Oregon 2016

August 2016

We left home Saturday, August 13, 2016, and flew to Portland. We spent the first night at the Country Inn and Suites near the airport. Nothing memorable happened—no riots, at least not near the hotel. The next day we headed east for sightseeing and some easy hikes in the Columbia River Gorge.

Columbia River Gorge

Sunday, August 14

Sunday was a day of waterfalls. We started with Latourell Falls, on a 2.4-mile loop trail.

LatourellFallsLower-1120 Latourell Falls
LatourellFallsUpper-1150 Upper Latourell Falls
LatourellFallsUpper-1151 Upper Latourell Falls
LatourellFallsLower-1246 Probably the most interesting sight of the day: Latourell Falls and the mossy basalt
BridalVeilFalls-1322 We took a 1.3-mile hike to see Bridal Veil Falls.

We had Sunday brunch at Multnomah Falls Lodge. We had already hiked a few miles that day, and we walked up with packs, hats, hiking poles, and boots, but they told us to come in and then treated us as well as their more civilized guests.

MultnomahExperience Multnomah Falls is the tallest waterfall in Oregon. It might also be the most visited.
MultnomahFallsUpper An easy walk along a paved trail got us a view of Multnomah Falls without people in the way, although they were nearby.
GreenWoods-1517 We took a five-mile hike to see streams, waterfalls, and green woods without so many people around.
MultnomahFallsTrail-1602 Keith on the trail
UnknownStream-1616 Falling water and green woods
FairyFalls-1704 Fairy Falls
WahkeenaFalls-1732 Wahkeena Falls

We spent the next night at the Brookside Bed & Breakfast in Hood River, where we had a big room and a friendly host. We bought Keith’s new favorite beer glass after dinner at the Double Mountain Brewery & Taproom.

Eagle Creek Trail to Tunnel Falls

Monday, August 15

On Monday we retraced our steps a little to take a longer hike on the Eagle Creek Trail. It’s an interesting trail that leads to a rather magnificent waterfall. The trail passes through a rock tunnel behind the waterfall and then along the almost vertical rock face beyond it. The part just beyond the falls isn’t for anyone with a fear of heights, although a cable attached to the rock provides some extra security (except when people are passing each other). The waterfall was our destination. We went far enough to get the best camera angles and then turned back.

EagleCreek1 Eagle Creek Trail on the way to Tunnel Falls
EagleCreek2 Eagle Creek Trail
KeithAtTunnel1525 Tunnel and falls
Tunnel Falls Looking back at the waterfall—Keith’s favorite shot, taken with his iPhone
TopOfTunnelFalls1503 We couldn’t quite get a good shot of the entire waterfall from top to bottom, but here’s a view of the top.
MaryAndKeithAtTunnel Mary and Keith at a wide spot in the trail

After the hike, we drove toward Mount Hood and spent the night at the Best Western Mt. Hood Inn.

Mount Hood

Tuesday, August 16

On Tuesday we drove to the Timberline Lodge and went in for a look. The Best Western had been fine, but the lodge would have been a step up.

TimberlineLodge1 Impressive view through the back window
TimberlineLodge2 It felt like a good place to stay.
HoodFromLodge Patio

After seeing the lodge, we hiked to Paradise Park. The scenery varied a lot; so, there are a lot of pictures.

MtHoodStart Still near the beginning
MtHoodToZigZag On the way to Zigzag Canyon
MtHoodMaryAtZigZag Mary at the overlook
ParadiseLoop On the Paradise Loop Trail
HoodMarysFavorite Mary’s favorite shot—wildflowers and mountain
MtHood10968 Mary likes wildflowers.
MtHood10975 It seemed that we saw more rock and cinder than greenery; we just took more pictures of the greenery.
MtHood10977 That’s probably Mount Jefferson in the distance. All the lonely mountains you see in this region are active volcanoes.
MtHoodRock10978 A reminder that Mount Hood is a volcano
MtStHelens-P1140522 That’s Mount Saint Helens (topless) in the distance.
Trees-P1140532 Through the trees (with added color saturation to correct a weak original photo)
MtHood10991 Sitting beside the stream we had just crossed, Mary cooled her feet and replenished calories.
MtHoodReturn Up from the canyon
Final-P1140554 Final shot from the Zigzag Canyon Overlook

After the hike, we drove to Bend and checked into the Holiday Inn Express. We had dinner at the Deschutes Brewery Public House.

Crater Lake

Wednesday, August 17

On Wednesday, we drove to Crater Lake National Park and started a counterclockwise loop around the lake with many stops for pictures and one hike. The color of the lake was remarkable—none of the pictures below has been adjusted, even to correct a bad exposure.

CraterBlue10996 We picked a good day to see the color of the lake.
Wizard20001 Wizard Island
CraterBlue20014 One of many amazing views
CraterBlue20018 From this angle, even in person, it was easy to imagine you were looking up at a deep blue sky and not down at deep blue water.
GarfieldUp20020 For our hike of the day, we chose Garfield Peak on the crater rim. We parked near the Crater Lake Lodge and walked in to take a look before starting up the trail.
Garfield20022 Nearing the top, looking at people above us
Garfield20025 At or near the top
GarfieldTop20032 At the top of Garfield Peak
GarfieldPeak-Mary On the way down, Keith saw a view he wanted to remember and asked Mary to stop for a photo. You can get magnificent views of the lake without hiking, but this was a hiker’s view—you had to work for it.
GarfieldTrailDown Looking back up the trail
GhostShip20049 After Garfield, we finished the counterclockwise loop. The views from the other side weren’t quite as good—too many trees—but Keith used the trees to frame this shot of the Ghost Ship.

After a day at Crater Lake, we spent the night at the Holiday Inn Express on the river in Roseburg.

Pacific Coast

Thursday, August 18

On Thursday we drove to Coos Bay on the Pacific coast and turned north. We made several stops for photos, including the Heceta Head Lighthouse State Scenic Viewpoint and the Cape Meares State Scenic Viewpoint, our last stop of the day.

FoggyCoast-18th It was foggy at first. We could hear sea lions through the mist although we never saw them.
Coast20078 As we drove, the fog dissipated.
HecetaHeadLighthouse Heceta Head Lighthouse
HecetaSpiral Inside the Heceta Head Lighthouse
DevilsPunchBowl Devil’s Punch Bowl
CapeMeares20142 Cliffs at Cape Meares
CapeMearesLighthouse-18th Cape Meares Lighthouse
OctopusTree The Octopus Tree at Cape Meares
Octopus20139 View of the sunny side

We spent the night at the Ashley Inn in Tillamook.

Friday, August 19

On Friday we returned to Cape Meares to get some photos in the morning light. The light wasn’t great for photos, but we had the place to ourselves, which was nice. Afterward, we continued our drive up the coast, with a stop at Ecola State Park, where we hiked the Clatsop Loop Trail and the Tillamook Lighthouse Trail.

Cape MearesWelcome Cape Meares in the morning
CapeMearesRocks-19th Offshore rocks at Cape Meares
CapeMearesRocksZoom Zoomed in
TillamookLighthouse20179 The Tillamook Lighthouse
TillamookLighthouseTele Zoomed in
EcolaFerns2 Ferns along the Lighthouse Trail
LighthouseTrail End of the Lighthouse Trail

We spent the last night at a bed-and-breakfast in Arch Cape. It had a great location right on the beach and just a short walk from the tip of the cape. Our hosts were civil to us but nothing like our previous bed-and-breakfast stays (e.g., Hiker Hostel, Duck Roost Inn, Castlemaine Inn, Franconia Notch Guest House, Brookside B&B). In our experience, most B&B hosts treat their guests like friends or family; these guys treated us like customers. Still, everything was high-quality.

LastBNB View from the B&B
LastBNB2 At the tip of the cape

Saturday, August 20

After breakfast outside and a few more beach photos, we drove to Portland and caught our flight home.

ArchCapeMorning Moon through the morning fog
ArchAtTheCape Arch at the cape
BreakfastAtOceanPoint A good breakfast with great scenery


If you’re looking for things to do on vacation, Oregon offers a variety. We could go back.

We were most impressed by Tunnel Falls, Mount Hood, and Crater Lake. As we mentioned, Tunnel Falls isn’t for anyone with a fear of heights. We were OK with it and would do that hike again. Others look at the pictures and say, Nope. Crater Lake was amazing, but we were lucky to see it on a clear day. We have friends and family who saw it when it was less impressive because of cloud cover or smoke. We might not go back there, but only because it could never be better than it was the day we saw it.