Sandy River Delta

Area Status: Open

Pay the $5.00 per vehicle per day fee at or at an official Recreation Pass Vendor near you. Or, display a valid pass: NW Forest Pass“Every Kid Outdoors”, “America the Beautiful” or Golden Age/Access. Sorry, Oregon & Washington State passes NOT accepted. 

This 1,500-acre natural area is a gateway from Portland to the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area that offers horseback riding, hiking, biking (but e-bikes are not allowed), wading, and fishing. Acquired by the Forest Service in 1991, the delta is managed to restore and protect scenic, cultural, recreational, and natural resources in the river bottomlands where the Sandy River meets the Columbia River. The delta's forests and meadows have been under ecological restoration for decades, and in 2013, an old dike was removed from the Sandy River, restoring its natural channel and improving habitat for salmon and steelhead. 

A “key viewing area,” the delta offers spectacular views of the western Columbia Gorge. Rich in biological diversity, it was long the site of thriving native culture and was even visited by the Lewis and Clark expedition. Over eight miles of hiking, biking, and equestrian trails offer year round recreation. East of the buck and rail fence, a closed Wildlife Habitat Zone supports migratory birds and wildlife.

Seasonal waterfowl hunting by shotgun at the site is only allowed on lands northeast of the buck and rail fence and powerlines, for those holding a valid state hunting license or exercising tribal rights.

Please conserve and care for the Sandy River Delta by practicing “Leave No Trace” principles. This means keeping dogs under control, ensuring they do not alter the landscape by digging holes, and by packing out their waste. Pets must be leashed in the parking, bathroom, and picnic areas and along Confluence Trail.

Multi-use trails include:

  • Confluence Trail - A 1.25 mile gravel ADA trail leading to an eliptical bird blind designed by Maya Lin, made possible by our partners at Confluence Project. Please leash dogs with 100 feet along this trail. The bird blind, comprised of black locust slats, list all the species encountered by Lewis and Clark during the 1904-1906 Corps of Discovery expedition. Listen to Confluence's audio tour
  • Boundary Trail  - A 1.25 mile trail near the habitat restoration zone
  • Meadow Road - 0.25 mile route leading to Confluence Trail
  • Meadow Trail - 2 mile path through meadows with Columbia Gorge views
  • Ranch Dike Trail - 1.25 miles through cottonwoods
  • Old Channel Trail - 1.75 miles along the Sandy River's pre-restoration channel

Commercial dog walking is prohibited at Sandy River Delta, as it can impact public health and safety, aggravate crowding, create conflicts, and damage the floodplain ecosystem. 


At a Glance

Current Conditions: Site is for day use only. Traditional bikes are allowed, but e-bikes are not allowed. Must keep dogs on leash in parking lot and surrounding area as well as confluence trail. Do NOT park in trailer parking area (unless you have an RV or trailer). A valid recreation pass is required.
Operational Hours: Open sunrise to sunset.
Area Amenities: Interpretive Site, Accessible, Picnic tables, Toilets, Parking
Fees: $5.00 per vehicle per day -- pay at, visit an official Recreation Pass Vendor near you, or display a valid federal pass (see Passes section). Sorry, Oregon & Washington State passes NOT accepted. Federally-recognized American Indian tribes may request a free administrative pass for select activities. No cash is accepted on site.
Open Season: Year-round
Usage: Heavy
Busiest Season: busy on weekends year round
  • E-bikes are not allowed
  • No camping or being in the area from sunset to sunrise.  
  • Fireworks and fires are always prohibited. 
  • Dogs must be on leash in parking lot, bathroom, picnic areas, and within 100 feet of Confluence Trail.
  • Commercial dog walking is prohibited. Do not charge a fee to walk, train, or care for other’s pets here.
  • Hay and crop products must be certified weed-free.
  • Hunting is restricted to waterfowl shotgun hunting in the designated area east of the buck and rail fence and north of the power lines.
Closest Towns: Troutdale, OR
Water: No potable water
Restroom: Vault Toilets
Passes: Day use passes can be purchased online or at an official vendor. Federal annual passes are also accepted: NW Forest Pass, ‘Every Kid Outdoors Pass,’ ‘America the Beautiful’ (including Senior, Military, Access, and Volunteer versions). Golden Age/Access pass is still accepted but no longer sold. Sorry, but Oregon and Washington State Park passes are NOT accepted.
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center: Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area

General Information


From Portland, OR: Travel east on I-84 through Troutdale, then take exit #18. Follow the signs to Sandy River Delta located on north side of the interstate; just east of the Sandy River.

From Cascade Locks, OR: Travel west on Interstate 84 for approximately 26 miles to exit #18 and follow signs to Sandy River Delta.

Please reserve parking spots marked for RVs and trailers. Cars without trailers may be ticketed, even if they have a valid day use pass. 

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Mountain Biking

Traditional bikes are allowed.  However, e-bikes are not allowed. Please keep out of the closed Wildlife Habitat Zone. 

River and Stream Fishing

Sandy River is a good place for bank fishing for summer steelhead, spring chinook, coho and trout in the river and bass in sloughs. See the Oregon Dept of Fish and Wildlife website for details about fishing licenses and regulations. 

Day Hiking

Five miles of hiking trails pass through restored riverbottom habitat that includes cottonwoods and meadows. The eastern edge of the trail system passes through open areas with views of the western Columbia River Gorge and, on a clear day, the peak of Mt. Hood is visible. Be aware the site is popular with dog owners. Please pack out all pet waste, control dogs, and prevent digging holes. Pets must be leashed in the parking lot, bathroom, picnic area, and within 100 feet of Confluence Trail.

Horse Riding

A trail system offers five miles for riding through cottonwoods and meadows with views of the western Columbia River Gorge.

Geocaching & Letterboxing

Great geocaching opportunities.


Two accessible picnic tables are available near the parking and one is located near Confluence Trail. Dogs must be leashed in picnic areas.


Picnic tables: 3 on site
Parking: car and trailer
Toilets: vault toilets
Accessible: Parking lot, restrooms and Confluence Trail

Related Information

Recreation Areas

Recreation Activities



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50' - 50'