When is the best time of year to visit the Columbia River Gorge?
To be honest, there really isn’t a BAD time to visit the Columbia Gorge. There are a few months in the winter, when ice can be an issue, but even then the waterfalls are beautiful when they are half frozen over.
For wildflowers, the best time to visit is generally in late April through June. April is also peak bloom time for the orchards of the Hood River Valley and around The Dalles.
For the best weather (i.e. least chance of rain) late July through August are always a safe bet.
My favorite time of year in the Gorge is the fall, from about mid-September through the month of October. Most of the summer crowds are gone, the fall foliage puts on a stunning show (consistently one of the best in the US), and the bounty of the harvest is at its peak in the Hood River Valley. The weather is usually still pretty pleasant too.
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Vernon A. McDannald says…
Have had the good fortune to visit Oregon during each of the seasons the beauty is wonderful in each one
Other questions about Mt Hood & Columbia Gorge
- Is there an alpine slide somewhere around Mt. Hood?
- Hi we are planning a trip to Mount St Helens in July. We are coming in from Calgary with two tough girls aged 9 and 11. We will be very close to Oregon, and was wondering what fun things are there to do in Oregon? We had fun last year on the Hiawatha Trail in Idaho. I heard there were volcanoes near the coast? What fun ideas are there for a family visiting Oregon? – Jason W.
- We are traveling to Portland and would love to take right off and go on a nature excurion. We are considering Mt. Hood and Mt. St. Helen’s. Can you tell us which you would recommend and why? In both cases, can you recommend a wonderful place to stop for exquisite dining and wining? something we would never find on the East Coast? – Jan M.
About Ask Oregon Expert Cari Gesch
Cari, a resident of the Mount Hood foothills, is a photographer, writer, and wanderer of hiking trails and scenic byways. She captures images and stories of the experiences and destinations that make Oregon such an exciting place to live and play in on her blog, Wahkeena Exposures.