As a donation born from an act of tax avoidance and an argument between Portland's affluent, Macleay Park's history is in sordid contrast to the beauty of the land itself. With trails widened to allow wheelchair access alongside the west hills' scenic vistas, Macleay Park has become a gem of the city's park and recreation areas.
Donald Macleay spent the last years of the 19th century making his name as a real estate mogul and merchant, having come to the Pacific Northwest from Scotland. In 1897, citing the commemoration of Queen Victoria's 60th year on the throne, Macleay donated the park grounds from his significant holdings. However, Macleay's gift was not entirely borne of his charity and patriotism. In an argument with Portland's Deputy Assessor over the amount of taxes he paid for his land, Macleay complained that it would be cheaper to donate the land. When the indifferent assessor challenged Macleay to follow through, the Scotsman returned three days later with the deed to the gnarled tract that would become Macleay Park.
The heavily timbered gulch has since been improved with wider trails and restrooms that accommodate wheelchairs. Macleay Park offers nature areas that focus on the evergreen forest and the creeks that cut through the land, making it a great destination for those looking to see the handsome Oregon wilderness at its most rugged. The park is bordered to the east by the Sylvan Highlands and to the south by Adams Park which leads to the Pittock Mansion. Positioned in the west hills, Macleay Park is located in arguably one of the most beautiful in Portland.
- 5am to 10pm daily
- Northwest 29th Avenue & Upshur Street, Portland, OR