Wow, where to start.
Before you begin planning out your hikes, you’d be silly not to do a little research first.
Pretty much all destinations these days, you’re going to end up being charged money in some way or another. State/county/forest service/private corporations all have their hands out waiting for you to pay to park, pay to use the trail, etc. So make sure before you drive all the way out somewhere you find out if you need to get a permit along the way.
Some common sense things:
- Bring Water. Yes, even when its raining (and yes it does rain quite a lot in Oregon, but we got hiking anyway). Do not drink from native streams, they have some pretty gross stuff in them these days.
- Don’t rely on your GPS and/or cell phone. Research the area you’re going into, bring a map, bring a compass.
- Let someone know where you are heading and when you will be back. If you fall down a cliff or break a leg, they need to know where to send the rescue party.
- If you run out of water, don’t try to drink your own pee, regardless of what Bear Grylls says on his show. Its toxic. And he’s an idiot.
- Don’t leave valuables in your car. Leave them at home or bring them with you.
- Bring an extra set of socks in your pack, and put them in a ziploc bag. Because you KNOW you’ll walk through a stream or a huge puddle (especially if you’re hiking in Oregon).
- Bring a flashlight and extra batteries, in case you get delayed and don’t make it back to the car before it gets dark.
- Carry a Bic lighter in your pack, even if you don’t smoke. Being a boy scout and using flint and steel to make a fire if you’re stranded may look heroic in the movies, but a 1 second flick of a butane lighter sure is easier!
- Don’t be a litter bug – whatever you bring in, pack it back out.
- Know when you have too many bullet points on a page and know when to stop so people can get to the links below them.
We have found that William Sullivan’s “100 Hikes” series have some great info (maps, directions, difficulty of hike, etc). You can find them in local bookstores, on Amazon, or direct from the publisher at:
Another nice series of books are the Moon set. The Oregon one has more than 490 hikes in it, with similar info to the Sullivan series above. You can find the Moon series at:
We also use the heck out of Google to see if there are any online resources for our destinations. Oregon state has some great online resources, I imagine most states are the same.
Some specific sites we think you should visit include:
World Of Waterfalls was some pretty awesome shots of waterfalls around the world. I’ve linked to the Oregon page there so you can see many of our planned destinations. Feel free to look around at some of their other destinations while there.
Timberline Lodge at the base of Mount Hood, is a beautiful destination. We’ve hiked all around it, and have several pictures of it posted here. And I must say, their website is beautiful as well. Check it out.
Friends Of The Columbia Gorge also have a great site with info about our most-hiked area, the Columbia River Gorge, which separates Oregon from Washington.
Mount Hood National Forest maintains an information site that we’ve found handy when it comes to finding where stuff is and how much it costs to park/hike/use the facilities.
Trails.com is another great resource for finding hikes all over, I’ve linked to the Oregon ones but its simple to search other areas.
Oregon.com has a specific hiking section on their web site.
Portland Hikers also has a popular site, check them out when you’re done here.
Trails Northwest is another great local resource for hikes in Oregon, Washington, and Idaho.
The Pacific Crest Trail Association has some excellent information on this hiking trail that spans from Mexico to Canada along the Cascade Mountains.
Looking for the absolute best hike in a particular area? Try checking BestHike.com for more information.
Check back here often, and if you have a related web site you’d like me to add a link to, send it to me and I will take a look at your site. If I feel it is a worthwhile addition to our site, I will definitely add it here, and ask that you link back to us as well.
You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.