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Date:  August 27, 2002

Location  Berry Extravaganza

Where:  Sweet Home District, Willamette National Forest


Alice Smith showing us Red Elderberries

This was a trip put together by Alice Smith botanist, Sweet Home Ranger District to introduce people to a wide variety of wild berries available in the Cascades. We assembled at the Sweet Home Ranger Station and then drove to the Tombstone Pass parking lot. By hiking a short distance down Forest Service Road #15, Alice was able to point out a large number of edible wild berries including, Thimble, Salmon, Red Elder, Stinking Currant, Black Gooseberry, Sticky Currant, a couple of different huckleberries as well as the very poisonous Baneberry.

Alice explaining the differences in some huckleberries

We next drove over to the Lava Lake Road and drove into the Park Creek area. Stopping along the road Alice pointed out Dwarf Huckleberry, Western Tea-berry, Trailing Blackberry, and Mountain Ash. After lunch we moved down to the meadow area that Park Creek flows through and began berry picking in earnest instead of just sampling as we had done all morning, first Bog Huckleberry, then Oval-leaved Huckleberry, and finally I hunted down all the red variety of Black Huckleberries that I could find. Truly a berry extravaganza---now I am going to have to try talking our Web-master into making up a database for Wild Berries.

Picking Bog Blueberries with the Three Pyramids in the background