If you’re looking for a quiet location with a country feel, have you considered Champoeg State Park family photos? Because of its size and the fact that it’s outside of Portland proper, Champoeg is usually less crowded, even on sunny summer evenings. This makes it an ideal choice for families hoping for quieter sessions or who have kids that might be distracted by a lot of other people around. It’s an excellent spot to soak in nature and connect with your partner and children during a family photo session. With a meadow that’s beautiful in all seasons, it’s my top choice for family photos in the Portland area. Read on for everything you need to know about family pictures at Champoeg State Park!
Planning Your Champoeg State Park Family Photos
The thing I love about Champoeg State Park is that it’s huge, with so many options for my clients. It’s impossible to visit all of the great backdrops during one family photo session, so often clients will return year after year to Champoeg and still get variety in the location. Near the visitor’s center, there’s a rustic wood barn, a pioneer garden, and a charming apple orchard. Head down into the park, and you’ll find wide open fields, oak groves, and a dock on the Willamette River. Sidenote, if you’re looking for a family adventure, Champoeg State Park’s flat, paved trails are excellent for kids on bikes or stroller walks!
Best Time of Year for Champoeg State Park Family Photos
You can get beautiful family photos at Champoeg State Park nearly any time of year, but summer is truly magical there. In late summer, the fields dry out and create a beautiful neutral backdrop for serene family photos. If you’d prefer lush greenery in your photos, springtime delivers with blooms and a meadow. In the fall, the leaves change in the apple orchard and around the oak grove for some fall color.
As an Oregon State Park, Champoeg does have a parking fee. As of 2023, it’s a $5 day use fee, which you can pay at the booth as you enter the park or at the kiosk next to the visitor’s center. If you have an Oregon State Parks Annual Pass, that works here and you can bypass the parking fee kiosk!
Including Dogs in Your Champoeg State Park Family Photos
Dogs are allowed in most of Champoeg State Park, excluding a portion of the field at the back of the park. Dogs must be on a leash at all times. If you’re planning to bring your pup to your session, read my post on how to include dogs in your family photos here!
Champoeg State Park is a quick 30 minute drive from downtown Portland. It’s located at 8239 Champoeg Rd NE, St Paul, OR 97137. From I-5, take exit 282A and turn right on Arndt Rd. Turn left on Butteville Rd, then right on Champoeg Road. Follow this road through the countryside until you see the pioneer barn and red visitor’s center on your right.
Ready to Book Champoeg State Park Family Photos?
If this sounds like a great fit for your family, head over to my main page to learn more about the SSP Family Portrait Experience. And if you’d like to learn more about locations for family photos, be sure to check out my Guide to Portland Family Photo Locations.