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Our Mt. Hood Day Trip

Posted by on June 14, 2011

When we were planning our trip to the States, we had to make a decision between Mt. Rainer & Mt. St. Helens OR Mt. Hood and the Columbia River Gorge. We chose the former as it was a two for one deal. Since we were making good time we thought, why not see it all? We came all this way!

We boogied our way towards the Mt. Hood National Forest and stayed at Tollgate campground near Rhododendron. Yes, that’s a long name! Great little campground with only about 14 spots. Everything is amazingly mossy. Everything! Every rock, tree, and stump is covered in thick green moss.

The next day we headed for Mt. Hood. A dormant volcano, just to switch it up some from all of our active volcano adventures. Mt. Hood is the highest point in Oregon at 11,245 feet and home to 12 glaciers. The striking thing about Mt. Hood is how incredibly snow covered and white it is. A truly beautiful and scenic mountain.

From our campsite we headed to Timberline Lodge. It is a quick climb from the highway up to 6,000 feet. Poor Navi! Up and down continuously since Saskatchewan. Timberline Lodge is a ski resort that is still in full swing this time of the year. It’s an up close and personal mountain view! There were lots of skiers and snow borders, not to mention a few climbers. Mt. Hood is the 2nd most glaciated climbed mountain, next to Mt. Fugi. Trust me, I don’t have all these facts in the back of my head, rather from the travel guide!

The trip from Timberline Lodge to Hood River is an interesting drive. Lots of neat orchards and scenic views of Mt. Hood. We were thinking of doing the train ride from Hood River to Parkdale, but we missed the train. Too late for that day. We will have to cross that mode of transportation off our list another day. Hood River is a neat, little town; kite boarding capital of the world. There are some serious white caps on that Columbia River!

From Hood River we drove the historic Columbia River Highway (30). There are 5 different waterfalls you can view along the way. Two of them named Horsetail Falls and Bridal Veil Falls. Comical to us as that is also the name of the two falls on the highway into Valdez, Alaska. I guess there is only so many names for waterfall!

The most prized waterfall on the historic highway is the Multnomah Falls at over 600 feet. This amazing, two tiered falls is worth stopping for. At this point in the day we were getting hungry. We stopped at the restaurant at Multnomah Fall. Very upscale with a fantastic glass roof giving you a great view of the falls. After a great meal, we were ready to do the 1 1/4 mile hike to the top of the falls. That’s not so far, right? Well at about 3 out of 11 switchbacks in I was regretting ordering the ribeye at the restaurant. Why did I do that!!? We talked to one of the hikers coming down and she said it was so worth it, so we continued on. OK, now 11 out of 11 switchbacks. Yeah! Oh, but kind of disappointing as the view is much better from below than above the falls. Oh well, great exercise.

We had a very enjoyable time camping in the mountains; now off to the Oregon Coast!

One Response to Our Mt. Hood Day Trip

  1. Jawad

    Hey, how are you guys doing? Beautiful Pictures. Waterfall is amazing, I want to see this place soon. Take care. Saskatoon is missing you guys!