There’s nothing quite like spending a warm afternoon lounging in the cool shade of a towering tree. But what if you could climb among those trees, or better yet, sleep in them? In Oregon, you can. Explore one of the state’s coolest adventure parks, where you can actually 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 among the trees, you’ll get a new view on one of the most forested states in the country with these in-the-trees adventures.
Have you ever wondered what it would be like to walk high among the trees, balancing on mid-air bridges and tight ropes as you 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 kind in the country. With platforms and obstacles, it’s an aerial playground of bridges, tight ropes, balance beams and more than a dozen 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.
If you’re up for a serious tree-climbing adventure, head to Pacific Tree Climbing Institute in Eugene, where you can climb up an old Douglas fir tree, about 280 feet in the air, 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. 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.
The Out ‘n’ About Treehouse Treesort — near Cave Junction and about 90 miles west of Ashland — will make you feel like you’re in a fairy tale, with more than a dozen treehouse options to choose from. Complete with plumbing and full kitchens, you’ll be perched high within an oak grove in 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 zip line course, horseback riding and treehouse construction tutorials. Fall is a good time to book for the following summer; while the Treesort is open all year-round, summer months and holidays fill up fast.
At the Coast (on Highway 6, about an hour east of Tillamook), explore the Tillamook Forest Center, where the super kid-friendly interpretive center ($5 suggested donation for admission) shows how we connect with the forest on a daily basis. Built along the Wilson River — on a 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. Surrounding the campus are picnic tables, walking trails and a suspension bridge that spans the Wilson River, a lovely way to stretch the legs.