Explore the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area and Enjoy the Breathtaking Sights
Hood River and the surrounding Columbia River Gorge region are renowned for their diverse options for outdoor activities, providing excitement and adventure for visitors of all ages and interests. However, few vacation experiences compare to hiking and exploring the natural beauty and iconic sightseeing spots that you’ll encounter within the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area.
The Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area offers a wealth of natural sights and dynamic hiking trails for visitors to explore, all within a handy distance from Hood River. Read on below for a detailed look at some of the most remarkable natural landmarks that you can visit within the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area!
Incredible Natural Landmarks Near Hood River You Won’t Want to Miss
Below, we’ve broken down a list of phenomenal natural landmarks for you to check out during your time in Hood River and the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. Plan a hiking trip to these spots and cross a few lines off of your bucket list of Oregon’s top sights!
Towering at over 600 feet in height, Multnomah Falls are not only the most monumental waterfalls in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area, but in all of Oregon. An easy half-mile climb uphill will take you to the historic Benson Bridge for a picturesque view.
This challenging but rewarding hike is a must for any thrill-seeker visiting the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. Open to the public year-round (though be mindful of hiking during the wetter seasons of the year when conditions turn hazardous), Munra Point spans over the course of 6 miles roundtrip, on top of an elevation gain of nearly 2,300 feet, leading you to some of the most gorgeous views of the gorge from atop a sheer, dramatic ridge.
A nearly 5-mile trek roundtrip, Angel’s Rest offers visitors a moderately challenging hike any time of the year. Traverse the nearly 1500-foot elevation gain and you’ll be rewarded with the 270-degree views of the Columbia River Gorge from an exposed bluff, said to be among the gorge’s best views.
The Larch Mountain trail is another difficult but iconic hiking destination within the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area. Take the trail on this extinct volcano and you’ll encounter stunning waterfalls and a 360-degree view of the gorge. Plan your trek between April and November, when this almost 15-mile trail and its intense 4,000-foot elevation gain are open to the public.
Rowena Crest Viewpoint
An easy hike with scenic views, Rowena Crest Viewpoint is a 1-mile trail with a breezy elevation gain of 100 feet. Visit during any time of the year and take in fantastic views of the gorge and a photo-worthy view of the road. Wildflower season is a particularly wonderful time to visit this trail and enjoy a profusion of blooms.
Elowah Falls is another lovely year-round sightseeing spot with an enjoyable mile and a half-long hike. After gaining 280 feet in elevation, the waterfalls here cascade from McCord Creek into an immense fall site formed from unique lava flows.
These hiking trails and natural sightseeing spots are well-worth seeing firsthand during your time in Hood River, each landmark adding its own awe-inspiring moment to your vacation experience. Make a cool vacation memory at one of these iconic locales and you won’t regret it!
About the Author: Carly Corderman is a freelance writer who blogs about activities, attractions, and other travel topics in the Hood River area for www.hrvacations.com.