Terrebonne, OR— Smith Rock State Park was one of the highlights of my trip to Oregon. The views here were very different from the rest of the state. Contrary to east coast expectations, Oregon is not all rain and trees. The dry desert vibe was welcomed after the frigid cold winds at Crater Lake National Park the day prior.

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Here it was warm with a cool breeze and great views from the moment you park in the lot. Rock climbers and hikers flock to this park and for good reason, it’s a beautiful spot with tons of rock walls, hikes, and a relaxing river flowing around the peaks.

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The Misery Ridge trail will get you to the summit and following the Mesa Verde trail from there will get you back down including a nice walk along the river returning you to the entrance. If you’d like, you can turn around at the summit and go back the way you came but I love when hikes loop as opposed to “out and back” where you return the same way you came in. The loop using Misery Ridge and Mesa Verde offers new views the entire time.

Misery Ridge Summit | Photo by Annie Parker

Misery Ridge Summit | Photo by Annie Parker

If you have the time to visit Smith Rock State Park I would definitely recommend it. This hike has a round trip time of 2-3 hours (probably less if you don’t stop to Instagram) and I’d say is easy to moderate in difficulty with stunning views. Definitely worth the pay-off!