Managed by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Bake Stewart Park is in a bit of a transformation process. The goal is to protect the natural resources, enhance recreation opportunities and reduce the costs of managing the park. The biggest change occurred in 2014 when it switched to a walk-in and bike-in only park. At that time the managers also adjusted their mowing schedule to allow for more of the native plants to grow.
The park contains upland prairie and oak habitats that are vital for wildflowers, native grasses and other species such as monarch butterflies. Because of the ongoing habitat restoration, it’s a great place to explore. The trails around the park allow hikers and bikers to take in the beauty of the different habitats around the Row River and Dorena reservoir. Information signs are located around the park at most trail junctions. If you want to explore more of the area, there’s a short trail (0.3 miles) that connects to the Row River National Recreation Trail, which is a 15 mile-long paved trail from Dorena to Cottage Grove.
Park amenities include a small parking area, vault toilets, picnic tables (some covered), hiking and biking trails, and fishing opportunities. Dogs must remain on leashes at all times. No alcohol is allowed in the park.