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Jun 30

May 2015: Portland Trip Report

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We spent the Memorial Day weekend over in Portland. We flew in early Saturday morning and were back home late Monday night. Me and Karen had been to Portland before in May 2013 and loved the natural surroundings as well as the large number of waterfalls in the area. This time we wanted to show my parents the area.

Day 1: 

We arrived late afternoon at Portland airport and picked up our rental car and drove to our hotel in east Portland. After checking in and freshening up we decided to visit the Portland Saturday Market. We had some trouble finding parking nearby the market and finally parked about 3 blocks away and walked to the market.

Portland Saturday Market

I had read that it was the largest continuously operated open market in the USA and saw quite the crowd there. We ended up having lunch at the various food vendors in the market.

Portland Saturday Market

After spending a couple of hours walking around the market we went back to the hotel.

Day 2:

We started out the day driving the scenic route on the Columbia River Highway. First we came across the Vista House, an observatory and comfort station for travelers on the Columbia River Highway.

Vista House, Columbia River Gorge Scenic Route

The views overlooking the Columbia River was spectacular.

Vista point overlooking Columbia River Gorge

Driving further down the highway, we came across the first big waterfall among the many waterfalls on this route – Latourell Falls.

Latourell Falls, Columbia River Gorge

Latourell Falls, Columbia River Gorge

Walking down the path among the greenery you come up close with this beautiful waterfall.

Latourell Falls, Columbia River Gorge

After spending about an hour at Latourell falls, we drove along the scenic route and arrived at the Bridal Veil Falls Hike Trail next.

Bridal Veil Falls Trail Hike, Columbia River Gorge

The hike is 0.6 miles round trip and its completely worth it when you arrive at the loud waterfalls surrounded by beautiful green scenery.

Bridal Veil Falls, Columbia River Gorge

Bridal Veil Falls, Columbia River Gorge

We spent half an hour at the Bridal Veil Falls and then hiked back to the parking lot.

Bridal Veil Falls Trail Hike, Columbia River Gorge

Next up is the most famous waterfall in Oregon, the Multnomah Falls. We walked up to the bridge shown in the photograph and had a good look at the falls. It was definitely the most crowded among all the falls along the Columbia River Gorge highway.

Multnomah Falls, Columbia River Gorge

Multnomah Falls, Columbia River Gorge

After spending a couple of hours here, we continued onward and came across the most accessible of the various waterfalls along the highway, the Horsetail Falls. This waterfall is right across the road and you don’t have to walk at all to see this one.

Horsetail Falls, Columbia River Gorge

By this time we had “waterfall fatigue” 🙂 and decided to call it a day. We drove back to the Portland Saturday Market again for some late lunch and then back to the hotel.

Day 3:

The only item on this day’s itinerary was the Wahclella falls. This is the longest hike we did among all the waterfalls on the Columbia gorge but it was also one of the most beautiful. Wahclella Falls hike comes out at 2.0 miles roundtrip so plan for at least 2-3 hours for the trip.

Wahclella Falls Trail Hike, Columbia River Gorge

Wahclella Falls Trail Hike, Columbia River Gorge

The hike is definitely worth it, not only because of the river along the way, but also the beautiful, resounding waterfall nestled in between the mountain and greenery at the end.

Wahclella Falls, Columbia River Gorge

Wahclella Falls, Columbia River Gorge

After spending some time around the waterfall we hiked back to the parking lot. By this time it was already afternoon and our flight being early evening we went back to the hotel.

 

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