• Peter Skene Ogden Wayside is a dramatic 300-foot-deep canyon into the Crooked River Gorge
• Features a stunning view, walking trails with interpretive panels, picnic areas, and bungee jumping
Peter Skene Ogden Wayside is a tremendous 300-foot-deep canyon into Crooked River Gorge, located nine miles north of Redmond right off of U.S. Route 97.
The Scenic Viewpoint offers a breathtaking view of the Crooked River Canyon. Three historic bridges connect both sides of the basalt canyon, carved by the Crooked River for thousands of years. Before the first bridge was constructed, the canyon created a huge obstacle for travelers.
Built in 1910, Oregon Trunk Line Railway Bridge is a steel two-hinge arch span with a total length of 460 feet.
The old highway bridge, Crooked River High Bridge, was constructed a quarter mile upstream of the Railway Bridge in 1926 by a famous bridge engineer Conde McCullough. At that time, the 464 feet long bridge was the highest single arch span in the United States. Today it is open to foot traffic only offering breathtaking views of the Crooked River Canyon. This bridge is a bungee jumping site typically open from May through October.
The new highway bridge - Rex T. Barber Veterans Memorial Bridge was build in 2000 to accommodate heavy traffic on US 97.
The 86-acre Peter Skene Ogden State Park is located at the top of a scenic canyon. A series of interpretive panels along the park provide information about the area and its history.
Visitors of the Peter Skene Ogden Wayside have access to grassy fields, a short trail along the cliff, picnic tables, and clean restrooms. Parking is available for both cars and trucks as well as vehicles with trailers, but large vehicle parking is limited.
The spot was named after Peter Skene Ogden who led a Hudson's Bay Company trapping party. It's believed to be the first discovery of the area which dated back to 1825.
The state park has a memorial of World War 2 fighter pilot Rex T. Barber. He was most famous for the interception of a Japanese aircraft with Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto in April 1943. He completed his military career in the rank of colonel in 1961 and settled in Culver, Oregon where he lived for the rest of 40 years of his life.
Another historical fact: Peter Skene Ogden State Scenic Viewpoint was a scene of one of the most well-known murders committed in Oregon. Jeannace June Freeman threw her partner's two children, aged 4 and 6, into the Crooked River Gorge. She was sentenced to death in 1961 for her crime and became the very first woman in Oregon who was facing the death penalty, but her sentence was later replaced with a life sentence. Freeman died in prison in 2003.
Warning signs posted around the park: “Many dogs have died here! Put your dog back in the vehicle!”
Peter Skene Ogden Wayside | General Description
Open: Year-round from sunrise to sunset
Managed: Oregon State Park
Location: Peter Skene Ogden State Scenic Viewpoint
Services: Picnic areas, restrooms
Accommodations: Camping prohibited
Distance from the parking: Short
Road access: Any passenger vehicle
Day-use fees: Free
Activities: Hiking, nature viewing, picnicking
Dogs: Must be on a leash
Popularity: Moderate to high
Elevation: 2,700 ft (823 m)
Peter Skene Ogden Wayside is located:
- 9 miles north of Redmond
- 26 miles north of Bend
- 138 miles east of Salem
- 138 miles southeast of Portland.
Directions to Peter Skene Ogden Wayside
- Travel north 8.8 miles on US-97 to the destination.