Explore a Wild and Weird Urban Volcano - Atlas Obscura Experiences
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Explore a Wild and Weird Urban Volcano

$25 per person
2 hours
Up to 10 people
See Dates
$25 per person
Portland, Oregon
What We’ll Do

We’ll explore one of Portland’s first and largest parks, which happens to also be an extinct volcano.

We’ll walk the paths and paved trails of Mount Tabor, visiting the volcano’s central vent and summit. Along the walk we’ll learn about Oregon’s active volcanoes, how this unique park came into being, and the cultural and historical context for its development and preservation. We’ll stop at viewpoints and along the natural paths to learn more about the natural history and geology of the Portland area and identify some of the plants, trees, and animals that live in this essential urban habitat. We’ll also visit the park’s iconic open-air reservoirs, crafted at the turn of the 20th century, and learn about the unique nature of Portland’s pristine natural water system. And, like most of Portland, there’s some weird and wacky stories connected to Mount Tabor, so we’ll dive into some of the stories of mischief and mayhem that make this mini-mountain so unique.

Where We’ll Be

We'll start at the volcanic crater and make a short climb along paved trails to a viewpoint of cinder cones and larger cascade volcanoes. Next, we'll stop by the summit statue of one of Oregon's journalistic luminaries and get a top-down view of the developed west side of the park. We'll pass through forested trails stopping to identify plants and learn the history of the phantom poles before viewing the reservoirs and returning to the crater.

About Your Host

Hi. I'm Ruby, a member of the Atlas Obscura community.

A native Portlander, I grew up in a house on the flanks of Mount Tabor. I’m a Registered Geologist in Oregon and specialized in the study of volcanoes and environmental geology for over a decade. Now, I write and speak about the outdoors, environmental issues, and local histories. I’m the author of four books, including the critically acclaimed A Woman’s Guide to the Wild series and the recently released Ground Truth: A Geological Survey of a Life. As a long-time educator and public speaker, I specialize in connecting people to the natural world via storytelling and science communication. Mount Tabor is one of my favorite places.

For questions about this experience, please contact me directly through Airbnb.

What Else You Should Know

Parking is available at the Visitor's Center.

We’ll be following paved paths and wooded trails from Mount Tabor’s crater to its scenic vistas and iconic reservoirs. We’ll cover about 1.5 miles on mostly flat terrain with two short hills.

Group Size

There are 10 spots available on this experience.

Who Can Come

Guests ages 2 and up can attend.

What to Bring
  • Weather appropriate clothing
  • Sturdy walking shoes
  • Water
Cancellation Policy

Any experience can be canceled and fully refunded within 24 hours of purchase. See cancellation policy.

Dates and Availability

There are no upcoming experiences at the moment. Fill out the form below to be notified when we add new dates.

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