20 Things to Do in the Winter in Oregon & around the Northwest

Snowshoers at Mirror LakeWhen winter hits it’s easy to just wrap yourself in that cozy afghan that you grandma crocheted, to turn on a movie and tune out to the wild weather outside. I have to admit that I fall into this trap more often than I like to admit, but I always regret a day wasted inside. While the weather can be nasty in Oregon December through March, the winter really is a great season to get out and explore. The crowds disappear, nature becomes quiet and serene and the white stuff starts to fall. Who could ask for more?!

So this winter, I’m resolving to get outside and out-and-about Oregon and you should too! Rain, shine or snow, try one of these  20 winter activities in Oregon!

What’s your favorite winter activity to see you through to spring?

Urban Winter Birds

  1. Go to a comedy show at Harvey’s or Helium in Portland
  2. Cheer on the Trail Blazers or Winter Hawks at a sporting event
  3. Wander one of Portland’s museums that keeps the city weird, like Stark’s Vacuum Cleaner Museum, Portland Hat Museum or the Bathtub Art Museum!
  4. Cook a creative, seasonal meal with fresh produce found at one of Portland’s winter markets
  5. See a show or concert at Portland’s Center for the Arts performance halls or other smaller venues around town, like Mississippi Studio & Douglas Fir

Winter Wanderers

  1. Cross-country ski in Central Oregon
  2. Night ski at Ski Bowl after work (Lady’s night every Tuesday 3pm-10:00 for only $19!)
  3. Go on a guided snowshoe tour or try one these 10 snowshoe trails around the Northwest
  4. Try snow-kiting!
  5. Snow camp at Crater Lake or hike into an alpine hut or fire lookout tower

gigantic beerFearsome Foodies

  1. Visit Willamette Valley wine county and taste Pinot Noir without the crowds
  2. Go truffle hunting then enjoy a mushroom dinner at the Joel Palmer House
  3. Sip cider, one of Oregon’s newest food fads
  4. Brew your own batch of beer with the professionals or at home
  5. Take a cooking class at EVOO or Wine Country Cooking Studio

Adventure Seekers

  1. Take a indoor rock climbing or bouldering class at the Portland Rock Gym
  2. Winter kayak or raft Oregon’s rivers
  3. Road trip to eastern Oregon and see the painted hills and ghost towns covered in snow
  4. Learn compass navigation or outdoor photography with a class at REI
  5. Hike or trail run in Forest Park or in Columbia Gorge (less likely to have snow)

BONUS: Cross the boarder into Washington for more winter adventures!

  • Hike Mt. St. Helens and then ski down
  • Go snowshoing in the Olympic National Park or Mt. Rainier National Park
  • Make it a long weekend in Seattle exploring their local brewpubs, markets and music venues!

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