State park top picks for history, nature, disc golf & bicycling (2014)
Finding the right Oregon state park for you is a matter of taste and exploration, but we’re offering a few ideas to get you started for spring and summer. The parks listed below include links to the park web pages, which include a full description, photos and driving directions. Looking for more ideas? You can always try a custom park search at www.oregonstateparks.org.
Our next story will highlight hiking, picnicking, bird watching and those small, hidden but magnificent state parks. If you’d like to chat with a real live human about exploring a new park, give us a call at 1-800-551-6949, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. – 5 p.m.
Kam Wah Chung State Heritage Site – depicts the lives of late 19th-century Chinese immigrants in John Day. The museum is a time capsule of the lives of herbal medicine practitioner Ing Hay and store proprietor Lung On.
Collier Memorial State Park – historic logging equipment museum and campground along the Williamson River and Spring Creek confluence.
Champoeg State Heritage Area – site of the 1843 vote for Oregon’s first provisional government. The park has two museums, a visitor center and campground, as well as the Historic Butteville Store.
Thompson’s Mills State Heritage Site – take a guided tour of Oregon’s oldest water-powered mill.
Carl G. Washburne Memorial State Park – this coastal park and campground has trails, a creek and 5-miles of beach. You may catch a glimpse of a Roosevelt elk.
Ecola State Park – Ecola is all about the scenery, from cliff side vistas of the ocean to secluded beaches and lush forests.
Cascadia State Park – situated along the South Santiam River, Cascadia includes a small campground and group camp, trails and Soda Creek Falls.
Guy W. Talbot State Park – a secluded day-use park at the west end of the Columbia River Gorge. Take a short hike to Latourell Falls.
Milo McIver State Park – play disc golf and camp at McIver. Designed for both beginners and pros, the 27-hole Riverbend course is open year-round.
Dexter State Recreation Site – straddling the Middle Fork Willamette River, Dexter features a native white oak woodland and a challenging 18-hole disc golf course.
Benson State Recreation Area – not only can you play disc golf, but you can also try your luck fishing for stocked rainbow trout in the lake.
Historic Columbia River Highway State Trail – bike or hike along three different, paved sections of the old highway.
OC&E Trail – eight miles of paved trail from Klamath Falls to Olene, but you could ride the entire 100-mile trail!