Renew with Nature: Hike the Table Rocks!
. – Renew your connection with nature with a series of free, guided educational hikes at Upper and Lower Table Rocks. Offered by The Nature Conservancy and Bureau of Land Management Medford District during April and May weekends, these hikes are led by specialists from around the region who will help you find, interpret and enjoy the parts of nature that are special to you.
There’s no better way to learn about the Table Rocks’ diverse flora and fauna and rich cultural and geologic history, or to express your love for nature through art and music.
Hikers will meet at the designated trailhead for the 2.5- to 3-mile roundtrip hike up to about 800 feet in elevation. The trails are a moderate grade. Participants should dress for the weather and terrain and bring water and snacks since hikes to the top may last 3 to 4 hours. Restrooms are available only at each trailhead; there is no drinking water available on site. Due to limited parking at the trailheads, carpooling is encouraged. To help protect this special place, dogs and vehicles are not allowed on the trail.
All hikes are free to the public but reservations are required as space is limited. Information about the hikes and online reservations are available at https://tinyurl.com/TableRocksHikes2023
. Registration for April hikes opens March 24; May hikes open for registration on April 17. For additional information, contact the BLM Medford District at 541.618.2200
, M-F, 8:00 a.m.- 4:30 p.m. or The Nature Conservancy at 541-708-4990
The Nature Conservancy and the Bureau of Land Management have protected and managed the Table Rocks for more than 40 years. These remnants of ancient lava flows host showy wildflower displays and a variety of habitats, providing a spectacular outdoor classroom that showcases our valley’s natural and cultural history. Join us as we renew with nature at the Table Rocks.
Sat., April 8, Upper Table Rock, 9:30 a.m.
Spring Blooms & Stories Abound
: Discover the colorful wildflowers that bring the Table Rocks to life each spring with Liz Landreth
, aka “The Flower Floozy” and Oregon Master Naturalist for the Cascade-Siskiyou region. Learn to identify some of the stunning spring wildflowers and hear some ethnobotanical and nature stories along the
trail. Limited to 15 individuals
Sat., April 15, Lower Table Rock, 10:00 a.m.
: Join Rich Fairbanks
, local oak fancier, Chris Adlam
, OSU Fire Ecologist and birder/botanist, and Molly Morison
, Preserves Manager with The Nature Conservancy and explore a remarkable diversity of oak habitats including savannas, woodlands and shrublands, and see examples of recent climate resilient restoration work. Oaks of all shapes and sizes are vital to the lives of wildlife, other plants, and people. These Klamath-Siskiyou Oak Network partners have found 100+ reasons to love oaks – learn why you should too!
Sun., April 16, Upper Table Rock, 9:00 a.m.
: Join Chamise Kramer
, Public Affairs Specialist for the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest, and BLM Environmental Education Specialist Molly Allen
on a general information hike suitable for the whole family. Topics will include wildflower identification, ethnobotany, geology, wildlife, ecology and cultural history of the Table Rocks.
Sat., April 22, Lower Table Rock, 8:00 a.m.
For the Early Birds
: Join other early birds to listen for and observe the birds of the Table Rocks with Bob Quaccia
of the Rogue Valley Audubon Society and Frank Lospalluto
from the Klamath Bird Observatory. Learn ID tips and conservation information while viewing the spring birds. Bring binoculars and ID books if you desire.
Sun., April 23, Lower Table Rock, 9:00 a.m.
Camp White: “The Alcatraz of Boot Camps”
: Travel back in time with BLM archaeologists Jennifer Sigler
(Butte Falls Field Office) and Lisa Rice
(Ashland Field Office) to the WWII era when Southern Oregon was a major training center for the U.S. military. Participants will be led on a guided exploration of the remains of the Camp White artillery range which includes pillboxes designed to practice infantry drills. Because there is no trail, wear sturdy shoes and long pants. Limited to 15 individuals.
Sun., April 30, Lower Table Rock, 9:00 a.m.
Walk on the Wild(flower) Side
: Join BLM botanist Thomas Hender
and discover the colorful wildflowers that bring the Table Rocks to life each spring. Learn to identify and enjoy the area’s beautiful native flora. Limited to 15 individuals
Sat., May 6, Lower Table Rock Loop Trail, 9:00 a.m.
Plein Air Paintout @ the Rocks
: Join Darlene Southworth
, botanist and artist, for an outdoor painting session along the Lower Table Rock Loop Trail. Bring your sketchpads, painting materials (any medium) and easel and chair, if you desire.
Sat., May 13, Upper Table Rock, 10:00 a.m.
Table Rocks Unplugged: Ukulele Jam Session on the Rocks!
: BYOU (bring your own ukulele) and join the hiking ukulele band under the direction of Tish McFadden
, founder and leader of the Southern Oregon Ukulele Players (SOUP), and local musician and recording artist Jeff Kloetzel
. A sing-along and play-along will be held at stops along the trail and at the top of Upper Table Rock. All skill levels and ages are invited to make music in nature.
Songbooks will be provided.
Sat., May 20, Upper Table Rock, 9:00 a.m.
Spring Bees & Botany
: The Table Rocks produce an array of flowers that host dozens of different bee species. During this family-friendly hike, you will meander through fields of flowers getting an up-close view of these bees and learn about conservation concerns and projects with local bee expert Sarah Red-Laird
, founder and director of BGO (Bee Girl Organization) and botanist Stacy Johnson
with the BLM Invasive Species Program.
Sat., May 20, Lower Table Rock Loop Trail, 7:30 p.m.
Whooo Comes Out at Night?
: Look and listen for who comes out at night while hiking the Lower Table Rock Loop Trail (1/2-mile accessible trail) with BLM wildlife biologists Steve Godwin
and Emma Busk
. No guarantees but they will attempt to lure pygmy, great horned, and screech owls as well as other creatures of the night. Learn fascinating information about bats and their importance as they fly overhead. Bring flashlights and wear good hiking shoes.
Sun., May 21, Lower Table Rock, 9:30 a.m.
Legacy of a Landmark: Jeff LaLande
, retired archaeologist and historian for the Rogue River-Siskiyou National Forest, will discuss the role of the Table Rocks in the culture of the Takelma Indians, as well as the history of the Table Rocks area during the “Rogue Indian Wars” of the 1850s and the years following Euro-American settlement.
Did you know? A few facts about the Table Rocks
▪ The 4,864 acres of the Table Rocks are jointly owned, managed and protected by The Nature Conservancy and the Bureau of Land Management.
▪ The Table Rocks are the ancestral homelands of the Takelma people who lived here since time immemorial. Their descendants, as members of the Confederated Tribes of Grand Ronde Community of Oregon, Confederated Tribes of Siletz Indians and Cow Creek Band of Umpqua Tribe of Indians, share stewardship of these traditional lands for past, present, and future generations.
▪ The Table Rocks are named for their location along the Rogue River: Upper Table Rock is upstream and Lower Table Rock is downstream.
▪ There is an inactive airstrip on Lower Table Rock that was built in 1948.
▪ More than 50,000 visitors annually hike the Table Rocks, making it one of the most popular hiking locations in Southern Oregon.
▪ The Table Rocks are home to more than 70 species of animals and 340 species of plants including 200 species of wildflowers.
▪ The vernal pools at the top of the Table Rocks are one of the few places that are home to a federally threatened species of fairy shrimp, Branchinecta lynchi.
The Nature Conservancy
is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 76 countries and territories—37 by direct conservation impact and 39 through partners—we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org
or follow @nature_press
manages more than 245 million acres of public land located primarily in 12 western states, including Alaska, on behalf of the American people. The BLM also administers 700 million acres of sub-surface mineral estate throughout the nation. Our mission is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of America’s public lands for the use and enjoyment of present and future generations.