Willamette Mission is one of the most significant and beautiful historic sites in the Willamette Valley. The park occupies land where the first mission for American Indians was founded in 1834 by the Reverend Jason Lee. Members of the Methodist Mission were later active in the formation of Oregon government. A monument is located in the park providing information on this settlement. The original mission buildings are represented by framed outlines called ghost structures. A landing for the Wheatland Ferry -- the first to carry the covered wagon across the Willamette River in 1844 -- is in the park. The park offers many daytime opportunities for boaters, anglers and other users. Some of Willamette Mission's 1,680 acres hold filbert and walnut orchards. The nation's largest black cottonwood is in the park (it's older than the U.S. -- it's been around for over 250 years). There are grassy meadows surrounded by an array of flowers, plants, and trees. For those that enjoy water, there's Mission Lake and the Willamette River. Willamette Mission State Park is perfect for your next picnic! The excellent picnic facilities are reservable for large groups. There are picnic shelters, electricity, restrooms, water faucets, picnic tables, fire rings, sunny areas and trees for shade, plus ample room for parking. You can even rent a large, 4' x 3' charcoal briquet barbecue at the park. The park also has areas set aside for volleyball, horse shoes, softball and soccer. Eight miles of trails run along the Willamette River, with an incredible amount of native birds, plants and wildlife [there's even a self-guided interpretive trail through our riparian education project]. The park staff love a challenge! Plan on Willamette Mission as a part of your corporate picnic or other group activity
This is an awesome hike with a little bit of history thrown in. Beautiful area with lots of trees and singing birds around you. The hike is listed as moderate, but I found it to be easy. I did the educational 2.5 mile loop then wound my way over to the mission trail. Don't leave without seeing the ghost structure of the mission. Will definitely do this hike again.
Nice, easy flat trails. There are numerous tree identification signs for you to get a sense for the local trees. Also you will see the largest Black Cottonwood tree in the nation, learn about the flood of 1861 that changed the course of the Williamette River and learn to look out for cougars! Yes, there have been cougar sighting in the park just two week ago (last sighted Sept 1, 2015) . So if you are hiking with younger kids keep them reasonably close. There is a small fee ($5) for day use. Also there is a group camp and horse trails.
Very generic Oregon park, but fun to take a bike ride on! The $5 fee doesn't seem worth it just to go biking, plus it's sort of out of the way of any major town.
Let me say though I didn't get to explore the park much, so there is probably more to offer that I didn't get to experience. Nice open areas. 3/5
If you are looking for "offroad" riding, ride into the main park and ride the horse trail. The horse trail is a fun cyclocross ride, plenty of mud and places to practice dismounts and run-ups. Pretty flat, well marked trails. Lots of paved trails for running, biking and walking. I would say the horse trail is easy, much more challenging in the winter when its super muddy and slick, probably not very interesting for a mountain biker, most interesting for cyclocross riders and single speed mountain biking.
Best ride is to start at the north end of the park, there is a parking lot right as you get off the East side of the river from the Wheatland ferry. I would suggest parking on the West side of the river and take your bike across the ferry.
The trails spend a lot of time along the Willamette river, lots of great beaches for swimming and picnicking in the summer.
NOTE: As of summer 2011 only walkers are free ride on the ferry, bikes are $1.00 each way, cars are $2.00 each way. They only accept cash, NO CREDIT OR DEBIT cards.
Nice family walk area, also part of the waterway. Wouldn't call this a "mountain bike" area as there is NO mountain. If you park on the westside of the Willamette you can travel across the wheatland ferry (free for walkers/bikers) and into the park. Nice place for some water play as well.