Pets allowed
Elevation Gain
700.00 ft (213.36 m)
Trail type
3.80 mi (6.12 km)
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.

The Misery Ridge Trail in Smith Rock State Park is an exceptional day hike that provides a full tour of one of Oregon's most iconic natural areas.  From the trailhead, the trail descends into the Crooked River Gorge, crosses the park's only bridge, and then starts the climb to the top of the park's golden rock cliffs.  As you make your way through the switchbacks, watch the ground for sunbathing reptiles, and look for golden eagle aeries on the northern cliff walls.  Once you've reached the summit, roughly 700 feet above the river, you'll have a close view of the famous Monkey Face formation, and on clear days the Cascades are visible from Mount Jefferson to Broken Top.  Take the western route on your return to connect with the Mesa Verde Trail.  You'll pass Monkey Face and eventually connect with the River Trail to make a full loop out of the adventure. 

Mid-summer temperatures can become sweltering, so you may wish to avoid the mid-day sun.  Also, note that the only camping in the park is the walk-in camping at Bivouac Campground.

Logistics + Planning

Preferable season(s)




Parking Pass

State Park Fee


Panoramic views. Relatively short. Nearby camping.


Summer heat.

Trailhead Elevation

2,880.00 ft (877.82 m)


Rock climbing
Bird watching
Big vistas

Typically multi-day




Spring is an ideal time to hike this trail, before the unbearable heat and everything has turned completely brown.
A challenging, but rewarding hike up and over one of the steepest areas in the park.
Caught a group slacklining into the Monkey Face. All the snow at Smith Rock is fully melted and even when still in the low 60s it felt toasty out there.
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