Gifford Pinchot

The Gifford Pinchot National Forest provides a wide variety of recreation opportunities, including the 110,000 acre Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument.

The Gifford Pinchot National Forest is one of the oldest National Forests in the United States. Included as part of the Mount Rainier Forest Reserve in 1897, this area was set aside as the Columbia National Forest in 1908. It was renamed the Gifford Pinchot National Forest in 1949, after the first Chief of the Forest Service, Gifford Pinchot.

Whether you seek solitude, social activity, creative inspiration, wildlife, forest products or scenic beauty, you can find it in the Gifford Pinchot National Forest. Located in southwest Washington State, the forest now encompasses 1,312,000 acres and includes the 110,000-acre Mount St. Helens National Volcanic Monument established by Congress in 1982.

You can also explore Mount St. Helens, from the easy surroundings of the Coldwater Ridge Visitor Center and the Johnston Ridge Observatory, or hike to the very edge of the crater!

In addition to visiting the volcano, you can hike, backpack, climb mountains, fish or paddle. The Gifford Pinchot also has seven Wilderness Areas with incredible scenery and unmatched solitude.

Gifford Pinchot statistics

State(s):
Washington

Nearest large Urban Area:
Portland, Ore

Notes & Conditions:
Stay on top of weather and road conditions before you go. Plus, with an active volcano, special care is advised before hiking around Mt. Saint Helens.

Research campground locations and amenities at the U.S. National Forest Campground Directory. The Web site is full of pictures and detailed descriptions to help you plan your next trip.

If you want to experience a guided recreation trip in a National Forest, visit Adventure Vacation to learn about whitewater rafting, canoeing, kayaking, horseback riding, camping, hiking and fishing trips.

Permits, passes, fees:
Maps:
Visit the National Forest Store to see what maps are available for this Forest and others you may want to visit.

First-timer's adventure:
How about something different? Try a visit to the giant Ape Caves - volcanicly formed vast caves you and the family can visit together. Visiting caves is unlike any other activity, so be prepared before you go. The Forest Service site includes lots of great information for the novice caver.

Contact Info:
Forest Headquarters
10600 N.E. 51st Circle
Vancouver, WA 98682

(360) 891-5000

Forest Service website >>

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