A perspective from Oregon’s mid-Willamette Valley

A growing ‘attraction’ on the Clark Path

Written September 17th, 2022 by Hasso Hering

Taking a look under the Albany railroad bridge on the Willamette River on Sept. 13, 2022.

Is there anything special about the view above? Nope, not really. Except that the pile of driftwood jammed up against the pier is bigger than it was.

This logjam is one of the visual attractions on the Dave Clark Park. (There are not that many.) But you have to get off the paved path at least a little to get a clear view.

The last time this riverside phenomenon was featured here was in March 2021. At the time it reminded me of a similar jam about 10 years ago on the bridge’s center pier, the one that carried the rotating mechanism of the bridge back in the day.

(“Back in the day” means 1921, when the bridge was built.)

That jam in 2012 caused some concern, and eventually the Portland & Western Railroad paid to have it taken apart and sent downriver with the water’s flow.

This pile now is not causing anyone to lose any sleep, or so it would appear. So we users of the Clark Path can keep admiring it as it grows — and even sprouts tufts of grass, as it’s doing now.

This coming winter, more dead trees and woody debris will come down the river, and some of that stuff will get stuck at this spot. Wonder how big a thing like that can get? (hh)

The riverbank may be be “closed to public use,” but the sign is often ignored.

5 responses to “A growing ‘attraction’ on the Clark Path”

  1. Hartman says:

    Hasso, your photograph clearly points to the State’s mismanagement of valuable timber resources. All that wood butting up against bridge pilings could have – and should have – been available for harvesting, yet your lens proved that not to be.

    Perhaps the Linn County Commissioners should sue the state for failure to keep Oregon’s waterways fully open, and for lost timber revenues as the wooden berm piles up. The Commissioners, who imagine themselves too smart by half, managed to waste untold thousands in legal and other expenses in their misguided and failed attempt to put the County thumb in the State’s eye regarding timber management … an expensive failure that citizens of Linn County are now being forced to pay for. Kudos to Linn Commissioners for your mismanagement and poor judgment. It was almost like they were pandering to a certain influential element.

    Don’t let that good river timber go to waste. Sue the State immediately. Keep our Commissioners busy at doing what they do best – filing pointless, losing lawsuits that serve only to drive-up costs for us all.

    • MarK says:

      Looking at the pictures, I don’t see any “timber”. Looks like nothing but broken limbs and such. Nothing that could be used for anything other than kindling (if it was dry). Of course it needs to be cleared, but don’t try to make it what it’s not.

      • Hasso Hering says:

        It’s not always easy to tell, but Hartman often tries parody and wild exaggeration. Whatever he writes, keep the salt shaker handy because you’ll need more than just a grain or two.

  2. Rdjourney says:

    The Clark path needs more doggy poop bags stations. I walk my service dog there every day Monday through Friday and the sections leading to Monteith Park people do not pick up after their dogs. I pack bags with me but cannot afford to pick up after all the Irresponsible dog walkers.


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