Paulina Peak

Paulina Peak, an awe-inspiring drive in Oregon

Paulina Peak is a high mountain peak at an elevation of 2.434m (7,984ft) above the sea level, located in Deschutes County, in the U.S. state of Oregon. It’s one of the highest roads of Oregon.

Can you drive to Paulina Peak?

Part of the Newberry National Volcanic Monument, the road to the summit is called NF-500 (Paulina Peak Road). It’s totally unpaved. Vehicles less than 23' in length (passenger cars, pick-ups and vans) can be driven on this steep and dusty road, however, it is quite rough and narrow in some places. Parking at this site requires a recreation pass.

Is Paulina Peak Road open?

Located within the Deschutes National Forest, this is one of those "must see" things in Oregon. This area is often inaccessible and closed due to snow until early July and will close in late October/early November depending on snow conditions. Paulina Peak was once the home of a Forest Service lookout tower, hence the gravel road, but the tower was ultimately removed in 1968. This site offers a grand overview of the Newberry Caldera, the south and west flanks of the Newberry Volcano, the Cascades, the Fort Rock Basin, and much of central Oregon. On a clear day, the Cascade Range is visible extending into California (Mt. Shasta) and Washington (Mt. Adams). Bears are common at all of the campsites within the crater.
Pic: Chad Stingle

 

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