Hoyt Arboretum

Portland, Oregon 97258

Hoyt Arboretum

Hoyt Arboretum Professional Review and Guide

"Located in Portland’s Washington Park, the Hoyt Arboretum is home to more than 2,000 species of trees and plants from all over the world. Far more than just a simple walk through a living museum of trees, there are 12 miles of hiking trails spread out over 189 acres. The paths wind through groups of trees including larch, spruce, oak, and even sequoia.

There is no charge to visit the arboretum, which features a visitor center staffed with highly knowledgeable volunteers. There is a research library, as well as an assortment of free maps and brochures. The arboretum is gorgeous. It’s also a labyrinth. To be honest, the odds of getting through a hike in this place for the first time without making a quizzical look at a trail junction are slim, even with a map. But the signage is excellent. and it would be difficult to become truly lost. Worst case scenario is that you accidentally add an extra mile or two to your outing."

More Hoyt Arboretum Professional Reviews and Guides

"This route travels through the spectacular 185-acre tree museum of Hoyt Arboretum in Southwest Portland. The path winds through a variety of forested ecosystems, including oak woodland, redwoods, and ponderosa pine forest. Hoyt Arboretum was founded in 1928, and the first trees were planted in the 1930s.

The arboretum has more than 5,000 labeled plants and trees that represent more than 1,100 different species. Before you start the hike be sure to stop in the visitor center (open 9:00 A.M. to 4:00 P.M. daily). This loop route takes you past several groups of tree species that are grouped by family. You’ll start off on the Oak Trail, which takes you through a sunny oak woodland filled with black oak, Japanese evergreen oak, and Konara oak."

"This route travels through the spectacular 185-acre tree museum of Hoyt Arboretum in Southwest Portland. The path winds through a variety of forested ecosystems, including oak woodland, redwoods, ponderosa pine forest, and an amazing grove of bamboo. Hoyt Arboretum was founded in 1928, and the first trees were planted in the 1930s. The arboretum has more than 5,000 labeled plants and trees that represent more than 1,100 different species. This loop route takes you past several groups of tree species that are grouped by family.You’ll start off on the Oak Trail, which takes you through a sunny oak woodland filled with black oak, Japanese evergreen oak, and Konara oak. The path then travels through an immense grove of Russian elm trees and transitions into a stately stand of ponderosa pines with a thick understory of sword fern and vine maple."

"Stroll through the largest assortment of conifers in the world and see various species of redwood, spruce, fir, cedar, and pine. The Hoyt Arboretum features more than 800 labeled species of trees and shrubs spread out over 175 acres.

There are 8 miles of trails within the arboretum itself, and some of these connect with other trails in Forest Park. Guided weekend nature walks are offered from April through October."

Hoyt Arboretum Reviews

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1/28/2012
We parked at the visitor center and stopped inside for a trail map. There are 1, 2 and 4 mile loop trail options. We chose to do the 4-mile hike. There are no tough trail sections to navigate here, only gentle slopes and meandering paths. The trail stays on top of the hills the entire time so that keeps it pretty easy. It's a good place for a hike without the hiking, if that makes sense. There is plenty of natural beauty here. I was particularly fond of the redwood grove with giant sequoia, coast redwood and douglas fir. There's even a nice viewing platform with benches to relax at and enjoy the surroundings. As we navigated our way through the maze of trails here, it became easy to get lost. We had our map but there are trail crossings seemingly every 50 feet and knowing exactly which way to turn was slightly annoying. We ultimately found our way but not without at least two unintentional detours. Back at the visitor center, we had a cup of hot tea before heading back to the car. All-in-all, it was an enjoyable experience. Glad to have this park so close to the city center. We'll definitely be back.
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1/3/2010
Beautiful hike, even on a drizzly day!! A little snow on the trail above Triple Falls, and a stream to cross within sight of the bridge turnaround point above Triple Falls. Still somewhat busy on the trail in spite of the season and weather. I took a friend visiting from out of town and she was duly impressed with the beauty of the area!
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7/20/2008
We started at Multnomah falls to Larch Mountain. We took a left and headed up up up to Franklin Ridge. With our map left on the dining room table we thought we might be lost and too far east until we finally came to the Oneonta trailhead market. (what a relief!) we hiked down with amazing views. Large Boulders, Huge trees and views to die for all the way down. We finally reached a few trailheads but stayed on Oneonta. After a few miles of all downhill hiking, we reached triple falls and horsetail falls trail head. Triple falls was beautiful but it was busy with people (Sunny Saturday afternoon) We reached Trail #400 and headed back to Multnomah falls. You hike up, down and on level ground. You reach the Scenic Columbia River Gorge Hwy at one point them jump back on trail. A few views are incredible. Mostly dirt trail and rock. Overall it was a beautiful hike, and the 12 mile loop was a great workout. -Salena Willner
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2/1/2008
A wonderful hike and, on this winter day, many icy parts of the trail, dictating use of a hiking staff or ski pole. So much to enjoy: Horsetail, Ponytail, Oneonta and Triple falls; Oneonta Gorge and Oneonta Creek, and a well-maintained trail. Although the hiking guidebooks call the trail Triple Falls, going to the bridge 5 minutes beyond is well worth while ... and continuing on past the bridge is a trail that matches and exceeds many others. Immediately across the bridge upstream from Triple Falls is a wonderfully flat backpacker site.
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5/23/2006
This trail gets off to a great start with a view of Horsetail Falls right near the parking area (which gets very crowded, so arrive early on busy days). The trail itself is about one-third switchback, so it requires moderate physical condition for its entire length. The vistas are beautiful, as with many Gorge trails, and the several waterfalls add to the scenic beauty. The trail is well-maintained, as are the bridges, and there are several natural rest areas along the way if you get tired. The trail's highlight is definitely the walk behind the Ponytail Falls in a natural cleft in the cliffside: extremely picturesque. The trail's only downside is that it's very popular and therefore crowded; solitude is not to be found.
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11/18/2005
An easy hike past several gorgeous waterfalls. Starting from Horsetail falls directly on the historic highway, this trail offers a spectacular sampler of what the gorge has to offer. After a short series of switchbacks, you reach Upper Horsetail falls which is actually a plunge falls. The trail goes under the falls and has a view out into the gorge from under the waterfall, nice. Proceeding onward the sounds of I-84 diminish as you head inland. Since I was there on a weekday, I had the trail wholly to myself. During a short switchback down to the first bridge, a nice angle of Oneonta Gorge can be seen off to the north. Heading onward and upward the trail climbs gently past several hard to see waterfalls before smacking directly into Triple Falls which I found particularly pleasing. After the falls, cross another bridge and head upward for another mile along the creek to the last bridge at 3.2 miles. Descending I ran into a few groups of people and once I heard the highway again I knew I wasn't far from the car. Overall a great hike, but is probably not so great during the tourist season.
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9/5/2004
This is a beautiful hike with great photo opportunities and numerous places to rest an relax in an amazing environment, but be careful when you go or you might as well go to the mall. I went over Labor Day Weekend, and it was busy, busy, busy; no wildlife, just people. Plan to go early in the morning or during the week.
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3/5/2003
One of the most fantastic things about this trail it that you get to walk behind Ponytail Falls, just like "Last of the Mohicans." Just enough uphill to make a beginner or moderate hiker feel tough, enough even ground to not give up. One of the most beautiful glimpses of the Nothwest's scenery that I have ever seen, with green mosses, a multitude of waterfalls and a rushing river. Very well maintained and the people encountered were pleasant. I would recommend this trail to everyone, no matter what level of hiking expertise.
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3/22/2002
This is one of my favorite hikes anywhere. Any time I'm in the Portland area I make sure to do at least some of this trail. Unless there are detours, the route is appropriate for most people in moderately good health. There are MANY waterfalls on this route, and it is possible to extend the hike further, emerging at Multnomah Falls. It is then a relatively short hike along the highway back to your car. (Check the maps at the trailhead or talk to a ranger for more info.) The trails are well maintained, even in winter, and I sometimes encounter rangers on my hikes. If you manage to go on a weekday, you will likely experience little other traffic, even in summer, except near the major falls by the highway.
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Hoyt Arboretum Photos

Trail Information

Portland
Nearby City
Dog-friendly
Accessibility
3.2
Distance
Loop/Lollipop
Trail Type
Easy
Skill Level
Year-round
Season
City of Portland, Parks & Recreation, (503) 823-6007; portlandoregon.gov/parks/
Local Contacts
Oregon Road & Recreation Atlas: Page 106 D4
Local Maps

Activity Feed

Nov 2018