Distance: 7.1 miles

Difficulty: Weekend Warrior

Directions: From Portland, take Highway 26 toward Mount Hood for 42 miles. In the town of Zigzag, turn left onto East Lolo Pass Road and drive 4.2 miles. Turn right onto Forest Road 1825 and make another right to cross a bridge. Bear left onto Forest Road 1825-100 until you dead end at the parking lot and trailhead.

It's not quite Multnomah Falls in terms of Disneyland wow factor, but it's up there. Bear in mind that some things are justifiably popular—and Ramona Falls is just such a place. It is one of those natural wonders that must be seen in person. Photos, good as they may be, do the sprawling cascade little justice. Accordingly, the approximately 7-mile loop hike that visits it is a rite of passage for any and all Oregon hikers—including dirt-caked and determined adventurers trudging their way along the Pacific Crest Trail, which joins a portion of this route.

You'll have to ford the Sandy River or cross on downed logs (a bridge was washed out several years ago), so exercise caution. But the view of Mount Hood from that vantage point is a stunner, so that's a plus. In addition, the walk beside Ramona Creek looks and feels more like a forested fantasyland than a hiking trail—and if ever there was a place to enjoy a picnic, it is in the large, shaded amphitheater surrounding the cooling mist of the falls.