A nighttime picnic is a great way to see the stars, get to know someone, or just enjoy a cool summer night. Fortunately, the Portland area offers many easily accessible spots for enjoying a nighttime picnic.
With the exception of an LED lantern and an extra blanket, nighttime picnics don’t require anything other than what you’d bring on a daytime picnic. So pack up your basket, grab a friend or lover, and head out to one of these great nighttime picnic destinations.
1. Rocky Butte
Formerly known as Wiberg Butte, this extinct volcanic cinder cone butte is one of three inside the city limits. It has a rich, colorful history, including being home to a jail, churches, colleges and a Union Pacific Railroad station named Quarry. Be careful when hiking around Rocky Butte at night, though – the volcanic rock terrain can be hard to navigate without a LED lantern or flashlight. For extra safety, use an LED headlamp and keep your hands free.
2. Powell Butte
Located near SE Powell Blvd and 148th Ave., Powell Butte is not nearly as high as some other parks and buttes in the area, but it still makes a great picnic spot. With plenty of grass areas to spread a blanket and lie down, Powell Butte is ideal for star-gazing or watching a meteor shower with a special someone.
3. Mount Tabor
It’s a bit of a hike, but definitely worth the trip. Located on SE 60th between Division St. and E Burnside St., the park offers a spectacular view of the city. Turn off your LED lantern and bask in the glow of the Portland skyline. Or put on your LED headlamp and go on a hike. Make sure not to stay out too late, though – the park closes at midnight.
[Photo by: NASA Johnson Space Center - Earth Sciences and Image Analysis (NASA-JSC-ES&IA)]