Hells Canyon Overlook


Family looking over rugged grassy canoyn

The Hells Canyon Overlook is a very popular site for visitors who want to see Hells Canyon from above. The site is fully accessible with interpretive signs, paved parking areas, vault toilets and picnic areas. From the rim visitors can view McGraw Creek and look over the canyon at the Seven Devil Mountains in Idaho. (The Snake River is not visible from this site). A variety of Spring and Summer wildflowers are found along the paved pathways and near the parking areas.

Hells Canyon National Recreation Area

At a Glance

Current Conditions: Current Conditions
Area Amenities: Interpretive Site,Accessible,Picnic tables,Toilets,Parking
Fees No fees or passes are required at this site.
Open Season: June
Usage: Heavy
Restrictions: General rules of use and restrictions apply for this developed recreation site.
Closest Towns: Enterprise, Oregon (52 miles); Halfway, Oregon (33 miles)
Water: No
Restroom: Vault Toilet
Operated By: Forest Service
Information Center: Wallowa Mountains Office

General Information


From Enterprise, Oregon travel south on Oregon State Highway 82 to Joseph for about 6.5 miles; In Joseph turn left on Oregon State 350 and go about 8 miles to the Wallowa Loop Road; Turn right on the Wallowa Loop Road (also known as the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway) and travel on this road which eventually becomes Forest Road 39 for 34 miles to Forest Road 490;  Turn left on Forest Road 490 and go 3 miles to the overlook entrance on the right; The site has a loop access road in the parking area.

From Halfway, Oregon head east out of town for 1 mile on Record Road to Highway 86; Once on Highway 86 go 9 miles to Wallowa Loop Road (also known as Forest Road 39, Pine Creek Road or/and Hells Canyon Scenic Byway) towards Enterprise and Joseph; Turn left on the Wallowa Loop Road/Forest Road 39 and travel about 19.5 miles to Forest Road 490; Turn right on Forest Road 490 and go 3 miles to the overlook entrance on the right; The site has a loop access road in the parking area.

Advisory: The Hells Canyon Scenic Byway is usually closed by snow from late October through late May or early June and is not passable with motor vehicles.

Recreation Map

Map showing recreational areas. Map Information


Nature Viewing

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Outdoor Learning

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Picnic tables Some tables at area
Interpretive Site Several panels interpreting canyonlands
Toilets Accessible vault toilets
Parking RV and truck trailer parking areas
Accessible Parking area, vault toilets and pathways