Smith Rock State Park is one of Oregon's Seven Wonders. Situated just outside of Terrebonne in Central Oregon, Smith Rock became popular amongst rock climbers. It soon gained attention in the trail running crowd. Then, pretty much anyone and everyone wanted to see it. With some of the best sport climbing in the country, a trail called Misery Ridge and endless trail running it's an athletes oasis in central Oregon. With a river running through, it is home and a stop during migration for many. Most importantly it is home to the local otters and if you are lucky you will get to see them playing around on a hot day.
Hike Misery Ridge at Smith Rock State Park
There is so much to do here that if you only have a day, or less than a day, it's hard to choose. If you are not there to climb, then the most popular and in my opinion, best hike is Misery Ridge. At 6 miles and 1774' in elevation gain it is a great challenge for all. Your reward are the breathtaking views from the top and to be able to say you finished the Misery Ridge loop.
This hike is not for everyone. There are challenging areas. Even to get to the trail head from the parking lot has a slightly steep service road that goes down to the start. The beginning of the hike starts at a bridge that will cross you over the river and then you have a choice. Start with a leisurely hike along the river, or start with a climb. Either way, you will have an ascent and a descent and both are equally challenging.
We have hiked both ways and enjoy them equally. Let's have you go the leisurely way first. Get a little warm up and some beautiful views.
You can't miss the turn to get to misery ridge. Look for Monkey Face (a very popular climb for rock climbers) and veer right.
Prepare yourself for the climb here. It is steep and it doesn't end until you get to the top but once you get to the top. When the switchbacks are over make sure to stop and get a glimpse of what you just climbed and the view.
You are very close to the top and will be able to find the best view of central Oregon.
As you make your way back down, enjoy yourself and the experience you just had. Once you get to the bottom you can see the start of heading up to misery ridge first.
Climbing in Smith Rock State Park
If you came here to climb, don't worry you will always find a route. With thousands of options, get there early to claim your spot. Make sure to read about their closures throughout the year for eagles.
Dogs at Smith Rock State Park
They are allowed, but make sure to read about the rules. Different rules for hiking with dogs and climbing with dogs.
Camping At Smith Rock State Park
There is a tent campground that lines the ridge that views misery ridge. There is also boondocking within 15 miles of the state park and other campgrounds.
Parking at Smith Rock State Park
There are actually three different parking lots. Most bee line for the main parking that is parallel to the park entrance. There is another parking area past that. Most people seem to drive right by the first parking area on the left. This parking lot has a few spots for larger RVs if you get there earlier enough before the cars take them. Vans will line most of the areas.
All the information you need you can find here: Smith Rock State Park