If we were to ask you why you truly love Hood River, it might be at once the easiest and hardest question to answer.
Maybe your knee-jerk is to say the beer, the waterfront, or the mountain. But tomorrow you might discover the magic of a new winery or a trailside mushroom you never knew was edible (and delicious). Here, we all share the same feeling: no matter what we’re up to, when we look around, we pinch ourselves. And we’d all like for it to stay that way. So below, find our quick tips on how to Love HR and make sure HR is able to love us all back for generations to come.
Sign the pledge, get this sticker:
From wanderlust first-time visitors, to familiar neighborhood faces, both treasure the uniqueness of this special place by choosing to shop local.
Tips for planning your shopping experience:
- Call ahead to check special or holiday hours
- Want to make it a quick trip? Shop online and pick up in-store
- Bring a reusable bag if you can to help out the environment
Plan your shopping excursion by checking out visithoodriver.com for a complete list of places to shop local!Explore Shops
Master the Mountain
When Mt. Hood dresses up in winter all-white formals, we swoon. Hood River is the perfect basecamp for all snow sports. Though she can look friendly and sweet under a blanket of snow, it’s important to take all necessary precautions when you head into the hills for a snowy adventure.
How to have fun in the pow:
- Keep a shovel in your car on days with snow in the forecast
- If you venture into the backcountry, always tell someone where you’ll be going
- Make sure you’re properly equipped with all the gear and knowledge you need to be safe and successful
Pro tip: Don’t skip a big slice and a pint at Sawtooth Roadhouse on your way back down the mountain.Trip Check Crag Rats Mt. Hood National Forest Mt. Hood Meadows
Our valley is bursting at the seams with fresh fruit, vegetables, and other gifts from Mother Nature herself. So it’s no wonder that it makes a major showing at most of our beloved restaurants, food trucks, farmers market, grocery stores, farmer co-ops, and more.
Get the most out of your experience:
- Call ahead whenever possible
- Be patient and modify your expectations on busy weekends
- Don’t forget about the food trucks!
Pro tip: Swing by the Hood River Farmers Market on Saturday mornings (9am – 1pm) in the parking lot across from Full Sail Brewery.Where to Eat Where to Drink
Imbibe with the Best
A defining pillar of our town is the absolute abundance of best-in-class beer and wine. And cider, liquor, kombucha, coffee, and tea, for that matter.
Tips for tasting all the things:
- Plan ahead, the Gorge does not have Lyft, Uber, etc.)
- ake advantage of the many guided tours (like The HOP)
- Learn your nearby public transportation (CAT) stops
Pro tip: It’s tempting to visit all the wine bars and breweries downtown, but don’t skip the off-the-beaten-path gems!Breweries in the Gorge Gorge Cider Society Gorge Wine Hood River Wine Alliance
Win the Wagging
Here in Hood River, we’re dog people. Furry companions love the sun, water, and fresh air just as much as their human counterparts it seems!
Maximize your trip for both you and your pup:
- Be aware and sometimes actively seek out leash laws and pet guidelines in public spaces
- Always carry your own poop bags
- Take care to ensure your buddy doesn’t bother other travelers or local wildlife
We’ll just say it outright: we love biking. From road rides up Eastside Road to downhill in Post Canyon to gravel grinding or even hopping on an e-bike, our preferred mode of transportation is two-wheeled.
Before you hit the trailhead remember:
- Don’t ride muddy trails
- Uphill riders have the right of way
- All bikes should stay on designated roads/trails
Pro tip: Nothing hits the spot like a cold beer with a view after a long ride!Hood River Area Trail Stewards
Our parks are a point of pride. From traditional children’s playgrounds to walking/running trails to a skate park and bike skills park for all abilities, we’ve invested in creating spaces for (safe) togetherness.
Before you pack your picnic, keep these tips in mind:
- Remember to pick up your trash
- Be respectful of others and of Hood River flora and fauna
- Some parks experience seasonal closures. Check before you arrive
Pro tip: Beat the crowds and see the most wildlife in the early morning.Hood River Parks and Rec City of Hood River Parks
Find Fun on the Fruit Loop
Warning: once your family gets a taste of the fun of the Fruit Loop, it will become a tradition. It’s impossible to overstate the magic of a pear orchard basking in the summer sun, and the rich history of the people that have poured generations of love into the fertile Hood River valley soil.
A few quick reminders before you embark:
- Don’t help yourself to roadside fruit (even if it’s on the ground)
- Always be mindful of where you’re parking/pulling off for a quick pic
- Be respectful of businesses’ on-site guidelines and etiquette
Pro tip: Visit individual farms’/businesses’ websites before you plan your trip. They’re not all open for visitors at the same time.Hood River Fruit Loop
When we’re looking for the true insider’s take on how to plan and execute the perfect trip, we look to the experts. Whether you’re hoping to taste the jaw-dropping variety of Hood River Valley wine or get picture-perfect hiking views followed by farm-to-table lunch, our guide services’ number one focus is on your crew having a stellar time.
How to get the local’s-eye view:
- Book as early as possible.
- Come prepared—most guides will send out a checklist of things to remember.
- Don’t forget to tip!
Pro tip: Book local! While there are many amazing guided services in Portland and beyond, it’s best to choose a company that’s local to the Gorge.
Bonus: Each time you go guided you support anywhere from 5-10 small local businesses!Find Your Tour
Be a Stellar Swimmer
What’s more glorious than plunging into cool water on a hot summer day? We’d contend that there’s very little. But no matter whether you’re hopping into the Columbia or you’ve found a secret river or lakeside spot, keep a few key tips in mind.
Tips for jumping in with both feet:
- Leave no trace
- On the Columbia, distance yourself from kiteboarders launching and landing
- Fully investigate river current before you swim out
Pro tip: The wind is typically calmer in the early morning and evening.Port of Hood River