Runners run a race on the Britt Woods Loop

Best Trail Runs Near Medford: Britt Woods Loop

Photo: Jacksonville Woodlands Association

Tackle a forested, rolling 6-miler just 12 minutes from downtown Medford.

It’s no secret that southern Oregon is a trail runner’s paradise. With plentiful singletrack, rolling hills, and huge swaths of serene pine forest, the region offers nearly limitless route options. Better yet? Some of the area’s best local trails lie within a 15-minute drive of Medford. 

For a local standby, check out this 5.8-mile loop, which winds through the lovingly maintained Britt Woods, a neighborhood woodland that hosts everything from 10K races to summer concerts. The loop will take you through rolling oak and pine forest, around 1860s-era gold mining sites, and past Oregon’s oldest giant sequoia. Here’s everything you need to know to pull it off. 

About Britt Woods

Britt Woods was named for Peter Britt, the Oregon pioneer who once owned this 80-acre estate before it was sold to the City of Jacksonville as a public resource in the early ’90s. (Of course, before European pioneers took over, the land was inhabited by a number of Native tribes, and the Modoc, Shasta, Siletz, and other peoples still consider it part of their ancestral homeland.) 

Today, Britt Woods is a neighborhood treasure frequented by hikers, dog walkers, and trail runners alike. The forest is also the setting for the annual Britt Woods Firehouse Run, a fun 4.3-mile trail race (and 10K invitational) that’s become something of a local classic. It’s also home to the Britt Pavilion, which hosts a popular outdoor concert series each summer. 

The Route 

This loop tackles about 5.8 miles and 1,400 feet of elevation gain, making it ideal for intermediate trail runners. Over that distance, the route encircles the entirety of Britt Woods, tracing the perimeter in a counter-clockwise direction from the parking area off Fir Street. 

If you’re already familiar with Jacksonville’s trail system, suffice it to say you’ll hit all the highlights: This route connects the Sarah Zigler, Jackson Forks, Jane Naverson, South Fork, Petard Ditch, Liz’s, White Oak, Rich Gulch, Oregon, and Panorama Point Trails. 

If you’re not familiar with the trail system, have no fear. Route finding is relatively simple. After you leave the parking lot, you’ll take nearly all right turns to stay on-trail. (Only avoid your first right, which leads to the highway, and the right onto the Chinese Diggings Trail at Mile 4.6.) Do this and you’ll not only avoid touching pavement for the loop’s entire 5.8 miles, but you’ll also get a full tour of Britt Woods in all its glory. 

Getting There 

Britt Woods is about 12 minutes from downtown Medford. To get there, take West Main Street west to state Route 238. When you get into downtown Jacksonville, take a right onto East California Street, then a left onto South Oregon three blocks later. After that, it’s a quick right onto Fir Street which will lead you straight to the Britt Woods parking area

Refresh & Refuel

After your run, head to the GoodBean café in downtown Jacksonville for biscuits and gravy, scrambled eggs, and French toast. Coffee connoisseurs should also check out Cerberus, which brews locally roasted, small-batch coffee and makes some of the best espresso in the valley. 

All articles are for general informational purposes.  Each individual’s needs, preferences, goals and abilities may vary.  Be sure to obtain all appropriate training, expert supervision and/or medical advice before engaging in strenuous or potentially hazardous activity.