Description - This facility protects and preserves the site of the western headquarters of the Hudson Bay Company's fur trading operations. Once a wilderness outpost the fort became a supply headquarters for individuals and families who traveled to the Oregon Country in the 1830s and 1840s.
- Fort Vancouver is now included in a 366-acre National Historic Reserve that protects historically significant areas adjacent to it as well. In addition to the fort the site includes the Vancouver Barracks, Officers' Row, Pearson Field and portions of the Columbia River waterfront. The General O.O. Howard House serves as the visitor center for the Reserve, and is staffed by National Park Service personnel. Improvements to the site include the Water Resources Education Center and Marine Park.
Recreation - Recreation opportunities at Fort Vancouver focus on experiencing life in the mid to late Nineteenth Century. At the visitor center you'll find information to help you interpret the reconstructed buildings and working exhibits within the reserve. A 12 minute introductory video, museum exhibits and sales area lie in the visitor center. Nine major buildings and features have been reconstructed and appropriately furnished to the Nineteenth Century interpretation of the facility.
Picnic tables, not integral to Nineteenth Century fur trading, are located throughout the reserve. There is also a covered picnic shelter and a small playground available for visitor use. However, no camping, lodging or concessions lie on site. All park structures and facilities, excluding one building at the fort, are accessible to wheelchairs.
Climate - When you visit Fort Vancouver expect cool and rainy fall, winter and spring weather. Summers are warm and the driest time of the year. Wear comfortable sportswear with rain protection in fall, winter and spring, and comfortable walking shoes at all times.
Fort Vancouver National Historic Site is located north of Portland, Oregon, in Vancouver, Washington.