Located in the center of Oregon’s beautiful Willamette Valley, Brownsville is the perfect place to get out and explore.
Camping & Picnicking
Stop and stay awhile when you come to Brownsville; you can camp or stop for a picnic right here in town.
- Nestled into a bend in the Calapooia River, Pioneer Park is a 26-acre gem within the Brownsville city limits. Tent and RV camping is available, as well as picnicking, swimming, sports fields and playgrounds.
- Linn County maintains dozens of county parks full of camping and picnicking spots scattered around the area surrounding Brownsville.
Surrounded by quiet country roads, the Brownsville area is perfect for exploring via bicycle.
- The Willamette Valley Scenic Bikeway, the nation’s first official bicycle route, run right through historic downtown Brownsville. (Bikeway info and route maps and Facebook page)
- The Mid-Valley Bicycle and Pedestrian Map is a wonderful online resource with maps of dozens of mid-valley cycling routes.
- The Santiam Spokes Bicycle Club has cycling events, classes for beginning cyclists, and weekly rides.
The Calapooia River flows right through Brownsville, and the Willamette and South Santiam rivers are just a few miles away, giving visitors plenty of opportunities to get out on the water.
- For a refreshing dip in on a hot day, try swimming at Pioneer Park in Brownsville or McKercher Park a few miles east of town.
- Guided tours of the Willamette River on an exciting jet boat are available from Scenic Jet Boat Tours, just a few miles southwest of Brownsville in Harrisburg.
- If you like canoeing or kayaking, try the Willamette River — it’s an official National Water Trail, and Canoeroots Magazine named it one of their canoe trips of a lifetime.
- For fishing, you can find steelhead, trout, bass and more in the rivers and creeks around Brownsville. The Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife posts regular updates about area fishing.
If you enjoy wakeboarding, water skiing, jet skiiing or sailing, the mid-Willamette Valley is a great place to explore.
- Foster Reservoir, located an easy 20 minute drive from Brownsville, is a destination for water sports enthusiasts, with several boat ramps, an RV resort/marina, a day use area, and a campground on the lake shore. If you don’t have a boat of your own, you can rent one at Edgewater Resort & Marina.
- Green Peter Reservoir, just a few miles east of Foster, is an even larger man-made lake, with camping, boating and fishing available.
- If you like watching boats maneuver through thrilling high-speed twists and turns, go see a race at the Oregon Jet Sprint Track a few miles northeast of Brownsville.
Wildlife & Birding
Discover the natural wonders just outside the door when you visit Brownsville and the Willamette Valley.
- Brownsville is a stop on the Santiam Loop of the Willamette Valley Birding Trail. See the Oregon state bird, the Western Meadowlark, as Bald Eagles and Oregon Vesper Sparrows.
- See herds of Roosevelt elk, river otter, beaver and many species of birds when you visit the William L. Finley National Wildlife Refuge.
Hike through lush forests and along beautiful trails when you visit the Brownsville area.
- Explore dozens of hikes in scenic Linn County on the Trails to Linn website.
- McDowell Creek Falls is a gorgeous hike that takes you past two waterfalls, Majestic Falls and Royal Terrace.
- Cheadle Lake and other trails in the nearby community of Lebanon are easy and flat with nice wildlife views.
- Talking Water Gardens in Albany takes you through manmade wetlands full of wildlife, and other trails in Albany include pathways on both the north and south shores of the Willamette River.
Shooting & Archery
Shooting and archery enthusiasts can enjoy several locations in the Brownsville area.
- The Albany Rifle and Pistol Club, about 10 minutes from Brownsville, has seven covered shooting bays for shotguns and pistols, as well as other amenities.
- The Oregon Old West Shooting Society is Oregon’s original cowboy action shooting club.
- The Archery Park at E.E. Wilson Wildlife Refuge northwest of Brownsville is free and open to the public.
Brownsville is a wonderful place to explore on a scenic drive, whether you’re in a car, motorcycle or RV.
- The Over the Rivers and Through the Woods Scenic Byway runs right through Brownsville.
- Take a driving tour of the nine historic covered bridges on the rural back roads of Linn County.