One of the best things about Oregon is its diversity.
Whether you want to experience sun, snowsports, nature, or great gastronomy, it’s worth visiting Oregon any time throughout the year!
However, it’s a big state with dynamic landscapes and different altitudes. You’ll need to carefully consider which part of the state you visit during other seasons.
Luckily, we’ve made it easy for you. We’ve put together this blog post about the best time to visit Oregon, broken down by season and region: valley, coast, central and eastern Oregon!
When is The Best Time to Visit Oregon?
Spoiler alert: There’s NO bad time to visit Oregon! It just depends on what type of getaway you’re seeking. The even better news? Oregon has it all. A winter adventure, a summer surfing season, gushing waterfalls to chase in spring, and a temperate lowkey fall with hikes nearly to yourself… It’s your Oregon adventure to choose!
Visiting Oregon in Winter
Oregon is a winter wonderland for anyone wanting some legendary powder paired with incredible peaks for skiing. Of course, there are also impressive coastal storms and snowy bizarre alien landscapes that await you. Don’t let the chill scare you off; winter is an amazing time to visit Oregon.
The Valley in Winter
The Willamette Valley is one of the best destinations in the Northwest over wintertime!
Due to its temperate climate, the temperatures don’t get anywhere near as frosty as other destinations in the winter. It has temperatures of up to 46 degrees in the wintertime and usually doesn’t dip below 33.
However, winter can be the rainiest month, with 15 days of rain in December. So pack your rain jacket!
The Detroit Lake Recreation Area is open year-round, spanning over 3,500 acres. A little higher up, there are opportunities to snowshoe.
Plus, if the weather is cooler, there are plenty of cozy accommodations to curl up and watch the snowfall. It is the quietest time of year, but there are still chances to enjoy wine tasting with a professional winemaker or chase after waterfalls.
RELATED: What to Do at Mount Hood in Winter
The Oregon Coast in Winter
While you won’t be sunbathing on the beach in the winter, it’s still a great time to visit. Crowds are virtually non-existent, and you’ll get the odd crisp winter day that’s great for exploring and photography!
If you’re into storm watching, spend some time looking out onto the coastline before returning to your accommodation with a hot drink. Although the days are quite short in Oregon, it’s a great time for whale watching!
If you want to hike, coastal Oregon’s relatively mild temperatures (they rarely go under freezing and can be as high as 52 degrees!) in the wintertime mean that some trails stay open year-round.
Central Oregon in Winter
If you want to try out snow sports, there’s no better time to visit Central Oregon than the wintertime! Pull on your bib and take them to the slopes, either skiing, snowboarding, sledding, or snowshoeing.
It doesn’t usually get too cold in the lowlands, with temperatures hovering around freezing.
However, some roads and hikes will be closed during the winter months, so we’d recommend visiting in a different month if you want to do activities other than snowsports.
Eastern Oregon in Winter
If you’re visiting Eastern Oregon in the wintertime, expect dramatic snow-covered landscapes that look like they should be off a Christmas card.
The average daytime temperature can be around 40 degrees, although it can be much colder in the skiing regions! Skiing and snowboarding opportunities are abundant, with plenty of pistes for all abilities, including kid-friendly slopes.
If you aren’t into winter sports, there are plenty of other things to do in the winter – although make sure that you wrap up warm, as the temperatures can be freezing.
If you’re interested in fossils, visit the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument or the Wheeler High School Fossil Beds.
There are plenty of places to enjoy in eastern Oregon, even during winter.
Visiting Oregon in Spring
One of the best times to visit Oregon is in Spring! When the waterfalls are gushing, the tourists aren’t in full force, and the weather starts warming up. Not to mention you can still nab some deals on accommodation during these quieter months.
The Valley in Spring
The Valley region of Oregon is a top destination to visit during the springtime! The region comes to life with blooming flowers and baby animals at this time of year. Temperatures generally hover around the 70s throughout the season, sometimes even rising to 80 degrees in the latter part of the month.
There are also many events in the springtime, including McMinnville Wine and Food Classic, which runs in mid-march. There’s also Tulip Fest in late March and Memorial Weekend in Wine Country towards the end of the month.
The Oregon Coast in Spring
The weather can be temperamental in Oregon in spring, but plenty of reasons to still visit. While you might not be sunbathing, the temperature rarely reaches 60 degrees until early May, there are plenty of coastal attractions.
April and May have the year’s lowest tides, adding complexity to photographs and giving an extra dynamic to coastal walks. You might still experience some wintery storms, but with warmer weather.
You’ll enjoy beautiful sky colors throughout the springtime and the chance to spot whales and orcas, whose migration continues throughout the springtime! You’ll also find that accommodation prices are affordable outside peak season.
Central Oregon in Spring
When the snow starts melting, it can be a lovely time to take to the hiking trails – and if you’re the adventurous type, you can be among the first people of the year to go hiking!
The Oregon Badlands Wilderness is one of the best hikes to try during this time of year, as it doesn’t have the same snow or ice as those on higher elevations.
The roads to some other hikes are closed during this time of year, so you might need to trek a few miles to reach the start, but if you’re adventurous, this is a great chance to explore some of the region’s more popular treks before they get too busy.
Visiting in spring is also a great chance to get some cheaper lodgings than during the summer or peak ski season!
The average daily temperature is around 74, but it can vary dramatically depending on the month.
Eastern Oregon in Spring
When the snow melts, Eastern Oregon becomes an incredible place to visit. This is some people’s favorite time to see the state, as the weather can be not too cold and not too warm! See Hells Canyon, the deepest river gorge in the USA, before the crowds arrive!
When the weather warms up, it’s possible to travel through the river gorge on a rafting boat. There are also plenty of opportunities to see wildlife, including elk, deer, and mountain sheep!
Rain is rare during this season – expect only two or three days per month. The temperatures can vary wildly, with snow up until March and warm weather beginning later in May. However, highs can reach up to 72 degrees, and lows are typically around 42 degrees.
Visiting Oregon in Summer
This is the peak season to visit Oregon, but we don’t blame you—The weather makes this time of year perfect for any adventure as the snow has cleared, the road are open, and the sun is out! This is also the perfect time of year to enjoy any water-related activities in the state.
The Valley in Summer
Oregon in summer has cooler temperatures than elsewhere in the USA, and the Valley region is no exception.
Temperatures usually hover around the mid-80s, with lower temperatures reasonably common. There are also only 8-10 days of rain during the entire summer. This means it’s excellent weather for hiking and exploring!
Virtually all of the attractions in the Valley region of Oregon are available for anyone to enjoy during the summer. Go horseback riding, sample local wine, or visit small, local towns.
The Oregon Coast in Summer
While it doesn’t have scorching temperatures in the summertime, it’s usually sunny, with heat reaching the mid to high 60s.
People on the Oregon coastline know that this is the best season to visit, and they’ve started some festivals, like the Sandcastle Contest in June. Plus, you can enjoy plenty of activities, including fishing, cycling, surfing, and kayaking.
Central Oregon in Summer
Central Oregon can see temperatures into the mid-80s in the summertime and enjoys very little rain.
Enjoy stunning green scenery, summer events in the towns, and the perfect weather for camping or fishing.
The great thing about Central Oregon is that if the weather is too hot, you can always head up into the mountains where the weather is cooler!
Eastern Oregon in Summer
Unlike elsewhere in the state, Eastern Oregon can be scorching in the summertime! Weather can rise to over 88 degrees, particularly in July and August.
Although Oregon has a reputation for being wet, the high desert region is dry and desert-like. It only gets 10 inches of rain throughout the entire year. There’s a mix of desert, mountains, and plains.
This means that the eastern area of the state is the only part of Oregon where it might be a bit too hot in the summertime!
However, if you like the warm weather, there’s plenty to see in eastern Oregon throughout the summertime.
Enjoy Hells Canyon, which borders Idaho, the Pillars of Rome, which resembles ancient Roman ruins, and the dramatic Alvord Desert.
Visiting Oregon in Fall
We are quite partial to fall in Oregon. We often plan our road trips and activities during these months as the weather is ideal, the snow hasn’t started, so everything is still open, and the main rush of tourists has subsided.
The Valley in Fall
Harvest season is a wonderful time to enjoy Oregon’s wine country.
The Williamette Valley turns all sorts of reds, oranges, and yellows, and it’s a gorgeous spot for photography. Temperatures can be in the 70s in September and fall to the lower 50s in November.
It’s the best time to visit Oregon for autumnal walks or to try out wine tasting. Sample delicious local food as you explore – harvest season means lots of fresh fruit and vegetables are just waiting for you to try!
The Oregon Coast in Fall
The temperatures drop a little during fall, with temperatures from around 68 to 50 in the daytime and 48 to 41 degrees in the nighttime.
Throughout the winter months, the weather can cloud over – in fact, November can be the wettest month with over 11 inches of rain throughout the 30 days. However, there are still plenty of accessible hikes during this season!
You can also take a scenic drive around Oregon’s highlights if the weather isn’t great. Try the stunning Alsea highway, which drives between Waldport and Philomath, with impressive vistas of the state’s best mountains as you trundle along.
Of course, if the weather isn’t so kind, then there’s plenty of incredible food to enjoy in the coastal Oregon area – don’t miss the seafood while you’re here!
RELATED: 17 Breathtaking Oregon Coast Hikes
Central Oregon in Fall
As the temperature drops during fall, it goes from 71 degrees to around 57 degrees. Low temperatures can be around 33 degrees or even drop to as low as 22 degrees in the nighttime!
You’ll notice the leaves changing colors and falling from the trees. This is often thought to be the best time to visit Central Oregon.
Plus, it’s a great time to avoid crowds, and the end of the tourist season means lower prices. Plus, it’s not freezing during the fall; it’s a wonderful time for hikes and other outdoor activities!
Eastern Oregon in Fall
The temperature starts to decline in the fall, and it can be a great time to visit the Eastern Oregon region. As fall is between the peak summer season and ski season, the prices can be lower, but there are still so many attractions to enjoy.
If you like hiking, fall is the perfect season. Trails aren’t usually closed due to snow, but you won’t struggle with scorching midday heat like you could in the summer!
The harvest period in September is also a great time to visit. You’ll have the opportunity to sample plentiful local food, including delicious fresh fruits and vegetables.
In September, temperatures can rise to over 80, but they usually drop off by the end of the month, with highs in the low-mid 70s. Throughout October and November, temperatures gradually drop off through the 60s, with lows generally around the 40s.
The rainy season officially starts in September, although it’s never too rainy in this part of the state – a far cry from the western coastal regions!
Oregon is a complex state, with lots of different climates and weather patterns. Whether you want to traverse national parks, go skiing, enjoy local culture, or take some of the best hikes in the state, this guide should have you covered!
Whatever the season of your Oregon trip, there is always somewhere and something to enjoy!
Oregon native, photographer, videographer, adventurer.