We love it here! So much in fact that Todd suggested I not blog about it 😉 I couldn’t resist though…it’s hard not to want to share photos of such a beautiful place.
Nottingham Campground is a place that we scoped out last year while we were exploring Mt. Hood. It is quite secluded and very primitive with no drinking water at all. It does however, boast some of the most beautiful scenery on the mountain. Like McNeil, this campground is also first come first serve which suits us well this time of year since we don’t plan ahead and most campgrounds are booked solid for the weekends.
We left on a Thursday night to ensure that we’d get a spot. We were lucky, and had we waited until Friday, we would have been out of luck! We were fortunate to come across a site right on the river. There are several river sites, but most of them are best suited for tent campers. We were able to situate our tiny trailer into a very tight spot with an amazing view! One of the benefits of a 16ft trailer.
Another benefit to this campground is cell phone service is within just a five minute drive. To me that is very important. We still have an 18 year old son living at home and I sleep better at night knowing where he’s going to be, and knowing that he makes it home safely. Silly (according to his dad) since he is good kid and he’ll be leaving for college in just a few weeks, but still, I sleep better!
The single drawback this time of year is dust! I’m assuming it is river erosion and glacial sediment but I’ve seen another website state that perhaps it was from an ancient eruption of Mt. Hood – that certainly sounds more exciting. The dust in itself wouldn’t be a huge problem if drivers on the gravel road would just slow down a bit. Cars go roaring by and it takes some time for the dust to clear. I ended up keeping our front window shut to keep the kicked up silt out of the trailer.
Another note about this campground is that it is located at 3400 ft. and it does get cold at night! Although we hit daytime temps of nearly 90 each day, it got below freezing at night. I was glad I still had our down blanket packed!
Nottingham Campground is a great base to explore the East side of the Mountain. Lost Lake, a beautiful alpine lake is just a 40 minute drive. The drive itself is worth it, as it winds you through the fertile Hood River Valley known for apple and pear crops.
Lost Lake is home to one of the largest campgrounds in the state of Oregon. It was full this weekend which left us wondering if it was worth the drive up. We were pleasantly surprised. Although it is very busy around the little lodge area, the rest of the lake is quiet. There is a nice 3.5 mile hike around the lake and even on the busiest of weekends it was still serene.
This special place is just an hour and half out of Portland. It’s the perfect place for a weekend out. I’m sure we’ll be back several more times before the season ends!!