Best Places to Find Morel Mushrooms in Oregon

Oregon’s diverse landscapes and forests make it a prime location for finding the coveted morel mushroom.

These tasty wild mushrooms pop up in the springtime, but you need to know where to look.

Here are some of the top places in Oregon to find these delectable fungi.


The forests around Maupin in north central Oregon are filled with morel mushroom hunting hot spots. Morels thrive in symbiotic relationships with certain trees like aspen, ash, oak and elm.

Focus your foraging efforts near these trees at the edges of forests and woodlands.

The damp, riverside forests near Maupin provide ideal growing conditions. Search the ground around dying or dead elm, apple, and cottonwood trees.

South-facing slopes warm up more quickly in the spring, giving morels an earlier start, so concentrate efforts on sunny hillsides.

Just be sure to properly identify any mushrooms before consuming them.

Oregon Coast and Coast Range

The coastal forests of Oregon are damp, mild, and full of foraging treasure. The Coast Range extends from the Columbia River down to the California border.

Morels can be found beneath spruce and fir trees in these coastal mountain forests.

Search the edges of spruce and pine forests along the ocean. The damp soil and cool weather is perfect for morels.

Focus on south-facing slopes that get sunlight to warm the soil. Burned areas from forest fires also provide prime morel habitat.

Southwest Oregon

Southwest Oregon’s woodlands have ideal conditions for spring morels. Elm, ash, poplar, and apple trees are favorites of morels in this region.

Forests with canopy openings that allow sunlight to reach the forest floor are great places to find morels.

Hot spots include areas along the Applegate River and Illinois River valleys. Keep an eye out for dead or dying trees, downed logs, and tree stumps.

These are perfect habitats for morel mushrooms to colonize. Spend time searching and be patient, as morels can blend into their surroundings.

Southern Oregon

The mountain forests of southern Oregon are morel heaven after long winters. Cold weather extending into spring delays the mushroom growth until soil temperatures rise.

Once the morels pop up, there is a short window for harvesting.

Search for morels in the oak woodlands growing between Shady Cove and Prospect.

Areas near Crater Lake are also filled with morel hunting spots, especially under old growth conifers. Be sure to obtain permits if hunting in National Forests.

Focus efforts near creeks or streams. The presence of water and trees like cottonwood, aspen, and conifers indicate prime morel real estate.

Use a walking stick to gently move vegetation to uncover hidden morels.

Tips and Precautions

When mushroom hunting, be 100% certain of any varieties before consuming them. Some poisonous mushrooms can resemble morels.

Only harvest morels that are hollow inside when cut in half. Never eat mushrooms raw.

Bring along a mesh bag for collecting morels, as well as a knife for harvesting. Maps, proper footwear, bug spray, snacks, and water are also essentials.

Always obey regulations when foraging on public lands.

With lush forests and the right conditions, Oregon is a morel lover’s paradise. Now get out there and start hunting for these wild, wonderful mushrooms!

Just be sure to leave some behind to produce spores for next season.

[Related Post: 9 Common Mushrooms In Oregon]

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