The Beauty of Smith Rock State Park

The Beauty of Smith Rock State Park


Address: Terrebonne, OR 97760, United States

Phone number: 541-548-7501

Acreage: 651.68

Day-use: Fee

Annual Pass: 24 month pass $5, $30, $50

GPS Coordinates: N 44 21.952 W 121 08.233

Smith Rock State Park is one of the pearls of Oregon State. Located on the banks of Crooked River, it spreads over the territory of 615 acres. Oregon State received the lands of this state park in the time period of 1960 – 1975 (some of them were donated, and some were bought by the state). Since then this incredible state park of Central Oregon has been greeting its visitors with enormously huge rock spires and stone walls, most of which are comprised of welded tuff and volcanic ash compressed and solidified throughout millions of years, covered with a little bit younger layer of basalt. The beautiful spikes of this “stone cathedrals” rise up in the sky for more than 550 feet.

Being a top-site for the climbers with a couple of thousand routes having different levels of complexity, Smith Rock State Park is actually a place where the United States’ sport-climbing was born in 1986. The park offers its guests a broad range of various activities among which are hiking, trail running, mountain biking, slackline walking, horseback riding and of course climbing.

If you plans are to spend only one day in the park, be sure it will be not enough to explore the whole state park. Numerous trails meandering throughout the park will take you into a marvelous journey allowing you to learn the flora and fauna of this exceptional place. The bird-lovers will surely enjoy the hikes as they may admire ducks and geese swimming in the river and splashing near its banks, as well as prairie falcons, northern harriers and bald eagles soaring in the sky. And this is just a short list of birds you can meet there.

For those who are willing to spend several days at Smith Rock State Park, there is a year-round camping area called Bivouac Area, or the Bivy, but it is designated only for tents. Unfortunately there is no possibility for overnight in vehicles or trailers at the territory belonging to this state park, but for this you may use one of the campgrounds and RV parks, located nearby.

Near the Bivouac Area parking lot there are restrooms and showers (which are free for those, registered at the Bivy, and the use of showers for those, who are not registered there will cost $2). There is also a recharging station at the territory of the park (located near the public sink area) – a gift from an anonymous donator.

Please mind that dogs are allowed at the territory of Smith Rock State Park only on a leash. And administration of the park strongly urges the visitors to stay on the trails in order not to damage the fragile soil of the park and its vegetation.

The park is open all the year round but designated for day-use only. The best season for visiting is considered to be autumn and spring, as in summer the heat over 100°F can make your visit less comfortable, and in winter the freezing temperatures may prevent you from taking pleasure in all the activities offered by the park.
To learn more about Smith Rock State Park you may visit its website: http://smithrock.com/

Directions:

The park is easy to find as it is located at the distance of about 20 minutes drive from Redmond, and approximately 3 hours drive from Oregon. And it is only 3 miles away from the small town of Terrebonne. To get there you should go east from Hwy 97 taking Smith Rock Drive in Terrebonne, then on 17th Street take a left turn, and a right turn on Wilcox Avenue. The last left turn should be taken on Crooked River Drive, which will lead you to the state park’s parking lot.

Photo: Roman Khomlyak

Photo Editing: Juliana Voitsikhovska

Information: Svetlana Baranova

Pictures taken: 09/2/16

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