Lodging | Gorge Downwind Champs
NOTE: 2021 Race HQ / DOWNWIND village will be in Stevenson Washington at the fairgrounds vs Hood River. Some of the text below is Hood River focused. One may want to focus their search on Stevenson / Skamania Lodge for hotels or Airbnb.
!!!!MUST READ!!!! The Gorge is the most popular summer wind sport location in the USA and a very popular west coast adventure sport location in general. You are competing with 1000's of others adventure seekers for lodging. We are serious about booking your lodging as soon as you register. If you wait till even a few months before the event you will be feasting on scraps.
Fly into Portland Airport (PDX). From here you can Uber or Lyft into Hood River. This cost about $85 USD and is a 1:15 hour drive. We strongly would advise against this option. Also note, there is no Uber or Lyft in Hood River once you arrive. The best choice by far is to rent a car with your mates at the airport. The Gorge is a big area and you will want to explore. See our "Family-To Do" page. There are endless waterfalls, mountains, hikes and much more to explore. A rental car will greatly add to your experience. Personally, I would say it is mandatory for a fun easy trip, but there are participants who have done without.
Where to stay
Hotels - Hood River
If you book early. The Hood River Hampton Inn & Suites is walking distance from the event. This in combination with purchasing on site boat storage will let you park your car at the hotel and just walk to the event. This is the only real option if you do not rent a car. But even if you have a rental car, this is still by far is the best option as it makes stumbling home from the beer garden easy. It also eliminates any parking concerns at the event. You have To book this the year prior when you register. This is no joke, it sells out 7 months in advance.
If you do not book the Hampton early enough and it sells out, which it will, any hotel in Hood River at this point is a good choice. Just google them. But they all will sell out so do this at least 2 months in advance.
Hotels - Alternative Cities
Portland is about a 1:15 hour drive to the West and a major trendy city if you are into that and don't mind the 2.5 hours of driving every day. The Dalles is around a 30 minute drive to the East and is a small industrial town with "Local Flavor". Stevenson is 30 minutes to the West on the North side of the river and has a few iconic restaurants and pubs as well as a resort. You can google hotels in any of these town. None really stand out over the others, however, unless you are in Hood River, you will be driving and a rental car is absolutely mandatory. There is no public transportation system between these locations.
Camping in the area is very popular. !!WARNING!!. All the campsite near the river have loud trains at night. Not the end of the world, but you have been warned. Tucker state park is a 15 min drive South of Hood River and quiet although in the past they have not taken reservations. Viento State park is 10min West of Hood River and where the downwind shuttles start making it ideal. Book months in advance and be ready for the trains.. Home Valley park is on the north side of the river and a 20 min drive from Water Front park. This is where the race starts. Timber Lake Campground is over a 30 min drive and expensive but has been very popular because it one of the few places away from the tracks that you can make reservations at. Moss Creek is also a nice park away from the trains but also a 25 min drive.
No houses are truly walking distance from the Water Front park, but if you have a group of 4 to 6 and a few rental cars, this is an extremely fun and affordable way to do the Gorge. But.. You just must reserve these 7 months or more in advance as they all sell out. In the past, these sites have been the best for finding Rental houses in any of the areas below
Hood River is the closest but you may find cheaper and available housing in the following cities. Make sure you try the links above with the cities below if you are not finding anything in Hood River.
White Salmon - 10 mins to the north and a very fun town with bars, restaurants and more, $2 Toll bridge each way
Bingen - 5 min Drive North. "Local Feel" logging town. Very close to White Salmon Bars and the event
Mosier - 10 mins to the East. There is not much in Mosier other than houses
Lyle - 20 min Drive. Very small town. $2 bridge Tole each way
Stevenson - 30 min drive to the North West - Fully functioning city. $2 bridge Tole each way