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The Columbia Gorge and Mt. Hood Area Travel Guide

  • Photo: / Shutterstock
  • Photo: Peter Guttman/
  • Photo: Peter Guttman/

Plan Your Columbia Gorge and Mt. Hood Area Vacation

Volcanoes, lava flows, Ice Age floodwaters, and glaciers were Nature's tools of choice when carving a breathtaking 80-mile landscape now called the Columbia River Gorge. Proof of human civilization here reaches back 31,000 years, and excavations near the Dalles have uncovered evidence that salmon fishing is a 10,000-year-old tradition in these parts. In 1805 Lewis and Clark discovered

the Columbia River to be the only waterway that led to the Pacific. Their first expedition was a treacherous route through wild, plunging rapids, but their successful navigation set a new exodus in motion.

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Top Reasons To Go

  1. Waterfall walkabout Hikers will discover dozens of gorgeous cascades along the Historic Columbia River Highway and its adjoining trail network, including 620-foot Multnomah Falls.
  2. Outdoor rec mecca From kiteboarding the gorge to mountain biking the slopes of Mt. Hood, this is a region tailor-made for adventure junkies. Get the gear and the beta from outfitters in Hood River and Government Camp.
  3. Historico-luxe Grand and gaudy landmarks like McMenamins Edgefield, Timberline Lodge, and the Columbia Gorge Hotel are guest favorites and entries on the National Register of Historic Places.
  4. Suds-tacular Western Oregon is the national seat of craft brewing, and the Gorge/Hood area has its share of inviting taprooms, from Stevenson's tiny Walking Man Brewing to Full Sail's upbeat national headquarters in Hood River.

When To Go

When to Go

Winter weather in the Columbia Gorge and the Mt. Hood area is much more severe than in Portland and western Oregon. At times I–84 may be closed beca...

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Travel Tips

The Columbia Gorge and Mt. Hood Area Travel Tips

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