ambitious creaky-kneed hiker will need years to try all these hikes!
I know I’m itching to try them myself. And thanks to Seabury Blair’s terrific new The Creaky Knees Guide Oregon, for once my brain is going to be as ready for these hikes as I think my legs are.