Just over the dike, across the river, and… well, that’s it, actually. Over the dike and across the river and you’re there.
Thousand Acres is (I almost blurted out “a huge gift in my life”, but then that sounded hokey, so I didn’t) literally that. A huge expanse of trails through fields and wooded areas and down to the Sandy River and (at least until the river comes back up) one path few people find down to the Columbia.
You will find it on the internet at times as “Thousand Acres Dog Park”. That’s a misleading designation – there’s nothing “dog park”-ish about it. Yes, your dogs can run off leash with you on your walks on all but one trail, but there are no fences with sixteen dogs cavorting while their humans sit on benches, and there are plenty of dogless people hiking and bird-watching.
The Forest Service runs the park and has done a great job this summer of improving the parking lot and trails. It’s a lovely place and I encourage you, dog(s) or no, to take an hour or four and go explore.
Around the horseshoe, get on I-84 eastbound and RIGHT back off on the other side of the bridge at exit 18.
Follow the bend around to the Historic Scenic Highway, and turn right.
Follow the road through the underpass (one way right now! – note the light), and when you come out of the curve, you’ll be pointed straight at Thousand Acres through the gate ahead of you.
See you there~