Ambitious runners and hikers will be out in full force Saturday for the annual South Clatsop Slough Scramble.
The event, hosted by Lewis and Clark National Historical Park, coincides with National Public Lands Day and Hometown Tourism Day, and admission is free at the park as well as dozens of museums and parks in Pacific County and Clatsop County.
The race, sponsored by the Lewis and Clark National Park Association, sends runners and walkers on a loop of their choosing past the Netul River and along South Clatsop Slough on elevated terrain. Participants are able to register for a 3- or 5.5-mile loop and see views of Saddle Mountain and park wetlands.
Jill Harding, chief of visitor services, said the idea for the event came after developing the South Clatsop Slough Trail. Compared to the Fort to Sea Trail, it goes up and down and so it became the scramble, she said.
Harding said the park tends to see the race as an opportunity for runners to warm up for the annual Columbia River Crossing. The scramble is held regardless of weather.
The race begins at the Netul Landing, where afterwards the park will have a grand reopening of the site between 11 a.m. and 2 p.m. The park has worked to create an interactive experience for children, with wooden creatures and objects to view. We hope to keep working on it, Harding said, to make it a real family friendly day use area.
Kayaks will be available for a guided paddle during the reopening as well.
Registration forms for the scramble are available online at www.nps.gov/lewi, or at the Visitor Center. Participants can register at the race start on the day of the scramble, from 9 to 9:45 a.m. The route is not accessible for a wheelchair or stroller. No pets will be allowed.
While there is no cost to participate, T-shirts are available for pre-order for $15 from the Lewis and Clark National Park Association, 503-861-4452 or fax: 503-861-4428.