Hiking is a lot more fun when you can bring your four-legged friend. Why just leave them at home when they can get some fresh air and exercise too? Oregon has miles of trails where pets are welcome on a leash. While our big icon Crater Lake only has a few limited tail-friendly options – most without views of the lake – there are still many state parks, recreation areas and national forests where you can take your collared hiker. These are ten of our favorites.
1. Ramona Falls
A fairy-tale-like waterfall on a dog-friendly trail – it doesn’t get much better than Ramona Falls. There’s a 7-mile loop you can take out to see this gorgeous cascade, along with a wooden bridge at the base of the falls that makes for great photo ops.
2. Sisters Mirror Lake, Three Sisters Wilderness
In the Three Sisters Wilderness near Bend, the Mirror Lakes Trail offers a beautiful day hike with your leashed friends. The route follows the southwest side of the lake for about 8 ½ miles RT. On a clear day you’ll be treated to incredible views of South Sister reflecting in the water.
3. Opal Creek, Willamette National Forest
Opal Pool is the main highlight of this trail, but the hike out is just as enchanting. It leads through lush forest past many old mining structures. The emerald pool also features a lovely waterfall, and serves as a swimming hole to cool off in during the summer.
4. Neahkahnie Mountain, Oswald West State Park
Climbing Neahkahnie isn’t like most mountains – this one sits above the coast and is relatively accessible even for intermediate hikers (and their leashed buds too). It’s steep, but the trek is worth it. The panoramic views of the ocean could not be any more spectacular. In the spring the hike becomes even more lovely when colorful wildflowers bloom along the trail.
5. Horsetail Falls, Columbia River Gorge
By the Columbia River Gorge, Horsetail Falls Loop doesn’t have only one cascade to see, but three – including Ponytail Falls, which you can walk behind – and the beautiful Oneonta Falls. It’s an easy, family and pet-friendly trip, at just over 2 miles with barely any elevation gain.
6. 1000 Acres, Sandy River Delta
1000 Acres is basically a huge dog park, just outside of Portland near the Columbia River Gorge. It encompasses miles of trails where they can run off-leash and play fetch, as well as access to the Sandy River where they can swim on a hot summer day.
7. Tryon Creek Trail, Portland
If you’re looking to hike with Spot without leaving Portland, make a trip to Tryon Creek State Park. It’s an urban oasis with tall trees, moss and total tranquility. The park has several easy-to-navigate trails, swinging bridges to cross and paved routes for bikers as well.
8. Angel’s Rest, Columbia River Gorge
Angel’s Rest is a legendary five-mile climb, with expansive views of the Columbia River. It leads up quickly through the woods and over boulders before reaching the top of a bluff. From here you’ll get a 270-degree perspective of the Gorge, and Beacon Rock to the north in Washington.
9. Cape Lookout Trail, near Tillamook
Cape Lookout is a beautiful coastal hike, set on a sandspit between the Pacific Ocean and Netarts Bay. A trail on the south side of the peninsula is accessible year round for both hikers and their leashed pets. It spans along seaside cliffs for 4.6 miles total, about 400 feet above the water. If you’re lucky and it’s not raining, the ocean views are just marvelous.
10. Wahclella Falls, Columbia River Gorge
The hike to Wahclella Falls is short, easy and filled with mossy views. It’s a pleasant 1.8-mile trip along Tanner Creek to reach this two-tiered cascade, and pets are welcome to tag along too. Combine this trip with the famous Multnomah Falls nearby – which is also dog-friendly.