From downtown Corvallis, follow US Hwy 20/ Hwy 34 west for 0.7 mile. Turn left onto SW Brooklane Drive (across from SW 26th Street). Follow SW Brooklane Drive south for 1.0 mile and then turn left onto a gravel road to a small gravel parking lot. The boardwalk begins here.Directions
Habitat and Birds
The Marys River Natural Area is a 74 acre parcel managed by the City of Corvallis. It preserves a riparian wetland floodplain along the Marys River. In 2004, the City constructed a boardwalk to provide public access to the site, which includes a swimming hole at the end of the boardwalk. But in January 2012, the river flooded the area, destroying the walk. With a FEMA grant and private donations, the City, along with multiple partners, redesigned and reconstructed a new 0.4 mile boardwalk which was dedicated in 2017. The area includes a kiosk and interpretive signs, and the boardwalk is wheelchair accessible. The new walk will provide access even through periods of high water.
Common year-round species include Northern Flicker, California Scrub-jay, Black-capped Chickadee, Bewick’s Wren, House Finch, Dark-eyed Junco, Spotted Towhee, and Song Sparrow. In the colder months, expect Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Golden-crowned Sparrow, Lincoln’s Sparrow, and Yellow-rumped Warbler. Black Phoebe has been reported early in the year. Regular summer residents include Western Wood-pewee, Tree, Violet-green, and Barn Swallow, Western Bluebird, Swainson’s Thrush, Cedar Waxwing, Purple Finch, Lesser and American Goldfinch, White-crowned Sparrow, and Common Yellowthroat. Red-tailed Hawk and American Kestrel are regularly seen.