4 Amazing Hikes in Oregon
By Tobin Carlberg I July 18, 2022
As the majority of the NexiGo team is based in Oregon, we are lucky to live so close to many of the wonderful hiking spots around the state! And having traveled a bit, I can tell you they are amazing.
Now that we’re right in the middle of summer, it’s the perfect time to hit the trails. From the diverse wildlife to all the beautiful trees, you can find some epic views right in Portland’s backyard. Here’s a tiny glimpse of what Oregon has to offer.
After first hearing about God’s Thumb, I thought it was some ancient statue sitting deep in the woods — and I wasn’t far off. It’s a grassy, thumb-shaped hill that overlooks the Pacific Ocean. It can be a steep and windy climb up God’s Thumb, so be careful when you make your way there. As you reach the top and look directly south of the hill, you can see the sandy coastline and the cute little town of Lincoln City.
To avoid trekking through private property, parking for God’s Thumb has been moved to NE Devils Lake Blvd. Along the way you will reach a fork in the trail — you can either head straight to God’s Thumb or take a left to see The Knoll. Many hikers skip right past this section, but it’s another great viewpoint of Lincoln City that’s definitely worth checking out. For more detailed info about the trail, there’s an Oregon Hiker’s Guide that will surely point you in the right direction.
Arguably one of the best hikes in the Gorge, Angel’s Rest sits 1,500 feet above the Columbia River, blessing you with a spectacular view of the water and all the Douglas fir trees that Oregon is so famous for. On a sunny day, it’s a wonderful picnic spot to enjoy the Columbia River Gorge in all its natural glory.
The trail is a bit rocky on the way up, so make sure you put on your best hiking shoes before you go. It's a 2.4-mile climb to the top, but the views are definitely worth the trip. Once you find the cliffside, take in the fresh air and be proud of yourself for reaching the top. After all, it’s no easy feat.
Eagle Creek Trail
Four years after the infamous fires of 2017, the Eagle Creek Trail was able to reopen in the spring of 2021. With all the destruction the wildfires caused, it’s a miracle this trail is still intact. But above all, I’m just glad that we can experience this amazing place again, as it’s one of the best hikes in the state for waterfalls. In its entirety, the Eagle Creek Trail spans 25.8 miles out and back, featuring eight major waterfalls along the way.
If you don’t want to hike that far, there’s a majestic waterfall called Punch Bowl Falls that’s only two miles from the entrance (pictured above). This is a great spot to take photos and go for a little swim if you’d like.
Smith Rock State Park
Taking a trip to Central Oregon is quite a drive from Portland, but the beautiful rocks and river canyons make it a see-it-to-believe-it type of destination. The views are absolutely breathtaking and require many visits to explore the entirety of this 641-acre park. Since there are so many spots and trails to explore, the mere size of Smith Rock may feel daunting, but just take your time and you will have an experience like no other.
Take a more casual stroll through the River Trail and watch the rock climbers scale the walls above — and who knows, you may spot the occasional golden eagle or sun-bathing river otter along the way. For the more adventurous traveler, Misery Ridge is a 3,360-foot summit, providing a great viewpoint of the park’s famous Monkey Face Rock and a better look at the gently-flowing Crooked River.
Be prepared for your next adventure
I hope you learned something new from this list, and you continue to keep exploring all the hidden gems that Oregon has to offer! But before you head off to your next hike, it’s strongly recommended that you bring these essentials:
- Hiking backpack
- Plenty of snacks
- Bottled water
- First-aid kit
- Hiking shoes with the right traction
- A compass and maps for navigation (in case you lose phone service)
- Trekking poles (improve your stability on the trail and reduce pressure on your knees)
- Spare clothing (you never know when you might wind up stepping through water or getting hit by an Oregon rain shower)
And if you’re trekking through the Oregon trail for more than a few hours, a NexiGo Solar Power Bank can keep all your devices charged whenever you need them. It also comes equipped with a flashlight so you will always know where you’re going, even when it gets dark outside.
Remember to stay safe and have fun!