Mt. Hood’s distinctive, breathtaking peak and the verdant canopy of old-growth rainforest are two features that characterize the natural beauty of the Mt. Hood National Forest in central Oregon.
- Covers more than a million acres in central Oregon, from the Columbia River Gorge to Mt. Jefferson.
- Easily accessed from Highway 35 south from Hood River or Highway 26 east from Portland.
- Scenery, hiking, skiing, camping, fishing, and wildlife viewing are popular activities.
Mt. Hood National Forest covers an amazing million acres of the Oregon Cascades, stretching from the Columbia River Gorge in the north to Mt. Jefferson in the south. The stunning slopes of Mt. Hood highlight this northwestern National Forest region, and visitors are attracted year-round to the area’s diverse recreational opportunities.
In the winter, travelers enjoy skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoeing—the gamut of cold-weather sports. The summer months are popular for sightseeing, historic drives, hiking and backpacking, camping, fishing, and water sports on the forest’s many lakes and rivers. Mt. Hood is a dormant volcano, and evidence of volcanic activity can still be witnessed in the lava formations and still-active fumaroles in her vicinity.
Location & Information
Mt. Hood National Forest stretches from Hood River on the Columbia River Gorge to its southern boundary at Mt. Jefferson. The forest can be accessed via Highway 35 south from Hood River or Highway 26 east from Portland. For information, contact the Mt. Hood National Forest Visitor Information Center, (503) 622-3017 or 1 (888) 622-4822.
- Sightseeing: views of Mt. Hood, Mt. Jefferson, and other Cascade Range mountains and ridges are unparalleled.
- Skiing and snow sports: six sno-parks and a multitude of trails are scattered around Mt. Hood’s slopes.
- Hiking, camping, and backpacking: Timberline Trail skirting Mt. Hood and the famed Pacific Crest Trail are found within this national forest.
- Wildlife and bird watching: bald and golden eagle, redtail hawk, deer, elk, black bear, bighorn sheep, wolves, and even mountain lions can be seen here.
- Fishing, both float and fly, for salmon, steelhead, trout, and more.