7 Best Birdwatching Hikes in Oregon

7 Best Birdwatching Hikes in Oregon

Oregon is home to over 500 species of unique birds across its beaches, forests, deserts, and mountains. Whether you’ve always wanted to see a majestic hawk in person or you dream about catching a glimpse of a super-rare species, these seven incredible birdwatching hikes in Oregon will surely help you out. 

1. Crater Lake National Park

Situated in the breathtaking Cascade Mountains, Crater Lake National Park is a true sight to see. Birds that can be spotted at Crater Lake include ruffed grouse, Clark’s nutcracker, gray jay, white-headed woodpecker, and much more. Next time you visit, consider bringing along the bird checklist provided by the Crater Lake Institute. This list will tell you which birds are in the park and in which seasons they are commonly spotted. 

2. Clyde Holliday State Recreation Site, Mount Vernon, OR

The Clyde Holliday State Recreation includes a nature trail along the river, providing a perfect location to take in the waterfowl, warblers, buntings, sparrows, and more. Consider spending the night at one of their many campsites, as well. 

3. Audubon Society of Portland Sanctuary, Portland, OR

The Audubon Society of Portland runs an impressive, 150-acre nature sanctuary. It’s free to visit, and features four miles of hiking trails with Steller’s jay, chestnut-backed chickadees, and much more.

This is a very polite owl I met that one time. #owl

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4. Cape Meares National Wildlife Refuge, Tillamook, OR

Cape Meares, known for its gorgeous lighthouse, is a national wildlife refuge on the Oregon coast. The spot has several trails, including the Oregon Coast Trail, which runs through the center of the refuge. Tons of different bird species stick close to the coast, making for great watching.

5. Cottonwood Canyon State Park, Wasco, OR

Cottonwood Canyon is another fantastic state park in Oregon. It’s the second largest in the state, providing plenty of opportunity for keen-eyed birdwatchers to find hawks, eagles, orioles, and more.

Juvenile White-Crowned Sparrow.

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6. Fort Stevens State Park, Hammond, OR

Fort Stevens State Park on the Columbia River is a history buff go-to, as Fort Stevens, on-site, was in use from the Civil War to World War II. Today, the 4,300-acre park has many scenic hiking trails with views of many rare bird species.

7. Indian Ford Campground, Sisters, OR

The Indian Ford Campground in Deschutes County has many hiking and biking trails and is known for its excellent birdwatching. For the best views, take to the northern or western wetlands. You’ll find a variety of warblers here, from orange-crowned to yellow-rumped, as well as several species of woodpecker from white-headed to northern flicker.   

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