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A spectacular park in the Columbia River Gorge, Memaloose State Park offers a relaxing and beautiful vacation destination for campers of all ages. Located in Mosier, roughly an hour and a half east of Portland, this 441-acre park is a landscape of tall trees, beautiful river views, and peaceful surroundings.
It boasts a shady campground with 43 full-hookup sites and easy access to a wide range of nearby attractions. So if you're planning to head east out of Portland and explore the historic Columbia River Highway, make sure you add Memaloose State Park to the list of destinations worth visiting along the way.
Memaloose is a relatively small park, so it doesn't offer the same abundance of recreational activities as some other state parks. However, don't let that fool you into thinking that there's nothing to do here.
The highlight for most Memaloose State Park campers is, without a doubt, the beautiful riverside location. You can enjoy gorgeous vistas of the Columbia River from the park, which is also home to a pleasant array of towering maples and willows. These provide plenty of cool shade in the summer months, and sitting down for a picnic lunch here while you take in the views of the river below is very relaxing indeed.
Unfortunately, there's no river access available at Memaloose State Park. Mayer State Park is just over five minutes further east, features a boat launching ramp, and is well known as a popular fishing spot. In the opposite direction, the Port of Hood River is around 15 minutes away and also features a public boat launch. Whether you're looking to go fishing, kayaking, or stand-up paddleboarding, this is the ideal place to get out on the water.
Memaloose State Park also has plenty to recommended it to bike riders. The park sits right next to the Historic Columbia River Highway State Trail, which stretches for 12 miles and includes abandoned sections of the famous highway. Riders who tackle this route are rewarded with spectacular views of the Columbia River Gorge, so it's well worth remembering to pack your bicycle before you leave home.
Of course, if you prefer to take things easy and enjoy life at a slower pace, you might just want to sit back and soak up the beautiful ambiance the park has to offer. Whether that means admiring the river by day or gazing up at shooting stars in the clear night sky, you'll find plenty to enjoy.
If you want to camp with an RV at Memaloose State Park, search for a rental RV in Wasco County and then reserve a site in the park's pretty campground. Open for tent and RV camping from early March through the end of October, this campground is set in leafy surroundings and offers some lovely views of the Columbia River.
There are 43 RV sites with 30-amp electrical, water, and sewer hookups, including some sites capable of accommodating large RV rentals. Each site gets its own picnic table and fire ring with cooking grate, while the restrooms and showers are clean and relatively modern. There's also a dump station provided for added convenience.
The Memaloose State Park campground also features 66 tent sites with water nearby, and leashed pets are more than welcome on your site. Just make sure your pooch is leashed, attended to at all times and that you clean up after them whenever necessary.
However, there is one issue that campers should be aware of before visiting the park: due to the proximity of the campground to I-84, you can expect to notice a little traffic noise while staying here.
When you're ready to get out and explore the area surrounding Memaloose State Park, you're spoiled for choice. No matter which direction you travel, you'll find plenty of great attractions within easy reach.
For example, if you follow the Columbia River 40 minutes to the west, you'll come to Ainsworth State Park, which is famous for its great hiking and spectacular waterfalls.
If you decide to head into Washington and towards the city of Yakima, you'll soon find yourself in wine country. There are over 120 wineries in the Yakima Valley area — Bonair Winery is particularly charming — so you'll need to leave plenty of time to sample the best of them.
Of course, if you'd rather head for the big city, Portland is just an hour and a half away. While you're there, don't forget to visit the spectacular Lan Su Chinese Garden.
When you rent a camper near Memaloose State Park, you'll find plenty of activities, attractions, and experiences to fill your travel itinerary. There's so much to see and do in this part of the world, so stop reading and get out there and enjoy it.