With an abundance of beautiful places to explore, it was difficult to narrow down dog-friendly hikes near Portland, Oregon to just five! Your dog doesn’t have to be the outdoorsy type to enjoy these hikes. Each one is super-easy.
From Portland, you and your four-legged friend can drive to these trails or historic areas, complete the hike and return in just a few hours (traffic permitting).
Don’t forget hiking gear for your dog. Consider a harness, protection from bugs, a pet first aid kit, treats, and poop bags before you head out. Most of these recommendations are based on personal experience, as I’ve hiked these trails with my three hounds many times over the years.
- The Pacific Crest Trail on Mt. Hood has one of the best hikes in all of Oregon.
- All three of our dogs were able to hike in 3–4 miles with no issues.
- Start at Timberline Lodge and enter near the ski lifts. They’re easy to find and well marked.
- Please keep your dog on a leash, as some of the trails have steep and narrow edges.
Travel 17.3 miles east of Sandy on US Hwy 26. Turn right (south) on Salmon River Road and follow it for 5 miles to the parking area. The Salmon River West trailhead is on the left (east) side of the road just north of the bridge.
- This trail accesses the Salmon-Huckleberry Wilderness Area and travels through mossy old-growth forest next to the wild and scenic Salmon River.
- The scenery is priceless even on a rainy day.
- This trail climbs from the edge of the Salmon River to a bluff with several viewpoints and follows the north shoulder of the river.
- A valid Recreation Pass is required at the Salmon River West trailhead from May 15th through Oct. 15th. Parking fees are $5 per car per day from May 15th through Oct.1st.
- There are several established campsites along the way for backpackers.
Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach, OR 97110
- Haystack Rock is one of Oregon’s most recognizable landmarks, home to colorful tidepools and diverse birdlife.
- The most convenient beach access to Haystack Rock is a block west of the public parking lot at Gower Street in the town’s Midtown area. A beautiful beach walk of about a mile leads to Haystack Rock from this location.
- Dogs are allowed to be off-leash on the beach, provided they are well-behaved
- There are many pet-friendly hotels in the area if you want to make it a weekend adventure!
- Carry a leash, fresh water, and poop bags on your beach walks. Your dogs may be tempted to drink from the ocean. Don’t let them!
- Bring your binoculars! The rocks and surrounding tidepools are home to many critters (the most accessible colony Tufted Puffins perch on the Rock in spring through summer) so keep your dog’s noses out of tidepools and don’t let them chase away those Puffins or you’ll have some very angry bird-watchers on your hands (paws?).
Starting at the Vietnam Memorial/Oregon Zoo, the trail is marked every quarter mile by blue, diamond-shaped blazes stenciled onto trees about six feet from the ground.
4001 Southwest Canyon Road, Portland, OR 97221
- The Wildwood Trail has been designated as a National Recreation Trail. It meanders for 29.6 breathtaking miles.
- There are multiple trailheads along the Wildwood Trail, a full list of which can be found online. Due to ongoing construction, please check the Trail Closures and Delays page of Portland’s Parks & Recreation website before departing
- Forest Park is a forested, natural area that supports sensitive wildlife habitats, fragile stream banks, and native plants.
- In all areas, leashes are required.
- All of Forest Park stretches more than seven miles of northwest Portland along the eastern slope of the Tualatin Mountains.
100 Peter Iredale Rd, Hammond, OR 97121
- Fort Stevens State Park near Astoria is a great place to take the dogs for a run, with over six miles of hiking trails
- You can drive onto the beach which is a huge bonus—and you’re actually on the Columbia River.
- Parking Lot D takes you to an “almost” private beach. Look for the turn before the actual parking lot.
- As the day goes on it can get crowded, but for the first few hours of the morning we typically have the beach to ourselves
Living in Portland for more than ten years, I’ve been able to explore endless beautiful state parks, and almost all of them offer places to hike with your dogs. These are just five that we’ve grown to love.
Travel Oregon has a wonderful video summarizing the 7 Wonders of Oregon and many of the dog-friendly hikes I mention are on this list!