An icon of northern Oregon, Mount Hood towers in the distance from the streets of Portland and surrounding towns. Summer or winter, the mountain, and its scattered villages offer your family a place to enjoy nature. Spend a day skiing, hiking or biking before heading back to a vacation rental to watch the stars and listen to the sounds of the forest. The area also offers access to horseback riding, fishing, golfing, kayaking and rock climbing to satisfy the different interests of your family members. Here are ten of the most popular locations to look for the perfect Mount Hood vacation rental.
1. Mount Hood Village
Enjoy a few nights or a week-long getaway with the family in a mountain cabin, yurt or large chalet in Mount Hood Village. The village makes an ideal jumping-off point for hiking, skiing or relaxing on the shore of a lake to take in the beauty of the mountain. After a long day outside, wander over to Rebel & Rye Public House for a family meal and to sample some of Oregon’s finest craft beers, ciders, and spirits.
2. Government Camp
Located further up Mount Hood than any other village, Government Camp is the located near all three ski areas in the mountains. In fact, from many vacation rentals in the village, you can walk to chairlifts at Mount Hood Skibowl. During the summer, the Skibowl doubles as a mountain biking park. Your family can also rent kayaks or arrange a whitewater rafting adventure at the Mount Hood Adventure Park, which is located at Skibowl. The Adventure Park also has an 800-foot long zip line to test your family’s nerves.
Located just up Highway 26 from Mount Hood Village, Welches provides quick access to the area’s many trails. The Salmon River Trail offers a relaxing place to stroll and contemplate the forest. During the winter, take a short drive up the mountain to reach the slopes. For the golfer in your family, the village boasts the Courses at the Resort at the Mountain and the Three Nines Golf Course.
Located further down the mountain than most of the other villages, Brightwood features vacation rentals along the highway or the Sandy River, ideal for building a fire and watching the stars. Take a break from hiking for a round of miniature golf at Mountain Air Miniature Golf.
Explore the peaceful trails and wetlands of the Wildwood Recreation Site with ease with a nearby rental. In addition to trails, the Recreation Site has picnic shelters, athletic fields and courts, and fire rings. The area also provides convenient access to swimming and fishing in the Salmon River.
Set between Mount Hood Village and Government Camp, Rhododendron lets you explore the adventures and amenities of all three villages with ease. Grab a diner-style breakfast at the Still Creek Inn to start your day, then head out for a horseback riding adventure, a day at the snowboard half-pipe, or lake crossing on a paddleboard, which you can rent at the Skibowl Adventure Park.
Tucked in the middle of the villages along Highway 26, many vacation rentals in Wemme offer views of Mount Hood or the Sandy River. The village’s central location makes it ideal to explore the restaurants and shops up and down the highway. Rent a canoe or kayak at a local outfitter to explore the lakes in the National Forest.
Zigzag is an ideal jumping off point to the trails to the northwest of Mount Hood, as well as to the upper Sandy River and Bull Run Lake. Architectural buffs are sure to appreciate the numerous rustic log buildings in Zigzag, including the ranger station, which was built in 1935. The nearby Sandy Ridge Trail offers 13 miles of downhill mountain biking trails.
9. Parkdale – Mount Hood
For a slightly more distant view of Mount Hood, stay in Parkdale or Mount Hood, which lie about a 45-minute drive northeast of the mountain villages. Enjoy a pint with a view at Solera Brewing, which features a beer garden with an epic vista of Mount Hood. The Mount Hood Meadows ski and snowboard park, located on the east side of the mountain, is only half an hour from Parkdale. In addition to downhill slopes, the park features Nordic cross-country and snowshoeing trails. During the summer, enroll your children in a three-day adventure camp at the park, where they can enjoy mountain biking, hiking, chairlift rides and whitewater rafting.
10. Hood River
Pair the grandeur of Mount Hood with the magnificence of the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area by finding a vacation rental in Hood River. Make the hour drive up to the slopes on the mountain, before returning to watch the ships and windsurfers on the river from the Hood River Waterfront Park. Satisfy the history buff in your family with a visit to the Western Antique Aeroplane and Automobile Museum. Numerous local wineries provide temptation to slip away from the kids for few hours.