Deer Creek County Park

A 13-ac prairie restoration in this 30-ac park is one of the largest wet prairie remnants in the northern Willamette Valley. Visit May – June to see the peak bloom of native wildflowers (view from the edges of the restoration only). Any time of year is good for birding the accessible portion of the park, which includes riparian ash forest, a creek, and plenty of brush for sparrows. In winter look for Lincoln’s Sparrow and Sooty Fox Sparrow, and watch for White-tailed Kite and Northern Harrier hunting over the prairie. Spring and summer bring Green Heron, Willow and Pacific-slope Flycatchers, Marsh Wren, Swainson’s Thrush, and other riparian species. Conifers on the edges of the Gopher Valley are close enough that you may hear Northern Pygmy-Owl, Red Crossbill, and Evening Grosbeak.

From Hwy 18 between MP 34 and MP 35 (2 mi NE of Sheridan), turn N at the Dairy Queen onto Gopher Valley Rd. Follow Gopher Valley Rd for 5.5 mi and watch for green signs on the L for the park. Turn L onto a signed gravel road that leads 0.25 mi over a wood-plank bridge to the parking area. GPS 45 10 N, 123 23 W.