What better way to spend a Sunday afternoon than go for a hike up a mountain? That’s what we decided to do this Sunday, and Tumalo Mountain has been on our bucket list since moving to Bend, Oregon.
We rarely go on a hike these days without our dog Story, and this time we got a chance to try out the new GoPro dog harness my sister got me for my Birthday. Story became our hiking videographer and she took the job seriously.
Tumalo Mountain is about 20 minutes outside of Bend, Oregon. It is a part of the Cascade Mountain range in Central Oregon with an elevation of 7,779 ft.
What to Expect Hiking Tumalo Mountain
Even though the Tumalo Mountain Summit Trail is only 2 miles long one way, don’t let that fool you! It was a steady uphill 2-mile hike covering over 1400 feet of elevation. While it’s not a strenuous hike, I wouldn’t consider it a leisurely trail either.
It look us about 1 hour to summit the top of Tumalo Mountain. We then spent about 15 minutes walking around at the summit enjoying the views of the surrounding Cascade Mountain Range and the Deschutes National Forest. We then took the downhill hike back down to the trailhead in about 45 minutes, overall making it about a 2-hour roundtrip hike.
We completed this hike in the middle of September and there was no snow on the ground. The best time to summit Tumalo Mountain is August, as you may run into snow on the ground up until the end of July. The weather was a little chilly for us in September so I could see how it would be a great late summer hike.
My favorite part of the hike was being so close to Mt. Bachelor and seeing the great views of it across the way.
How to Get There
The Tumalo Mountain Summit Trailhead is located about 20 minutes outside of Bend, Oregon. Take the Cascade Lakes Highway for 19 miles. You will see the Sunrise Lodge entrance on the left and immediately after you pass that you will see the Dutchman Flats SnoPark parking lot on the right. The trailhead is marked with a sign and the trail is clearly marked all the way to the top.
What to Bring
The packing list for the Tumalo Mountain Summit will depend on the month you go, but in general here are some must-bring items:
- Hiking shoes
- Layers of clothing (I had on a T-shirt, long-sleeve zip-up, and fleece. I ended up taking off my fleece about halfway up but was glad I had it at the summit).
- Camera or Go Pro
- Water. I would recommend about 2 litres per person and extra if bringing your dog
This is definitely a hike I would recommend. It’s a pretty quick hike, easy to get to, and the views are spectacular.
What’s the best hike you’ve done lately?