Pets allowed
Allowed
Guided tours
No
Backcountry camping
No
Lodging
No
Please respect the outdoors by practicing Leave No Trace. Learn more about how to apply the principles of Leave No Trace on your next outdoor adventure here.

On the eastern edge of Portland is a spectacular nature park rich with history that is all too often overlooked.

Originally called Camp Butte after the family who settled it, this long extinct cinder cone has been used for agricultural purposes since 1880 when it was an orchard and cattle ranch.  In 1908 the Anderegg family, emigrants from Switzerland, took over the property and with their roughly 700 head of dairy cows ran the Mountain View Dairy, a name that would later changed to Meadowland Dairy.  In 1925 the City of Portland purchased much of the land encompassing the butte for a future water reservoir, but continued to lease the land back to the family for pasturing until 1948 when the dairy closed.  Later, in 1960, the butte was renamed to Powell Butte, but apparently most of the locals still referred to it as Anderegg Hill.  It wasn't until 1990 that the public could come to visit what is now the Powell Butte Nature Park.

Today, the 608-acre park is home to some 9 miles of trails, open meadows, remnants of the once commercial orchard, and distinct old-growth temperate forest on the butte's western edge.  Be sure to get on the Pioneer Orchard Loop Trail to see the most of what the park has to offer.  The park is open to use by horseback, and unlike its west-side cousin Forest Park, Powell Butte Nature Park is friendly to mountain bikers.

Note: The Portland Water Bureau continues expansion and retrofitting of it's reservoir on the park's east side, so expect some trail closures or re-routes.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)

Winter
Spring
Summer
Fall

Congestion

High

Parking Pass

Not Required

Pros

Panoramic vistas. Old-growth forest. Grassy meadows.

Cons

Construction of municipal reservoir.

Features

Historically significant
Flushing toilets
Mountain biking
Old-growth forest

Location

Field Guide + Map

Nearby Lodging + Camping

Comments

03/29/2013
We parked at the end of Raymond Street and took Elderberry Trail up to Orchard Loop Trail and then back. Along Elderberry Trail is a small horse pasture, with a friendly horse that came up to the fence to say hi. Loved seeing all of the trillium this time of year, and also spotted some scarlet elf cup! Great hike for sure.
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