- Where to stay: The Resort at the Mountain offers 4-star accommodations in Welches, and depending on the time of year, rooms can be found for around $170.
- Where to eat: Mt. Hood Brewing Co. is the number one rated restaurant on Tripadvisor and offers both beer and pub food. Ratskeller, which is just down the road from Mt. Hood Brewing Co., also features American fare (and lots of pizza) for a reasonable price.
- Directions from Portland: Trillium Lake is 60 miles from downtown Portland via US-26 E. Take this highway until you hit the turn off for NF-2656, where you’ll take a right. Follow the NF-2656 for 1.4 miles, then take a sharp right and two lefts, making sure to follow the signage for Trillium.
- Check the weather in Welches right now.
- Where to stay: Timberline Lodge offers historic accommodations in Government Camp, and depending on the time of year, rooms can be found for around $150.
- Where to eat: Ram’s Head Bar is a ten mile drive from Buzzard Point (and conveniently located inside Timberline Lodge) and offers a gorgeous view of Mt. Hood and plenty of artisan Oregon cheese. If you’re looking for more of an adventure, you can eat at Mazot Eatery, which is located on Mt. Hood, and hosts the best sandwich/beer combo you’ll ever eat.
- Directions from Portland: Buzzard Point Trail is 62 miles from downtown Portland via US-26 E. Take this highway until you hit the OR-35 in Government Camp. Follow the OR-35 until you hit the State Route 35 N exit. Finally, continue on OR-35 N for 3.3 miles to Buzzard Point.
- Check the weather in Government Camp right now.
- Where to stay: For a more authentic Oregon experience, you can rent Wy’east Nest, a personal log cabin just off of Timberline Trail for under $100 a night.
- Where to eat: Glacier Public House offers pizza, wings and beer that will be much appreciated after an all-day hike.
- Directions from Portland: Timberline Trail is 65 miles outside of downtown Portland via the US-26 E. You’ll take the US-26 E until it ends and continue onto E Lolo Pass Rd. Drive to NF-1811 in Mount Hood where you’ll see signs for Timberline Trail #600.
- Check the weather in Timberline Trail right now.
- Where to stay: Sandy is pretty remote, so you can choose to stay in one of the local motels, like Best Western, or opt for a nicer option like Courtyard by Marriott in nearby Clackamas.
- Where to eat: AntFarm Cafe and Bakery is a nonprofit dedicated to youth in the Sandy community and just so happens to serve some of the best American food around. Definitely make sure to hit Joe’s Donut Shop on your way home which has been a local hotspot since the 70s and not much has changed.
- Directions from Portland: Jonsrud Viewpoint is 28 miles from downtown Portland via the I-84 E. From the I-84 E take exit 14 for Fairview Parkway and take a right. Then, turn left onto NE Glisan St. Next, turn right onto NE 223rd Ave., then left onto NW Fairview Dr., then left onto NE Burnside Rd. Continue straight onto US-26 E, turn left onto SE Kelso Rd, turn right onto SE Bluff Rd. and the Jonsrud Viewpoint will be on your right. Careful not to miss it.
- Check the weather in Sandy right now.
photo by Ron and Patty Thomas via iStock
I vividly remember my first Mount Hood sighting. As someone from southern California, large, breathtaking mountains aren’t really a norm for us and Mount Hood is, simply put, one of the most gorgeous things I’ve ever seen.
If you’re looking to take photos of Mount Hood, you’ve come to the right place. You want to make sure to hit all of the iconic Mount Hood photography spots, but you’ll also want to see views of Mount Hood that only the locals know about.
Thankfully, I’ve spent a lot of time photographing Mount Hood and have picked up some Mount Hood photography tips along the way.
Here are some of my favorite spots for taking photos of Mount Hood.
photo by Nick Wiltgen via iStock
If you’ve ever seen photos of Mount Hood over a large lake, chances are that was Trillium Lake. Trillium Lake is one of the best Mount Hood photography spots for a clear, windless day. This way, you’ll be able to get that mirror reflection of Mount Hood you’re looking for.
If you can, take your trip in spring when the namesake Trilliums bloom.
photo by lhongfoto via iStock
While you don’t need to do so to get great views of Mount Hood, if you can, rent a boat and take it out onto the lake. It’s the safest way to ensure you don’t get any tourists in your photos. It also gives you the freedom to take as many photos of Mount Hood as your heart desires, since you won’t be fighting any crowds.
photo by jose1983 via iStock
Buzzard Point is located just off of the original Mount Hood Highway. It used to be used as a natural water source for travellers, but now acts as a less-travelled trail for photographers.
It’s a 4-mile round trip hike to get to Buzzard Point, but you’ll have breathtaking views of Mount Hood for the duration of the hike, so you can take it as slowly as you want to.
As you can see in this video by Adventures with Gumjuwak, this is not a trail you want to do in the winter time unless you come over-prepared.
photo by Kyle_Hittner via iStock
Timberline Trail will allow you to get the best photos of Mount Hood of any of these Mount Hood photography spots with one catch, it’s a 40-mile trail.
While you obviously don’t need to do the entire trail to get the photos of Mount Hood you want to, I do recommend you go as far as you feel comfortable, since the trail wraps around the base of Mount Hood so the farther you go, the more views you’ll see.
You can see some of the views of Mount Hood in this video by AdventureArchives. Plus, if you get tired of taking photos of Mount Hood along this trail, you’ll also find stunning views of the Cascade volcanoes, Portland from a distance, and the Columbia River.
As you can see in the stunning video above by Oregon’s Mt. Hood Territory, Jonsrud Viewpoint provides views of Mount Hood from a distance that very few ever capture.
Jonsrud Viewpoint is located in Sandy, Oregon, which is less than 30 miles from downtown Portland making it the perfect day trip.
The problem with grabbing beautiful photos of Mount Hood from Jonsrud Viewpoint is that, as the locals say, you need to grab them while “the Mountain is out.” Oregon’s always stormy weather lends problems for photographers who only have a day or two for their Mount Hood photography.
However, as you can see in this video by Clifford Paguio, the Jonsrud Viewpoint is gorgeous in and of itself, even if you don’t manage to snap those photos of Mount Hood you came for.
Bonus Tip: Take an Oregon Photography Tour
Many of these Mount Hood photography spots are dangerous if you get caught in inclement weather and don’t know your way around the area (especially the hikes). If it’s your first time to the area, you may feel more comfortable taking an all-inclusive photography tour, like the ones offered by ColorTexturePhotoTours.
Their next tour is coming up in October, from October 4th-9th, and will include some of the locations I discussed above, as well as other state parks and waterfalls in the area outside of Portland.
I work with Color Texture Photo Tours because they ensure every one of their trips is a unique and personal experience. For instance, their Oregon Fall Colors photo tour is only accepting 4 photographers to keep the experience as intimate as possible. Believe me when I say that fewer participants is better! You get much more one-on-one time with the tour leader and it’s a great environment for getting to know your tour mates and forming lifelong friendships.
Plus, the cost of the trip includes all of your hotels, all of your meals, personalized photography advice, and private transportation. All you need to worry about is getting gorgeous photos of Mount Hood!
There is simply no better way to explore this area than with a private photography tour. Head over to ColorTexturePhotoTours today to see what Scott and his team have in store for you!