Umatilla may be a city, but it has a relaxed, small-town vibe that appeals to many. With a seemingly-endless array of parks and trails to explore, as well as a few dog-friendly hotels and a reputable veterinary clinic, this is a city that caters so well to the canine population.
For dogs who love to look at birds, the McNary Wildlife Nature Area will seem like a dream come true. Although you will need to keep your pooch on a lead here, this 318 acre parcel of land is so rich in wildlife, with a nature trail and bird viewing platforms to help you and Fido really take in your diverse surroundings.
If all of those birds will be too distracting for your pup, there are plenty of city parks to choose from instead. The small and green Kiwanis Park can be found right by the entrance to the McNary Wildlife Nature Area, while Hash Park is home to more facilities, such as sports fields, restrooms and picnic areas.
Looking for somewhere to spend the night? There are a few dog-friendly hotels around town, including the Umatilla Inn and Suites, which allows two pets per room with no restrictions on size. The Quality Inn is another option, and while they also allow two dogs per room, they need to be small breeds.
With so much tail-wagging fun to be had in Umatilla, it is easy to see why this city is so incredibly popular with dogs.
There are so many exciting walks to be had in McNary, beginning with the McNary Beach Recreation Area. Here you will find a playground, paved pathways, stunning views of the Columbia River, and, best of all, access to the Lake Wallula Scenic River Hiking Trail. This five mile trail follows along the Columbia River, offering up views of the surrounding hills too and ending at the Hat Rock State Park. The fun doesn't end there, as Fido will no doubt want to explore the one mile nature trail within this park, so be sure to bring plenty of water and doggie bags, as well as a lead, for your adventure.
Umatilla's City Center is home to so many different parks. If your pooch loves waterfront views, the 40 acre Nugent Park sits on the shore of the Umatilla River, with a boat ramp, a fishing dock and a paved path. The Umatilla Landing Park also provides access to the Umatilla River, and has a beautiful flower garden too, while the Village Square Park is much smaller, but still makes for a pawtastic dog walk. If you need to relax after all of that walking, take your pooch to Java Junkies, which serves up both breakfast and lunch alongside their espresso and tea-based beverages.
About a ten minute drive from Umatilla is the Hermiston neighborhood of Route 395/ W Punkin Center Rd, where you will find even more pawsome parks to explore. The 40 acre Butte Park is the largest in Hermiston, and is always popular with pooches. Not only is it home to sports facilities and a playground, but there are also walking trails winding their way through the greenery here for you and Fido to stroll through. Hermiston's second largest park, Riverfront Park, is also in this neighborhood, with 16 acres to explore, picnic areas, a playground and beautiful views of the Umatilla River. This park also boasts a walking path loop that stretches out for just under a mile.
Less than 20 miles from Umatilla lies the small town of Boardman, which is home to the Umatilla National Wildlife Refuge. This park is spread over two states, with just under 9,000 acres in Oregon and another 14,876 acres in Washington, and is home to such a wide range of wildlife, from the bald eagle to the mule deer. In addition to walking through the refuge, you and Fido can also explore it in your car, with a special tour route that showcases the various species and habitats that live within the refuge. If you would like to treat Fido to a meal afterwards, the River Lodge and Grill is dog-friendly, and serves up delicious meals alongside views of the Columbia River.
The City Center of Pendleton is about a 40 minute drive from Umatilla, and there are a couple of activities here that your dog will no doubt love. Just by the river lies the Let'er Bark Dog Park, and although this park is not fenced-in, it is quite a distance from the road, so your pooch will still be able to safely run free off the lead here, just be sure to bring doggie bags and drinking water. For a sweet treat afterwards, take Fido to Pendleton Pupcakes. This doggie bakery not only serves up homemade dog treats, but also artisan cupcakes for humans too, so you and your pooch can really indulge together.