Cardinal Landing Bridge

Written by’s Local Expert


The Cardinal Landing Bridge is a type of footbridge that spans the waterfront. In our exploration of the area, we decided to check out the bridge as well as the floating under it along the river. It is a beautiful experience and one I highly recommend!

Some people come to explore the bridge and the surrounding area, but most find this is a great hiking spot. There is an out and back trail located near Sunriver. This is about a 4.7 mile hike, so one that is best done by more experienced individuals. The route isn’t challenging in terms of elevation, but it is somewhat long. It typically takes about 1 ½ to 2 hours to complete. I found the trail to be more of a woodsy, relaxed feel.

The trail itself is perfect for a simple hike. This is not a paved trail – it is all dirt paths. It doesn’t even look like a true trail because there isn’t a large trailhead. However, it’s there, and it is fantastic. You can use it for hiking, mountain biking, or running. There are a lot of people that take the trail, so it can be pretty busy during the weekend. This dirt service road is the perfect path for those who want to bring their dogs, too. You have to keep them on a leash, but they will love all of the scents to explore.

If you take this route, it will take you along Spring River Road. The Deschutes River is right along the path. You will then come to Cardinal Landing Bridge. That is the endpoint of the route. You can then turn around and come back. If you continue over the bridge, you will head into the Sunriver area and find yourself near the golf course. There is a portion of this trail that takes you over the road, and Abbot Road can be very busy. Be careful on that path.

Don’t forget to just stop and check out the bridge itself. It really has a lot of intricate work on it. You will notice it is very heavily used by those who are exploring this area. I love a nice morning walk here with the sun coming up.

Getting There

The Cardinal Landing Bridge is just off Abbot Drive. This footbridge takes you over the water of the Deschutes River to a trail. It is a beautiful wood bridge that’s sound and an easy walk. I highly recommend it for the overall beauty of the experience, but it generally is going to be something you see along your tours of Sunriver. It connects Sunriver walking and biking paths to the forested area and the mountain biking trails.

If you want to get into the water to explore the region and see the bridge from another view, you can do that as well. I recommend doing so at the Sunriver Resort Marina if you are staying in that area. You can also get into the water near Harper’s Bridge, as there is a very small boat launch in this area. It is the perfect place to get into the water if you want to float and explore the region.


The bridge is around 50 years old. I don’t know much of its history, but it looks weathered, though it remains completely reliable from my experience. I love the areas of the wood that are no longer painted well. It looks like a bridge that’s set back in time. Just walking over it, you can feel the history of it.


There are two things to know about the Cardinal Landing Bridge. The first is that the waterway under it is a lot of fun to float down. The second is that the views from the bridge of the water and forested areas are explant. It is easy to see why this area is so well loved by so many. The river flows so calmly under the bridge and around this entire region, though it is actually pretty fast moving. Chances are good that you will see a lot of people floating down the river on floats, kayaks, canoes, and a few small boats.

What’s Nearby

The Cardinal Landing Bridge spans over the Deschutes River. There is not a lot in the way of things to do around here. There are a lot of residential areas near the bridge. If you continue over it and keep walking, you’ll come to the Woodlands Golf Course area along with the Big Pines Lodge.

There’s plenty to do in Sunriver, though. Some of my favorites included the Oregon Observatory and the Sunriver Nature Center. During our team here, we also spend some time at Sunriver Trail Rides, the aquatic center, and the whole Village at Sunriver area, where there are a number of restaurants and shops to explore.


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