Smith Rock's Misery Ridge Loop

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Smith Rock's Misery Ridge Loop

Distance: 9.8km
Elevation: 304m
Time: 2.5-3.5h

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The most popular hike in Smith Rock State Park, the Misery Ridge Trail takes hikers and sightseers to one of the highest points in the park with incredible views. It’s easy to see why this walk is so popular.

Getting there

Head north from Bend along US-97 for 38.6km.  At Terrebonne, turn right onto Smith Rock Way, following signs for Smith Rock State Park.  Turn left onto Lambert Road and follow this for 3.2km, before turning left onto Crooked River Drive.  Park near the visitor center.

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When to do

Year Round

Backcountry Campsites



At trailhead

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Detailed Description

From the Visitor Center, descend to and then cross over the Crooked River. Directly across the bridge will be the Misery Ridge Trail. Start on this trail and begin the challenging, switch-backing climb up to Misery Ridge.

As you switchback you will soon arrive at Red Wall, a popular place for avid climbers. Peer upwards and see them ascending the incredibly steep face, holding onto the tiniest of holds as they struggle upwards.

As you continue switch backing you will veer right, then proceed up a narrow gulch. After a few more switchbacks, you will soon begin to veer left again and crest the ridge. Looking west from the summit you will be able to see the Three Sisters, and north along the skyline Mount Jefferson.

Take a moment to soak in the incredible views before you continue along the trail, descending the northwest side of the ridge. The trail will pass just underneath Monkey Face, an incredibly popular and scenic climbing rock. Soon you will reach a junction, where you will turn left to continue descending down the Mesa Verde Trail.

After travelling beside the cliffs, the trail will continue all the way down to the river. From here you will follow the River Trail as it winds along beside the impressive Crooked River. This path winds all the way around the southern tip of Smith Rock before turning north and returning to the bridge. Turn right here and return to the visitor center.

Insider Hints

  • Smith Rock can get unbearably hot in the summer and this hike offers little shade. Come in the early morning if you complete this hike anytime from June to September.

  • Don't forget to get a parking pass, as day visitors are required to get a permit.


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Tom Tom2 weeks ago

Amazing views from the top!

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