Beautiful walk by the water

Because of time constraints, I only hiked a little bit of the Columbia River Renaissance Trail, but it was enough to know what the entire trail was like. It is a smooth, paved trail that runs along the Vancouver waterfront from Esther Shore Park to Wintler Park. Right now, some construction prevents you from walking along the water all the way, but there are parallel trails that you can cut over to when you encounter roadblocks.

This trail features a series of signs, pointing out historical locations. It has beautiful views of bridges to Portland over the Columbia and Mt. Hood.

Columbia River Renaissance Trail

Esther Short Park, Vancouver, Washington

Difficulty: Easy peasy

Panting stops: 0

Distance: Five miles

Elevation changes: minimal

The cantilevered pier over the water

We started the trail not at one of the parks but in front if a small group of shops and the Twigs restaurant. Behind the restaurant is a cantilevered pier that hangs out above the water.

This trail features a paved path that is suitable for walking, running, biking, or rollerblading, and we saw many people with their dogs.

We also got some really nice views of Mt. Hood, although the pictures did not come out very well.

How to get there

From Portland, Oregon

Take I-5 North across the river and take Exit 1A WA 14 East toward Camas. Take exit 1 towards Fort Vancouver National Site. Keep right at the fork. Go straight onto Southeast Columbia Shores Boulevard. Turn right onto Southeast Spinaker Way. Turn right onto Southeast Cutter Lane. Turn into the park.

From Vancouver, WA

Going south on I-5, take Exit 1A WA 14 East toward Camas. Take exit 1 towards Fort Vancouver National Site. Keep right at the fork. Go straight onto Southeast Columbia Shores Boulevard. Turn right onto Southeast Spinaker Way. Turn right onto Southeast Cutter Lane. Turn into the park.

Going south on I-205, take the exit for WA14 West toward Downtown Vancouver. Exit to Southeast Columbia Way. Turn left onto Southeast Spinaker Way. Turn right onto Southeast Cutter Lane. Turn into the park.

Parking and Amenities

There is a large parking lot in the park. Other amenities are playscapes, boat launches, picnic areas, restrooms, and an amphitheatre, and there are shops and restaurants nearby .