Where to Camp with a View of Mount Hood

Who says the best views are reserved for the priciest hotel rooms? The region’s campgrounds invite visitors to spend nights near the waterfront and wake up to views of Mount Hood. Here are the best places to camp with a view of Mount Hood.

Camp with a view of Mount Hood at Trillium Lake. © Brizardh | Dreamstime.com

Trillium Lake Campground, Government Camp

Situated a short walk from its namesake lake—perhaps the most popular summer destination on Mount Hood—this campground also boasts postcard-worthy views of the iconic mountain. Spacious sites offer a bit more privacy than you’d expect from such a popular campground. A day-use area just a five minute walk away from the campground grants impressive views of Mount Hood and lake access. Some sites are available on a first-come, first-served basis, but most are reservable—book six months in advance if you’re planning a visit July-September. All of the campground’s nearly 60 sites are suited for tent camping, and many are suited for RVs of up to 40 feet (12.2 m), though utility hookups are not available. Vault toilets and potable water are available.

Marine Park Campground, Cascade Locks

This campground is a short walk from town and affords lovely views of Thunder Island and the Columbia River. With a peaceful natural setting that’s still close to the action, Marine Park Campground offers the best of both worlds. The campground is open year-round and is just a five-minute walk from downtown Cascade Locks, offering 15 sites (11 with power and water hookups) and views of the Columbia River and Thunder Island. Amenities include picnic tables, showers, restrooms, and free Wi-Fi. The dispersed camping area on the lawn is popular with PCT hikers in July and August. May 15-September 15, you must have a reservation (available in person or by phone). Fires and generators are not allowed.

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Deschutes River State Recreation Area, The Dalles

This quiet campground is a prime spot to spend a night under the stars. Situated in a forested canyon along the eastern banks of the Deschutes River, near its confluence with the Columbia River, and 16 miles (26 km) east of The Dalles, the park hosts more than 60 campsites for tents and RVs (electrical sites with water available) spread across four loops—one of which welcomes campers all year long. All sites come with a picnic table and fire ring, and hot showers are available (8am-8pm daily spring-fall). Several hiking, mountain biking, and equestrian trails leave from the campground, and anglers, boaters, and paddlers shove off from the Heritage Landing boat ramp on the river’s western shore. Keep an eye out for rattlesnakes late spring-early fall.

Maryhill State Park, Maryhill, WA

Campgrounds don’t get much more scenic than this one, nestled on the waterfront of the sparkling Columbia River. The campground is open year-round and hosts 20 standard sites, 50 full-hookup sites, and 2 primitive sites, along with restrooms, showers, and an RV dump station. A camp host sells ice and firewood. Little ones can play in the shallow beach area along the Columbia River, a dock makes it easy to cast a line or hop into a kayak, and the campground is close to Maryhill’s attractions.

Hoodview Campground, Government Camp

Perched on the southern shore of Timothy Lake, this aptly named campground delivers sweeping Mount Hood views. Hoodview is among the busiest of the lake’s already busy handful of campgrounds—so don’t expect solitude. That said, some of the sites at Hoodview (sites 32-34, specifically) sit along the lakeshore and offer impressive Mount Hood views; in addition, the road that connects Hoodview’s sites ends at the shore of Timothy Lake—popular for swimming, boating, paddling, and fishing, and magical sunset views. Vault toilets and potable water are available.

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