There are so many great things to do in Oregon that it’s easy to get caught up in the “doing” and get behind on the “sharing”. Here’s a quick update on what nature-y adventures I’ve been on lately.
Located in the Columbia River Gorge, within the Guy W. Talbot State Park, Latourell Falls is a 249 foot waterfall. It’s a short 40 minute drive east of Portland and well worth the stop. There’s nothing quite like the feeling of standing at the base of something so big to make you feel so small. Also a notable stop in the area is Crown Point. This spot will give you an amazing view of the Columbia River Valley. We were lucky enough that day to meet a sweet, older artist painting a picture of the view.
This beautiful island is located in Northwest Portland on the Columbia River and packed full of farmers growing all sorts of good things to eat. I had the pleasure of hanging out on the beach for a bit where I met a praying mantis, some cute dogs and Cole got to romp around a bit in the water and tear up the sand all while under Van Gogh-esque clouds.
The morning before my company picnic on Labor Day weekend, a couple of my coworkers and one of my friends gathered for a short hike on a trail near Mosier Creek. The views were stunning and the company good. The light rain that fell at times was the perfect relief from the warm sun.
One of the owners of the company where I work graciously opened up his home in Mosier to host all the staff and their family and guests on Labor Day weekend. We hung out by the creek that runs through his property, while the dogs and kids swam, met some very cute goats and had a make your own pizza cook-off in an outdoor wood-burning oven. We wrapped up the night with songs performed on a variety of instruments. It was a pretty special night that felt more like family than work.
Also on Labor Day weekend, I spent a day on the coast. Originally destined for a hike at Oswald West State Park, but due to a lack of parking and no trail maps, ended up at Hug Point instead where I explored familiar territory. One of the cooler spots on the coast, Hug Point is full of great rock formations and small caves to explore and even a little waterfall. After a few hours there, I headed south to Manhattan Beach for a bit and then to Netarts Bay for dinner and a spectacular sunset.
On Labor Day, I headed to Mount Hood for a hike to Tamanawas Falls. This was my first hiking adventure in the mountains and it was spectacular. Most of the hike was on a trail that ran along Cold Spring Creek. Upon reaching the falls, I was met by rolling mist from the waterfall. Afterward, a stop at Timberline Lodge for some beer and food. Those of you who have seen The Shining, you know exactly what this place looks like for it is where they filmed the outside scenes of the movie. The lodge is located just shy of the Peak of Mount Hood. The views from the top are indescribable. Somethings I think are just better off experienced for yourself. This is one of them. I will say that the food at the lodge is amazing. Go hungry because you are going to want to eat a little bit of everything.
Radical Reels Tour
This weekend I was delighted to attend another viewing of some of the most spectacular adventure sport films around at the Clinton Street Theater in Portland. The Banff Mountain Film Festival is running their Radical Reels Tour and these short films cover everything from white water kayaking, rock climbing, fly-suit jumping, mountain biking and more. The cinematography is beautiful and the stories are inspiring. Check out the schedule and plan on attending if either tour is coming through your city.
Also this weekend, I visited Jones Creek, located about an hour west of Portland in the Tillamook State Forrest. After grabbing a bite with a friend at a cute old country cafe, we hung out by the creek and walked around a bit in the empty campground areas. This spot is great for swimming, if you can handle the cold water, and a pretty place to have a picnic and watch all the people enjoy the clear water on a hot day.
Oregon Coast Digest is running a photo contest and for the first time ever, I decided to submit a photograph. The theme is “Day at the Beach” and it was difficult to pick just one photo. After much thought (and a little help from my Facebook friends) I selected a photo and submitted it just hours before the deadline. If you are so inclined, help me out and “like” the photo on their Facebook page. 1 like = 1 vote.
I’m a little behind with posting photos on Flickr, but you can check out more of my nature photography here.