There’s nothing like spending a summer afternoon in the cool shade of a large oak tree with a picnic or a book or just a few good friends. But what if you could climb amongst those trees, or better yet, sleep in them? In Oregon, you can. Explore one of the state’s coolest adventure parks, where you can literally walk on air. Or, spend a night 40-feet above the ground in the most luxurious tree house you’ll ever see. Whether you’re in midair or walking amongst the trees, explore Oregon’s original resident.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to walk high amongst the trees, balancing on mid-air bridges and tight ropes and swing from limb to limb? You’ll feel like you’re in The Jungle Book at Tree to Tree Adventure Park, one of the first treehouse parks of its type in the country. With platforms and obstacles, it’s an aerial playground of bridges, tight ropes, balance beams and 19 interspersed zip lines including a 1280-foot super zip with views of nearby Hagg Lake. With an Adventure Village for the park’s youngest explorers, age 2-8, and a Treetop Plunge from 65 feet in the air for the most daring, the park has something for all ages, heights and skill levels. Check out Grant McOmie’s visit for more inspiration.
If you’re up for a serious tree-climbing adventure, head to Pacific Tree Climbing Institute in Eugene, where you can climb up a tree about 280 feet in the air in the H.J. Andrews Experimental Forest and then relax in a Treeboat canopy with your new neighbors. From your epic perch, you’ll have views of the Cascade Mountain Range and the old-growth forest below. No previous climbing experience is necessary; expert guides will assist with safe climbing techniques, suitable for 8 to 80 years old. Overnight climbing trips are also available; you’ll ascend before nightfall, fall asleep under a starry sky and wake up with beverage service, chirping birds and a hot peppermint towel before your return.
At the Coast (on Highway 6, about an hour east of Tillamook), explore the Tillamook Forest Center, where the super kid-friendly interpretive center (free admission; donations welcome) shows how we connect with the forest on a daily basis. Built along the Wilson River — on landscape that was once devastated by a series of fires in the 1930s and 40s — you can climb the 40-foot tall replica of a fire lookout tower, watch a film in the mini theater and take a class, like “Salmon in Our Streams” or “Mysterious Mushrooms of the Tillamook Forest.” Surrounding the campus are picnic tables, walking trails and a suspension bridge that spans the Wilson River, a lovely way to stretch the legs. Check out Grant McOmie’s visit for more inspiration.
The Out ‘n’ About Treehouse Treesort near Cave Junction, 90 miles west of Ashland (and on your way to the Redwoods) will make you feel like you’re in a fairy tale, with 17 treehouse options to choose from. Complete with plumbing and full kitchens, you’ll be perched high within an Oak grove of the Siskiyou National Forest, about 40 feet above the ground. With names like the Treezebo and Swiss Family Complex, the cozy retreats are ideal for groups of two to four. By day, explore the zipline course, horseback riding and treehouse construction tutorials and return home inspired for more adventure. Fall is a good time to book for the following summer; while the Treesort is open all year-round, summers and holidays fill up fast.