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MT. HOOD AND
THE COLUMBIA RIVER GORGE

If you’re waiting for the right time of year to come to the Mt. Hood/Columbia Gorge region, we recommend heading here today. With year-round hiking, skiing, waterfall-chasing, beer-drinking, and adventuring, the Mt. Hood/Columbia Gorge region is always ready for you. Our weekly blog posts spread the word about trip ideas and events throughout the entire Mt. Hood/Columbia Gorge region.

Hood_Gorge_Regions_Mt_Hood_Territory_01MT. HOOD TERRITORY

Which cities are in our sub-region?  

Estacada

The town of Estacada rests on the banks of the Clackamas River, and serves as a gateway to many recreational opportunities – rafting, kayaking, camping, and fishing, to name a few.  The history of Estacada is illustrated in a series of murals in the downtown area.  Estacada also marks the beginning of the West Cascades Scenic Byway and Cascading Rivers Scenic Bikeway, which winds south through the mountains to Detroit and Oakridge.

Sandy

Sandy, the gateway to the Mt. Hood National Forest recreation area, takes its name from the nearby Sandy River.  Many visitors enjoy a stop here en route to the mountain to browse Sandy’s unique shops, art galleries, historical museums and scenic view of Mt. Hood at Jonsrud Viewpoint. The Sandy River offers excellent steelhead and salmon fishing and hiking and biking trails.  

Villages of Mt. Hood (Brightwood, Wemme, Welches, Zigzag, Rhododendron)

This is the outdoor enthusiast’s playground, with numerous vacation rentals, shopping and culinary delights. Surrounded by high mountain lakes, crisscrossed with rushing rivers and blanketed by thick fir forests, the Villages of Mt Hood serve as the commercial hub of the south side of Mt Hood.  Here you will find one of Oregon’s oldest and most memorable golf resorts – The Resort at the Mountain. The Villages offer a wide variety of accommodations, ranging from riverside log cabins to resort lodging, vacation condominiums, and quaint mountain bungalows nestled in the woods,.  From here you are never more than 20 miles away from year-round skiing, golfing, hiking or just relaxing next to the Salmon River.  Culinary possibilities abound in the villages; from coffee roasted on the spot to homemade soup and entrees featuring the local bounty.

Government Camp

The village of Government Camp has transformed itself into an attractive alpine mountain destination, serving as a recreational hub for visiting skiers, snowshoers, tubers, cross country skiers, snowboarders, hikers and mountain bikers.  The village is the point of departure for many trails, accessible through Mt. Hood Adventure guides.  A number of eateries and lodging options are here, including mountain resorts, vacation rental homes and inns.  The Mt. Hood Cultural Center & Museum showcases mountain art, the natural history of Mt. Hood and the history of explorers and downhill skiing on the mountain.

Hood_Gorge_Regions_Mt_Hood_Territory_02What major destinations in Mt. Hood Territory?  

  • Hood Scenic Byway  The Mt. Hood Scenic Byway follows an exhilarating route around one of Oregon’s most iconic landmarks, offering exposure to some of the state’s most stunning scenery and sought after recreational destinations. Moving south from the lush agritourism of the Hood River Valley, you’ll approach the alpine environs of Mt. Hood, experienced at Timberline Lodge at the 6,000 ft. elevation, drop down into temperate rainforests along the Villages of Mt. Hood, and finally return to the verdant farmlands of eastern Multnomah County and the cities of Woodville and Troutdale, the Gateway to the Gorge. Four-season recreational activities and rich pioneer history await you the distance of the Byway, along with ever-shifting vistas of Oregon’s highest peak.
  • Clackamas River Recreation Area – In Estacada, recreation is centered around the Clackamas River, which carves a deep canyon south of town.  Clackamas River is a premier fishing, white-water rafting and kayaking river with camping sites along the river bank.  The upper Clackamas whitewater festival takes place here each May, the largest white-water rafting event on the West Coast. The West Cascades Scenic Byway and Cascading Rivers Scenic Bikeway wind along the rushing river.
  • Mountain Biking (Sandy Ridge, Mt. Hood Skibowl) – Ride in the shadow of Oregon’s tallest peak, Mt. Hood. The Mt. Hood National Forest is home to 140 miles of mountain biking trails and multi-use trails open to bikes. To the west of the mountain, Sandy Ridge contains 15 outstanding miles of flow single-track and decent winter accessibility due to its location. On Mt. Hood itself, check out 40 miles of lift-serviced riding, a free-ride park and a skills park at Mt. Hood Skibowl.
  • Wildwood Recreation Site/Cascade Streamwatch – The Wildwood Recreation Site is a day-use area that is home to the Cascade Streamwatch Trail and Wildwood Wetlands Trail. Visitors have a chance to explore natural stream and wetland ecosystems along accessible interpretive trails and boardwalks and observe native fish in a unique underwater fish-viewing chamber. The site offers family picnic units and fully accessible trails. It also provides access to the Salmon River and an extensive system of trails in the Salmon Huckleberry Wilderness.
  • Timberline Lodge & Ski Area – Timberline Lodge and Ski Area sits at the 6,000-foot level of Mt. Hood, Oregon’s tallest peak at 11,235 feet. With inspiring views of the summit, Timberline offers the longest ski season in North America and over 1,000 acres of hiking trails. A National Historic Landmark, Timberline Lodge was built by the Works Progress Administration (WPA) in 1937 as part of a make-work project during the Great Depression. The hand-hewn building is a prime example of Cascadian architecture and offers intimate accommodations and fine dining
  • Hood Skibowl and Summer Adventure Park – Mt. Hood Skibowl is America’s largest night ski area and the closest ski resort to Portland. The Snow Tube and Adventure Park at Skibowl East is fun for all ages and offers the only Cosmic Tubing experience. The summer adventure park offers over 20 attractions for adrenaline junkies or the family. Try bungee jumping, race cars, zip lines, mountain biking, and alpine slides, plus amazing scenic views.

Hood_Gorge_Regions_Mt_Hood_Territory_03Marquee Events:

  • Upper Clackamas Whitewater Festival The closest whitewater rafting and kayaking to Portland. Hosts the Upper Clackamas Whitewater Festival in May, the largest annual whitewater event in the Northwest. Good for salmon, steelhead fishing Dec-May and trout fishing late May thru mid-October. Enjoy amazing scenic vistas along the Wild Scenic section and the West Cascades Scenic Byway. The lower Clackamas is popular for paddlers taking in a leisurely float along the more tranquil waters.
  • Ski the Glade Annual downhill ski event is an opportunity to ski the closed Glade Trail from Timberline Lodge to Government Camp.  Before the advent of chairlift, skiers road buses and cars to Timberline and skied trails the 3 miles from Timberline to the village.  Once a year the museum, under permit from the US Forest Service and with the assistance of Timberline Lodge, grooms the Glade Trail, hires airport shuttle buses and recreates this historic way of skiing on Mount Hood.  The day includes lunch, and apre’s ski party.  Reservations required.  
  • Timberline Summer Concert Series – Continuing the Labor Day tradition of free live roots music at Timberline Lodge’s historic outdoor amphitheater, will be an all-day mountain music festival on Labor Day. The festival in the lodge’s historic outdoor amphitheater is one of Timberline’s ways of giving back to the community and celebrating the wonderful mountain setting. This year’s lineup promises powerful performances from some of Americana music’s leading contemporary artists. 

Hood_Gorge_Mt_Hood_Territory_Chamber_of_Commerce_02Don’t forget to visit  Oregon’s Mt. Hood Territory for more information about the region’s attractions and lodging before your vacation or road trip to Mt. Hood Territory.

 

 

 

REGIONS

With year-round hiking, skiing, waterfall-chasing, beer-drinking, and adventuring, the Mt. Hood-Gorge region is always ready for you. To keep you in the loop while you’re away, our weekly blog posts spread the word about trip ideas, events, and memories throughout the entire Mt. Hood-Gorge region.

EXPLORE THE FOUR REGIONS →

  TRIP IDEAS

Start your adventure treking across a mountain or through a rainforest. Spend a day chasing waterfalls as you travel up the Columbia River Gorge. Then spend a day on the river windsurfing or kiteboarding. Finally, your journey is not complete without world-class fishing on the Columbia.

START PLANING YOUR TRIP →
  VIDEOS

Mt. Hood and the Columbia River Gorge are unquestionably two of the most beautiful places on earth. Whether you're looking up the Columbia from the Vista House or Rowena Crest, taking in Mt. Hood from Timberline Lodge or gliding past old-growth Douglas-firs on the Clackamas River, your eyes will never tire.

GO AHEAD AND TAKE A PEEK →
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For trip planning go to our Resources Page. View or Order our Visitor's Guide. Questions? Contact Us.