Mt. Hood and Columbia River Gorge Blog - Hiking

VISIT ESTACADA FOR THE FUNGUS, STAY FOR THE MURALS
10/30/2017 | Agritourism, Art, Estacada, Hiking, Mt Hood Territory, Wildlife
Calling all fun guys and fun gals, the annual Estacada Festival of Fungus is back! Join fellow mushroom enthusiasts on Saturday, November 4 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. at Estacada High School for a fungus filled day. In addition to the beautiful and educational displays of Pacific Northwest mushrooms, the event will feature vendors featuring fungus related items, a children’s area, an area for planning your future outings and fungi- and fermentation-related demonstrations. Bring in your own freshly foraged loot and get help identifying what they are with onsite mycologists. Guests can also enjoy an art show featuring local artists. And since you’re in Estacada, make sure to check out all the wonderful murals around downtown! The mural project began in 1994 and each...  Read More
FAVORITE GORGE TRAIL CLOSED? HERE ARE OUR FAVORITE ALTERNATIVE HIKING OPTIONS
09/21/2017 | Biking, Hiking, Recreation
Due to the ongoing fire and continuing containment efforts from the September 2017 Eagle Creek Fire, many areas of our favorite Columbia River Gorge trails remain closed to protect public safety. However, our region is full of other outdoor recreation options for visitors and our communities are open for business. Don't miss out on all that the Fall season has to offer in the Mt. Hood and Columbia River Gorge.  Here are some of our favorite recreational trails to consider while the recovery effort on the Eagle Creek Fire continues: Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area: (More information on fire closures and restrictions on the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area)Sandy River DeltaMt. Hood National Forest: (More information on Mt. Hood National Forest recreation opportunities)Highway...  Read More
READY, SET, GORGE!
06/15/2017 | Hiking, Hood River, Recreation, The Dalles, West Columbia River Gorge
Travel tips for the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic AreaThe magnificent Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area is a favorite among locals and Oregon visitors alike, and its no mystery as to why. Within these 293,000 acres, there are spectacular waterfalls, trails for all hiking levels, parks, historical sites, and the scenic Historic Columbia River Highway. Unlike most national parks and scenic areas, the Columbia Gorge is also home to 13 communities, all of which have unique characteristics that make them well worth visiting.More than 2 million people visit the Gorge each year, and many make Hood River their basecamp because of its easy access to dozens of hiking and biking trails and majestic drives and sightseeing. Hood River is...  Read More
A MOUNTAIN MAN'S BUCKET LIST
04/27/2017 | Hiking, Mt Hood Territory, Skiing, Waterfalls, West Columbia River Gorge
Some goals in life leave me restless until they are crossed off my bucket list, no matter how many attempts or years it takes me to accomplish it. Mt. Hood was one of those.Five years ago, while sitting at my computer in Utah looking through pictures of mountains to climb, I came across a photo of a rim-ice-encrusted rock monolith that pierced the sky like a giant dagger on a mountain side. That was when I discovered the formation called Illumination Rock, located on the escarpments of Mt. Hood, Oregons tallest mountain at 11,250 feet.Years passed, life got in the way, but Mt. Hood remained at the back of my mind.In 2016 my work as a photographer moved me to...  Read More
SAY HELLO TO SPRING IN HOOD RIVER
03/22/2017 | Agritourism, Brewery, Event, Hiking, Hood River, Recreation, Winery
 By spring, snow in the Hood River Valley melts away and its 14,000 acres of fruit trees burst with pink and white blossoms. During the month of April, also known as Blossom Time in Hood River, plan a multi-day stay in this beautiful agricultural town in the heart of the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area and immerse yourself in one of the states most beautiful springtime wonderlands!Here is what we suggest at the perfect springtime activity...Day 1 Hood River County Fruit LoopDrive or bike the Hood River County Fruit Loop, a gorgeous 35-mile self-guided tour route. You'll pass through pear, cherry and apple orchards bursting with pink and white flowers. Recommended stops include The Gorge White House, where you...  Read More
10 FUN THINGS TO DO IN MT. HOOD/GORGE THIS WINTER
01/18/2017 | Biking, Brewery, Cascade Locks, Dufur, Event, Government Camp, Hiking, Hood River, Lodging, Mt Hood Territory, Recreation, The Dalles, Troutdale, Waterfalls, West Columbia River Gorge
 Winter in the Mt. Hood/Columbia River Gorge region is meant for adventure and fun... with a side of cozy relaxation. Here are 10 fun suggestions for your winter trip planning in our backyard: Take in epic views of the Columbia River and sample seasonal brews at Thunder Island Brewing in Cascade Locks. See what snow-covered waterfalls look like in Waterfall Alley along I-84. However, roads and trails can be icy and dicey in winter. Check conditions in advance and come prepared with adequate apparel, snow and ice gear. We recommend sticking to the easy access falls in winter like Multnomah Falls, Horsetail Falls, and Latourell Falls. Learn about the history and culture of the Gorge at one of the upcoming...  Read More
WINTER AT MULTNOMAH FALLS LODGE
12/29/2016 | Corbett, Hiking, Waterfalls, West Columbia River Gorge
Twinkling lights and family getaways are just a few of the wonderful traditions that families share over the holiday season. Make sure to include a stop at the historic Multnomah Falls Lodge on your next trip to the West Columbia Gorge for a warm meal and spectacular winter wonderland waterfall views.Each winter the lodge shines bright with holiday lights and warms bellies with an upscale Northwest style cuisine at the restaurant. While there, don't miss the breathtaking view of glowing snow and ice surrounding the second highest year-round waterfall in our nation, Multnomah Falls.So, take a drive with your friends, family, and loved ones to the Multnomah Falls Lodge this winter and include it as one of your annual holiday...  Read More
HEAD TO HOOD RIVER FOR A POST-ELECTION DETOX
10/24/2016 | Biking, Brewery, Food, Hiking, Hood River, Recreation
Is the American election season stressing you out We have the perfect antidote. Spend time in nature which has been proven to reduce blood pressure, heart rate, muscle tension and the production of stress hormones.Beautiful Hood River located near Oregons highest peak, Mt. Hood, and within the lush waterfall corridor of the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area has an abundance of ways for nature to provide a much-needed post-election detox. Here are some of our suggestions:Unwind next to a waterfall. The Columbia River Gorge has the highest concentration of waterfalls in North America, and near Hood River you will find many trails leading to them, including Wahclella Falls, Dry Creek Falls, Tamanawas Falls, or the new Punchbowl Falls...  Read More
LABOR DAY CAMPING
09/01/2016 | Biking, Camping, Government Camp, Hiking, Mt Hood Territory, Recreation
Labor Day weekend is a great time to go camping! This weekend, visit Mt Hood at Still Creek Campground near Government Camp, for fun play and relaxation surrounded my nature! The campground features activities like hiking, fishing and mountain trails around it, so there are plenty of things to do!Still Creek Campground lies in the shadows of majestic Mt. Hood, in Oregon's Mt. Hood National Forest. It is one of the closest campgrounds to the mountain, and offers access to a variety of recreational opportunities. The surrounding area contains hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding trails, as well as numerous mountain lakes, rivers and creeks. Located in a meadow area of the forest. In the summer, visitors enjoy hiking and...  Read More
EXPLORE THE GORGE
09/01/2016 | Hiking, Recreation, Road Trip, Waterfalls, West Columbia River Gorge
Celebrate Labor Day this weekend by exploring the West Columbia River Gorge region! Camping and climbing and waterfalls, there are no shortages of things to do in this beautiful area! Whether you are bringing the whole family or a smaller group of friends, there is sure to be something fun for you in the West Columbia River Gorge. Here are a few ideas to get you started!What are the major destinations in the West Columbia River Gorge Historic Columbia River Hwy Travel to magnificent overlooks that provide views of the Columbia River and waterfalls, including Multnomah Falls.Vista House Few places combine natures wonders and human architectural brilliance so majestically. Once called Thors Heights, Crown Point is capped...  Read More
SALMON BUTTE
08/29/2016 | Hiking, Mt Hood Territory, Recreation, Villages of Mt. Hood, Welches
Salmon Butte Trail is a great hike for those looking for a little more of a challenge but a great reward. Beautiful, forested scenery all the way up the trail, and a view of several mountains along the Cascade range at the top. Come on down to Mt Hood by Welches and see this beautiful 11.8-mile hike! The Salmon Butte Trailhead sign is nailed to a tree above a wide trail. Do NOT take this trail: it leads to campsites and the river, which is where most of the occupants of the vehicles at the trailhead are ensconced. Instead, take the road bed up past the boulders blocking it. Youll pass above campsites above the Salmon River, always busy on...  Read More
LATOURELL FALLS
08/26/2016 | Corbett, Hiking, Recreation, Waterfalls, West Columbia River Gorge
Just past Vista House along the old Historic Columbia River Highway, you can get to this family friendly hike to view the beautiful Latourell Falls. Only 2.4 miles round trip, this is a great stop if you are traveling along the Historic Highway in the Columbia River Gorge to view one of the many beautiful waterfalls this area is known for! Trail DescriptionBeginning from the trailhead from the Historic Columbia River Highway (HCRH), follow the trail uphill to the left of Latourell Falls (or sometimes referred to as the lower falls). At the falls, the lichen-covered columnar basalt formations around the falls steal the show. Continue to the Upper Falls after crossing several bridges and following Henderson Creek. Finally you'll...  Read More
MOSIER HIKE
08/23/2016 | Hiking, Hood River, Recreation, Waterfalls
Come on up to Mosier OR, just past Hood River, to climb and see Mosier Falls and the plateau above! This 3.5-mile loop is a great idea for a day trip with the family with beautiful views of the Columbia River Gorge. enjoy the wildflowers and bird watching sights along the trail.Trail Highlights:Best time to hike is March through May, with the peak of the wildflowers being mid-to-late April. (Over 30 different flower species have been counted!)Best time to swim in Mosier Creek (local swimming hole) is July and August, when the water is the warmest.Best time for solitude is a full moon evening hike or a hazy day hike at dusk in the late summer or early fall.Best time...  Read More
MILO MCIVER STATE PARK
08/15/2016 | Biking, Camping, Hiking, Mt Hood Territory, Rafting, Recreation
Milo McIver State Park is a great spot outside of Estacada for all your outdoor adventures! From horseback riding and fishing to camping and hiking, even guided kayaking tours, whatever you what to do in the great outdoors this park as you covered! This small State Park is one of the many benefits of living in the Mt Hood-Columbia River Goge area; There is always something to do. Situated along the scenic Clackamas River, Milo McIver State Park is only 45 minutes from Portland. This beautiful park provides a variety of outstanding recreational opportunities.Within this little-known gem, you can spend a day or a week exploring the river, forest and fields. River-lovers can challenge the sometimes wild (but always picturesque)...  Read More
MIRROR LAKE
08/09/2016 | Camping, Hiking, Mt Hood Territory, Mt. Hood, Recreation
Mirror lake on Mt Hood is a great place to view the majestic mountain against the clear waters of the lake, this almost 3-mile hike is easily accessible from Highway 26. This family-friendly hike is also a great backpacking opportunity and campgrounds are available at the lake. Whether you are looking for a day trip or a weekend getaway, Mirror Lake is a great opportunity. From the trailhead parking area, cross rushing Camp Creek and immediately enter deep forest, crossing Mirror Creek on a second log bridge. The trail soon enters more open woods, then begins a series of switchbacks across open scree slopes that provide interesting views of the Zigzag Valley, far below. If youre taking children on this...  Read More
BEAUTIFUL MULTNOMAH
08/05/2016 | Hiking, Recreation, Troutdale, Waterfalls, West Columbia River Gorge
Come see the view from the top of the mighty Multnomah Falls! This 2.6-mile hike takes you up switchbacks that give you beautiful views of the Columbia River Gorge all the way up to the 620 ft drop that is the beautiful Multnomah Falls! This waterfall is steeped in history as it is the crown jewel along the Columbia River Highway.HistoryLumber baron and philanthropist Simon Benson donated the land that the falls sit upon and funded the construction of the iconic Benson Bridge in front of Multnomah Falls, the tallest waterfall in Oregon and the Columbia Gorge's most recognizable natural landmark. Benson's generosity later helped citizens work with timber companies in the 1940s and 1950s to secure protection of...  Read More
DRY CREEK FALLS
08/01/2016 | Cascade Locks, Hiking, Hood River, Recreation, Waterfalls
If you are looking for something to do this summer, The Columbia River Gorge is chock full of beautiful hikes brimming with waterfalls. One of them, Dry Creek Falls, is a great easy hike. 4.5 miles and featuring beautiful Dry Creek Falls, you do need a NW Forest Path to get to it, but it's worth every step.An out and back hike along the Pacific Crest Trail (PCT) that begins in Cascade Locks and meanders through beautiful forest to Herman Creek. Dry Creek Falls is a beautiful waterfall that often gets overlooked by hikers. The trail is straight forward, although finding the trailhead from the parking area can be tricky. To access the trailhead, cross the road that leads to...  Read More
RIVERFRONT TRAIL
07/08/2016 | Hiking, Recreation, The Dalles
If you are looking for a nice scenic riverfront hike then look no further. The Dalles Riverfront trail offers a family friendly stroll along the beautiful Columbia River, with beautiful views of the surrounding hills and landscapes.Trail Details Type: Out and back Distance: 3 miles round trip Elevation Gain: 200 feet Difficulty: Easy Family Friendly Family Friendly: Yes Restrooms Restrooms: Yes Trailhead Pass Trailhead Pass: NoTrail Description This easy trail starts at the Discovery Center in The Dalles and meanders along the Columbia River. The area has plenty of wildlife viewing opportunities.Learn more about this hike and where it starts at: gorgefriends.org/hike-the-gorge/the-dalles-riverfront-trail.htmlDiscover more attractions, events and activities you wont want to miss-out on while visiting The Dalles. Dont forget to...  Read More
MCCORD CREEK FALLS
06/22/2016 | Hiking, Recreation, Waterfalls, West Columbia River Gorge
Upper McCord Creek Falls is a beautiful double waterfall well worth the hike. Featuring beautiful views of The Gorge and Mt Adams, this family friendly hike is a great idea for a day trip in The Gorge.This hike begins at the same location as the Nesmith Point and Elowah hikes. Follow trail #400 along an abandoned road and up a steep incline, where you will come across a junction. Bear right and follow the trail uphill toward McCord Creek Falls. After a few switchbacks, the view will open up to great vistas of the Gorge and Mt. Adams. The trail is cut into the wall and has railings for safety. You will see Elowah Falls from the top, just before...  Read More
DRIVE THROUGH HISTORY
06/22/2016 | Biking, Event, Hiking, Mosier, Recreation, The Dalles, Troutdale, Waterfalls, West Columbia River Gorge
The Historic Colombia River Highway is turning 100 this year and it is a great way to view the majestic and breath taking beauty of the Gorge carved by floods thousands of years ago, as well as the peaceful greenery you will travel through. If you are looking for a place to take a road trip, this is a must. Basalt cliffs, river fronts, waterfalls, and hikes galore, and not to mention the beautiful Vista House. Connecting Troutdale to The Dalles, The Columbia River Historic Highway is a must to see.Troutdale and the Sandy:To begin your journey from Portland, take Interstate 84 east to exit 17. Follow the signs through the quaint town of Troutdale, where you can visit...  Read More
TAMANAWAS FALLS
06/22/2016 | Government Camp, Hiking, Mt Hood Territory, Recreation, Waterfalls
Come enjoy the beautiful views of hiking Mt Hood, and climb the trail leading to Tamanawas Falls. Cross log bridges, follow creeks and enjoy the beautiful forestry surrounding the mountain. There are basically two approaches to Tamanawas Falls. This hike begins at the Tamanawas Falls Trail head along highway 35. After crossing the East Fork of the Hood River, turn right on Trail #650 and follow the river for about a half mile. Then the trail takes a sharp left turn on the point of a cliff with a great view and heads into the Cold Spring Creek Canyon. Soon you intersect Trail #650A which is directly ahead of you as Trail #650 makes a sharp right and continues on...  Read More
ELOWAH FALLS
06/22/2016 | Hiking, Recreation, Waterfalls, West Columbia River Gorge
A quick hike with a big reward, the Elowah Falls trail is one of the best short day hikes in the Gorge. The 1.6 mile out-and-back hike drops you at the base of the Elowah Falls, an elegant, 200-foot falls that cascades over a cliff decorated with patches of yellow-green lichen. If you are looking to continue on your journey, take the nearby trail to Upper McCord Creek Falls to behold the remarkable double-falls.Ready to hike Follow these directions to reach the trail head:Elowah Falls Trailhead: Located near Warrendale in the Columbia River Gorge. Driving east from Portland along I-84, exit the freeway at the Dodson exit (also signed for the Scenic Highway). Just after exiting the freeway, turn...  Read More
RAMONA FALLS
06/20/2016 | Hiking, Mt Hood Territory, Recreation, Waterfalls
Over 70 ethereal waterfalls flow down the Columbia River Gorge and Mt. Hood National Forest. Ramona Falls is a jewel among them. This 7 mile loop trail to the waterfall crosses the Wild and Scenic glacial-fed Sandy River, passing by centuries old lava flow that has been carved out by water. Start at the Ramona Falls trailhead, about 6 miles off of Hwy 26. Need a post hike snack? Check out Wraptitude or the Skyway Bar and Grill located in the Mt. Hood Villages. ** This is a great waterfall hike alternative to the closed trails in the Columbia River Gorge that are currently closed due to the Eagle Creek Fire.   Read More
WEST COLUMBIA RIVER GORGE
WATERFALLS
One of the most iconic places in the Pacific North West, the Columbia River Gorge offers unparalleled waterfall scenery and canyon views. Visit the West Columbia Gorge area to stand at the base of waterfalls, boat on the mighty Columbia River, or to stand atop vistas and take in the view. READ MORE
THE DALLES
SUNSHINE
Boasting 300 days of sunshine a year, The Dalles is a place full of recreation, culture, and history. A historic Native American trading area, this city has been a center of commerce for over 10,000 years. A paradise for history buffs, cyclists, and wine aficionados, The Dalles is for all to enjoy. READ MORE
MT. HOOD TERRITORY
EXPLORATION
The only mountain offering summer skiing in North America, Mt. Hood and the surrounding territory never gets old. If you’re not a skier, put on your hiking boots, grab a fishing pole, or load up your kayak to explore the trails, lakes, and rivers, found throughout the area. READ MORE
HOOD RIVER
WATERSPORTS
Offering world-class kiteboarding and windsurfing, Hood River is where outdoor enthusiasts and adventure-seekers are drawn to. Close to the mountain, along the river, and nestled against superb farmland, visit this town for amazing restaurants, fresh produce, and an unrivaled watersport scene. READ MORE
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