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Chief Paulina Horse Camp

If you’d like some excellent horseback riding with views of the fascinating volcanic forces that shaped Central Oregon, then a trip to Newberry National Volcanic Monument is a must.  The trails are delightfully horse friendly, with manageable elevation changes, stunning views, and no drop-offs anywhere.

 Chief Paulina Horse Camp

Newberry Crater

Newberry Crater was formed when its namesake volcano blew its top, much like Crater Lake did.  And like its more-famous cousin to the south, Newberry Crater gradually filled with water, forming Paulina Lake and East Lake in the bottom of the caldera. 

 Chief Paulina Horse Camp

The Riding

The trails at Newberry explore the crater floor, make a 25-mile loop around the crater rim, and connect the upper and lower trails with tie trails that radiate out like the spokes on a wheel.  The result is an assortment of delightful loops of varying lengths and difficulties.  Every trail offers panoramic views. 

Chief Paulina Horse Camp

The crater rim offers panoramic views of Paulina and East Lakes below you, as well as Paulina Peak and North Paulina Peak on the caldera’s rim.

Chief Paulina Horse Camp

The Three Sisters and the rest of the Cascades range dominate the western horizon.  From a couple of vantage points you can even see Fort Rock in the desert to the south.

Chief Paulina Horse Camp 

You’ll get a close-up look at the recent (in geologic terms) Big Obsidian Flow, which sparkles in the sunlight because of the chunks of black obsidian embedded in the lava.

Chief Paulina Horse Camp

You can ride along beautiful Paulina Creek, the crater’s only outlet, enjoying the riparian wildflowers and stopping to ogle Paulina Falls, a double waterfall that drops 80 feet over a basalt ledge.  Impressive!

Chief Paulina Horse Camp

And be sure to take the Crater Trail over to Paulina Lake Resort for lunch or dinner at the resort’s restaurant. The food is delicious and the lake views are relaxing.  (Then, when you get home, rent the movie “Wild” again – it was partially filmed here.) 

Chief Paulina Horse Camp

Yes, indeed, a trip to Chief Paulina Horse Camp is a memorable experience.  You’ve got to go!

The Camping

Chief Paulina Horse Camp

Chief Paulina Horse Camp (pronounced Paul-EYE-nah) is located at the base of Newberry Crater.  It has 14 campsites with corrals, fire rings, and picnic tables.  The camp also features stock water, a toilet, and a manure bin.

More Information

The trails out of Chief Paulina Horse Camp are covered in Riding Central Oregon Horse Trails, by Kim McCarrel, available at

Riding Central Oregon Horse Trails

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