What to do in Hat Rock State Park

Hat Rock State Park lies on the south shore of Lake Wallula behind McNary Dam on the Columbia River. Hat Rock was the first distinctive landmark passed by the Lewis and Clark Expedition on their journey down the Columbia, and is one of the few remaining sites not underwater.

The park is a desert oasis surrounded by rolling sagebrush hills and out croppings of basalt. The park offers visitors a chance to escape summer heat under shelter of cottonwood, black locust ringed by acres of green grass

A boat ramp provides access to the lake, which is noted for walleye, sturgeon and other fish. Waterskiing, jetskiing, swimming and boating are popular here. The park has its own pond – stocked with rainbow trout – and provides year-round habitat for waterfowl.

Bring the kids, enjoy a day on the water, fish in the pond or play volleyball in the sand court. Hat Rock offers the opportunity to get out and enjoy nature with spacious, well-maintained grounds that offer lots of room for your family or large group to get together for outdoor recreation fun.

Except for the west boat ramp, this park will close for the season October 31 and is scheduled to reopen in spring (the exact date will be determined by the weather; check here for updates). During the winter, there are no restroom facilities open at the park.

Vital stats: There is no fee to use this park, unless you want to reserve the picnic area.

Hat Rock State Park offers picnicking, hiking, fishing, camping, wildlife viewing activities. Waterskiing, jetskiing, swimming and boating are popular here.

Hat Rock State Park, located off U.S. Highway 730 nine miles east of Umatilla, lies on the south shore of Lake Wallula behind McNary Dam on the Columbia River.

The climate in Oregon varies by region. Eastern Oregon is a high desert. Precipitation received annually accumulates to less than 10 inches of rain. Summer temperatures often reach 90 degrees in the lower elevations. Winters can be bitterly cold here, although there is little humidity. The mountains receive heavy precipitation and cool temperatures throughout the year. Conditions become more extreme the higher you climb. If visiting the region during the summer months be prepared for afternoon thunderstorms and chilly evening temperatures. Snow may be encountered on high country trails throughout the summer months.

1115 Commercial Street NE
Salem, OR 97301-1002

Phone: 800-551-6949

  • Hat Rock State Park Travel Q&A