Just a stone's throw from the Columbia River along the border between Oregon and Washington, the Hudson-Parcher Park Campground nestles in the forested hills of Columbia County. It lies along the banks of Beaver Creek and is a popular setting for fishing, hiking, canoeing, and birding.RV camping at the Hudson-Parcher Park Campground includes access to 25 RV sites, with ten of these offering electric and water connections. There are flush toilets and hot showers for campers to utilize, as well as picnic tables and fire rings to keep you warm during the cooler months.Kids can take advantage of the three playgrounds at the RV park, not to mention a soccer field and basketball court. There’s also a day cabin with cooking facilities that can cater to large groups. Hiking trails wind through the surrounding temperate forest, which is dominated by Douglas firs, big-leaf maples, and native ferns.
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Less than an hour’s drive west of the Hudson-Parcher Park Campground is the Clatsop State Forest, a working forest that’s managed by the Astoria District of the Oregon Department of Forestry. It’s crisscrossed by several hiking trails, including the Bloom Lake Trail and the Steam Donkey Trail, which follows part of an old railroad grade once used to haul logs. If you’re visiting during the summer months, you can cool off after your walk with a swim in the Nehalem River, while horse riders can saddle up for a leisurely ride from the Northrup Creek Horse Camp.Adjacent to the Clatsop State Forest is the Saddle Mountain State Natural Area, a picturesque wilderness area within the Northern Oregon Coast Range. It’s home to a herd of resident elk that can sometimes be spotted along its trails, which include the 2.5-mile-long route that leads to the summit of Saddle Mountain. It offers superb views towards the Pacific Ocean on a clear day, as well as taking in the rugged peaks of the Cascade Mountains.The Hudson-Parcher Park Campground can also be used as a base for exploring the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area, which stretches for more than 80 miles along the border between Oregon and Washington. It encompasses diverse landscapes that range from temperate rainforest to dry grassland while plunging to a depth of up to 4,000 feet at several points. Follow the Historic Columbia River Highway to see its spectacular waterfalls or get active while hiking and mountain biking along the gorge trails.
Campsites at the Hudson-Parcher Park Campground are just seven minutes’ drive from Rainier, where you can pick up grocery supplies in one of the local supermarkets. There are also gas stations here if you need to fill up your RV rental, not to mention cafes, pizzerias, and Mexican restaurants if you feel like a night off from cooking. Alternatively, you can make the 15-minute drive across the border into Washington and the city of Longview, which offers a wider choice of supermarkets, services, and restaurants.While you’re in Longview, don’t miss a visit to the Nutty Narrows Bridge, a squirrel bridge that holds the title of being the “World’s Narrowest Animal Crossing.” It was established in the 1960s to assist squirrels in crossing the busy thoroughfare and was listed on the National Register of Historic Places in 2014.Camping at the Hudson-Parcher Park Campground is also a good base for exploring Portland, which lies just over an hour’s drive to the south. It’s renowned for its urban parks, including sprawling Washington Park, which is home to several memorials, children’s play areas, and themed gardens. Soak up the tranquility of the Japanese garden and enjoy the fragrance of the rose garden, then learn about forests around the globe at the World Forestry Center Discovery Museum. Also within the park is the Portland Children’s Museum and the Oregon Zoo, home to big-game wildlife species such as elephants and tigers.If you’re after a cultural fix, stop in at the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry, which is home to the USS Blueback submarine that appeared in the 1990 film, The Hunt for Red October. Also of note is the Portland Art Museum, renowned for its extensive collection of Native American, Asian, and American works. Directly across the street from the Portland Art Museum is the Oregon Historical Society Museum, which details the state’s rich history through a fascinating collection of photographs, artifacts, and maps. A highlight is the famous Portland Penny, the actual coin that was tossed in 1845 to decide the city’s name.Whether you want to see the waterfalls of the Columbia River Gorge or get cultured in Portland, book an RV rental in Columbia County and start planning your next vacation.