By Mathew Brock

Pilot Sports Writer

Tucked away in a turnout just before Winchuck River Bridge and across the river from Crissy Fields sits Winchuck State Recreation Site, a small park with direct access to the north bank of the Winchuck River.

The 6.8 acre Winchuck State Recreation site was purchased in 1964 as a potential beach access point and a portion of the acreage has since been used to help restore a 1.2 acre estuary at the mouth of the river.

This humble park provides little in the way of amenities aside from moderate parking space, but it serves as an ideal spot for a quick stroll across the bank of the river or a pitstop to get a breath of fresh air. The rough path from the boulder-lined parking area leads down to a stony riverbank where several large driftwood logs and rocks can be used to sit near the running water.

Several varieties of birds frequent the spot as the water ebbs and flows into a miniature cove and leaves debris washed there by the river and tide. Other wildlife can be seen on occasion, from squirrels and deer to marine life navigating up and down the river.

When water is sufficiently low, visitors can follow the bank up to the sandy, windswept beach north of the mouth of the river. The secluded beach serves as an ideal spot for fishing and clamming as it leads up to the long, vacant stretch of beach between McVay Rock and Crissey Field.

While the area has been approved for swimming, visitors should exercise caution. The current is often strong with deep water near the river mouth and warning signs advise of rip tides and sneaker waves. Additionally, the water has to be regularly tested for dangerous bacteria, so be sure to check the latest posting.

Find more informaton about Winchuck State Recreation site at https://oregonstateparks.org/index.cfm?do=parkPage.dsp_parkPage&parkId=57parkPage&parkId=57.

Reach Mathew Brock at mbrock@currypilot.com

20450537