We have friends in from out of town and I wanted to explore nature in a typically Oregonian fashion by heading to Hood and doing a hike from Timberline Lodge. Even though I’m an explorer by nature, it took me (embarrassingly) more than 2 years to even visit Timberline Lodge and that was back in August when my cousin came to visit from Pennsylvania.
I opened up 60 Guides Within 60 Miles of Portland as well as my AllTrails app and found a suitable out-and-back that wouldn’t kill those in our group of 7 who weren’t up for a full 13-mile hike down to Zigzag. Here’s the link from OregonHikers.org
The views from this height are spectacular. Quite a bit of bare rock during parts of the trail including at the turn around point. But it is mixed with forest and the difficulty level is rated as easy to moderate. The boys and I notched it up significantly at the turn around point by climbing the challenging sandy ridge up to a higher vantage point. But after that I was ready to head back to the lodge.
As it is mid October, I wasn’t sure how to dress so we were overprepared with extra layers and plenty of food just in case we got stranded somewhere. But this is a heavily trafficked path with only one obvious way back and forth so we were quite safe even though I did text a friend to check up on us by 5PM just in case (not a bad idea to give travel plans to someone, including the hike name you are headed for).