Tom McCall Preserve

Tom McCall Preserve

  • Easy (to plateau ponds)
  • 2.2 miles round trip
  • 300 feet elevation loss
  • Open all year


  • Moderate (to McCall Point)
  • 3.4 miles round trip
  • 1100 feet elevation gain
  • Open May 1 to October 30

This cliff-edged plateau of oak grasslands and wildflowers is one of the Nature Conservancy’s most dramatic preserves. The conservancy is a non-profit private organization that quietly purchases ecologically sensitive land. Their preserve here has two trails. A path easy enough for children explores several ponds on a lower plateau overlooking the Columbia River, while a steeper trail climbs to the breathtaking mountain viewpoint atop McCall Point.

The best time to visit this dry eastern end of the Columbia Gorge is spring, when flowers dot the slopes. Grass widows are at their showiest in mid March, while yellow balsamroot and blue lupine peak in early May. Avoid the heat of July and August. And remember to wear long pants if you’re taking the upper trail, as it passes poison oak. Take Interstate...Other Options Adventurers who don’t want to turn back at McCall Point can …

This chapter taken from the book 100 Hikes/Travel Guide: Northwest Oregon & Southwest Washington.