Oregon in 7-8 days

Mar 5th, 2008, 05:15 AM
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 1,115
If you've never been rafting you may enjoy a trip through Big Eddy on the Deschutes R. You will get wet but....it is fun, safe and exciting. http://www.suncountrytours.com/river...iver_Big_Eddy/
johnthedorf is offline  
Mar 5th, 2008, 07:05 AM
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I agree with John. 97 to 84 is quicker, but really boring. We did this route over Christmas. 97 to26 to 35 is really scenic though and not much slower. That would be my pick. And the Big Eddy is a blast! We do that every summer and it never gets old.
mms is offline  
Mar 5th, 2008, 08:52 AM
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SO many great things to do and so little time to do them. The "Big Eddy" rafting sounds like a blast, but our time is so limited we probably wouldn't be able to do it and still see Crater Lake AND make it to the coast.

At present I am thinking 2 nights at Hood River, a long drive to Crater Lake on our third day and then on to Grant's Pass for 3rd night and Gold Beach 4th night OR 2 nights at Gold Beach and then nights 5-7 at Yachats (or split Yachats and somewhere else?).
philsbert1 is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 05:17 AM
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If you go up the gorge, dont forget to stop at Multnomah Falls
dkb is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 06:58 AM
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Sounds good--now the big question is, does Tu Tu Tun Lodge have room for you on the date(s) you'll be in Gold Beach? I don't know if your budget extends to a splurge like that but if so, it's very, very well worth it.

As far as whether you're further north than Yachats on night 7--what time is your flight the next day? That may determine it.
NWWanderer is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 07:30 AM
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Since you've already decided you'll need another trip to Oregon <vbg> here are some ideas for next time. Make a loop from Portland through The Dalles and Baker City and the John Day area. The Dalles has an excellent small museum. Baker City has the Oregon Trail center, which we have visited several times because the Oregon Trail experience so captures my imagination. You can still see the ruts from the wagon trains. Eastern Oegon is totally different from what you'll see on your upcoming trip. We love it all, especially Oceanside on hte coast.

sallyky is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 07:56 AM
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You might consider doing Portland for at least a couple days--it is one of the most lively U.S. cities with lots to see and do--gardens, theater, great dining--staying in a downtown area hotel will let you step out your door and take free transportation on the streetcars, light rail, and buses in the downtown area. You can go up the gorge to Hood River on an easy day trip and loop back around Mt. Hood--or you could cross the river into Washington and visit Mt. St. Helens area too.

The coast deserves to be explored leisurely, with overnights along the way. We enjoy the old fisherman's wharf area in Newport, and Yachats is just a short drive south of there. Florence to the south is also fun.

We have owned vacation property in Central Oregon for years, and it takes 3 hours to drive there from Portland. I think I'd make Central Oregon and Southern Oregon another trip so that you're not constantly in the car. Oregon is a big state!

Have fun! Sharon

norahs is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 08:59 AM
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Thanks for all the suggestions. I know that we will do another Oregon trip, but it's so hard to pick and choose for this one. I am even (slightly) considering cutting out Crater Lake and southern Oregon and folding that into a northern California trip some time in the future. See questions below:

The only thing I have decided for sure is to spend at least 2 nights at Yachats (Overleaf Lodge looks really neat), possibly our last 2 nights. Our flight leaves PDX ~ 2 PM. Could we wake up and drive to Portland in time to make the flight?

Not sure if there is availability at Tu Tu Tun. Is it expensive? We aren't really splurging on lodging (well, maybe at Overleaf) as we will be out hiking, walking, soaking up ambience hopefully as much of the time as possible.

Having a tough time finding a place with availability in the Gorge area. Best Western Hood River is booked up. Any suggestions? We will be heading down OR 35 from the Gorge so we thought Hood River would be a good place to stay overnight the first two nights.

Has anyone driven the McKenzie Pass-Santiam Pass Scenic Byway (126 to 242 circle west of Sisters)? I was reading it was a remarkably beautiful drive with lots of nice hikes. We would only be able to do it if we stick to central and northern OR and bypass Crater Lake/Gold Beach/southern Oregon altogether and headed to the central coast through Eugene. Our trip would then be something like 2 nights at the Gorge, 1 in Bend, 2 in Yachats and 2 someplace farther north on the coast. Would we sacrifice too much with this plan?

philsbert1 is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 09:18 AM
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A fun place to stay might be the Edgeield Inn - it is not really in the Gorge but at the beginning of it and an easy drive to Gorge activities

Have stayed there several times

sunbum1944 is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 09:54 AM
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The McKenzie Pass/ Santiam area is beautiful scenery - and there are lots of great hikes in the area

Personally, I could easily spend a week in the area - hiking, biking etc - and I only live a couple of hours away
One of my fav hikes in the area is Iron Mountain - 300 varieties of wild flowers grow there and fabulous views from the top

sunbum1944 is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 09:57 AM
Join Date: Feb 2008
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Driving tours are my favorites!

I feel the loop as described above by bbgboy puts you in the car just a few too many hours a day. This one still has a lot of seat time but it’s better, though it cuts out some incredible scenery… though any trip will. A lot of people from the east bite off more than they realize out here, while I love Crater Lake if you drop it you could save hundreds of miles and see other great stuff, but here it is:

1st day Wednesday: Portland to Hood River
Arrive at Airport Rent your car there, Drive E on I-84 up the Gorge see Multnomah Falls and stay in Hood River. If you arrive early this should be adjusted. What is your eta?

2nd Day Thursday: Hood River to Sunriver.
Hwy 97 This is the Columbia Plateau, see the ghost town of Shaniko, see Mirror Pond in Bend, dine at the Pine tavern, then drive another 20 miles to Sunriver. Two nights here – read that’s what you wanted, but it is difficult elsewhere on this itinerary.
Day 3 Friday: A local Day
Century Drive – the High Cascades Lake loop – Newberry Volcanic National Monument Visitors center on HWY 97 for a walk in the lava fields. Still a 100 Miles of driving, take the ski lift (yes, in summer) to the top of Mt. Batchelor. See the lakes.
Day 4 Saturday: Sunriver to Prospect
From Sunriver travel south again on Hwy 97 to Klamath Marsh and into the Crater Lake National Park Area. The North Entrance will LIKELY be snowed in clear into early July this year… check in advance and plan your route accordingly. Staying at Prospect Junction Hotel was an excellent suggestion – see my review at tripadvisor! (Crater Lake Lodge will already be booked but do take in a lunch or early dinner there.) If this is July 4th there are some adjustments to be made.
Day 5 Sunday: Prospect to Roseburg
Prospect across to Diamond Lake then down Hwy 138 descending along the North Umpqua River - welcome to God’s country. Schedule your white water rafting trip her – even older people like this. On down to Roseburg for the evening.
Day 6 Monday: Roseburg to Lincoln City,
Travel down the lower Umpqua River. Take in a dune buggy ride South of Florence. See Newport and see the Sea Lions, on up to Depoe Bay’s a great spot to take a short boat ride to see whales. Stay in Lincoln City at any of the beach front Motels.
Day 7 Tuesday: Lincoln City to Portland.
Here is your day to see the wine country of the Willamette valley. Consider using HW 99W through McMinnville and not I-5 nor Hwy 99E. See the Rose Gardens in the “West Hills” . Take a walk in Portland’s downtown district – see the waterfront. Take a trolley ride.
Day 8 – Fly home – take vacation when you get there because you will be tired!

bfrazier is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 11:27 AM
Join Date: Feb 2008
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Re: Has anyone driven the McKenzie Pass-Santiam Pass Scenic Byway (126 to 242 circle west of Sisters)? I was reading it was a remarkably beautiful drive with lots of nice hikes.

Yes - lots of times... it is known as the "Old McKenzie Highway" and is not the same as "Santiam Pass". Even Oregonians confuse these roads. I recommend it IF: One, it is only open in the summer. Two, last year rock slides closed it part of the summer and it was poorly marked as being closed. Three, it is not for trailers or motor homes it is very narrow. four - mosquitoes can make even a short walk unbearable at certain high lakes in July - go prepared. Be sure to see the elk across the road from Sisters High School when you get down to the town of Sisters! Or, you will get the same kinds of volcanic experiences at Newberry National Volcanic monument.
bfrazier is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 11:38 AM
Join Date: Feb 2008
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Re: Not sure if there is availability at Tu Tu Tun. Is it expensive?

Tu Tu Tun Lodge is world class place to stay and you would be positioned for a lower Rouge Jet Boat tour (From Gold Beach) which is somewhat better than the ones out of Grants Pass, but this will entail an awful large round trip. Trip advisor lists the Tu Tu Tun price at 115 - but will be more in the summer, if available at all.
bfrazier is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 11:54 AM
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bf, how would you categorize H62 and H58 during early September going from I-5 to Crater Lake?

Easy drive? Or narrow, lots of twists and turns, etc? Thanks.
travelinandgolfin is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 05:30 PM
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RE: Author: travelinandgolfin
Date: 03/06/2008, 03:54 pm

bf, how would you categorize H62 and H58 during early September going from I-5 to Crater Lake?

Easy drive? Or narrow, lots of twists and turns, etc? Thanks.

Both are clear well maintained highways and neither present undue hazards. Hwy 62, which winds beside the upper Rouge River is spectacular, where as 58 is a wider, gentler and more more direct route from the north but will have more truck traffic. Where will you be coming from and going next would determine best route.

bfrazier is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 05:53 PM
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Since I have lived in Oregon all my life and since my family anscestors traveled The Oregon Trail in covered wagons in the 1800's and helped found towns and cities all across this state; since I know this state very intimately, might I make a few itinerary suggestions for your short visit here?

I suggest you make sure to pre-book ALL your lodging, car/suv rental and events booking, as much in advance as is possible! Rent the car from pick-up point at PDX to drop-off in Medford, Oregon.

I suggest you folks fly into Portland Airport/PDX and have a car or SUV rented at Enterprise Car Rentals at the PDX airport! For the four of you adults how about a nice mid-sized SUV at least? Most motel/hotel chains are very close by PDX. Rent the car/SUV and then get a good nights sleep at your motel/hotel, the day you fly-in to PDX.

Day 1 of your visit, get up early at your motel at PDX and travel the Columbia Gorge on the Oregon side of the river. Travel from your PDX motel via I -205 South, a couple miles to I-84 East. Easily accessible from I-84 are the spectacular Multnomah Falls. On up river easu access off I-84, you can visit Bonneville Dam, Hood River and The Dalles, Oregon. Lots of fun things to do if you want. When you've seen enough, you should have pre-booked motel accomodations in the Dalles or Hood River,Oregon.

On Day 2, from The Dalles or Hood River, you could travel back down I-84 to Cascade Locks, cross the Columbia River on "The Bridge of the Gods" to the Washington State side of the Columbia Gorge and travel west, down-river. You can stop and climb up to the top of Beacon Rock, below Bonneville Dam a few miles, and then travel on into Vancouver Washington and visit the Fort Vancouver National Monument, where the Old Fort Vancouver has been almost fully restored.

Once you are ready, you could come back across the Columbia River on the I-5 Interstate Bridge and stay at a pre-booked motel/hotel once across the river in Jantzen Beach or Hayden Island in North Portland. Might I suggest Red Lion Inn On the River, @ 909 N. Hayden Island Drive, Portland, Oregon. This motel is just across the I-5 interstate bridge from Vancouver, Washington, very easy to find, right off I-5!

Day 3, up early again, you could choose to get back on I-5 South and go downtown in Portland to visit OMSI, (Oregon Museum of Science and Industry), or better yet; Take I-5 South from your hotel then take I-405 West bound over the beautiful bridge and go up into the West Hills to see the Portland Rose Gardens and Washington Park, The Zoo or whatever you want while in the park.

It's an easy return to the freeway and then travel west and take I-217 south to the Hiway 99W exit in Tigard, Oregon.
Travel West on Hiway 99W, through Oregons famed Willamette Valley Wine Country! You will travel 99W through Newberg, Dundee and McMinnville, Oregon. In Mac,
Take Hiway 18 west to Ocean Beaches.
This will bring you out on the Oregon Coast at Lincoln City.

You can enjoy the best ocean beach views and easy beach access, at the Ester Lee Motel, in Linclon City with pre-booked reservations! For the best ocean/beach views, may I suggest you pre-booking Rooms 110 and 210? Make sure to do dinner at Mo's Seafood Restaurant on the Bay, just a few blocks south from the Ester Lee Motel! Mo's, is a MUST DO lunch or dinner restaurant, anywhere you see it on the Oregon Coast!

Day 4, wake up early and take Hiway 101 south along the scenic Oregon Coast. Travel Hiway 101 through Newport, Waldport and over the cliffs of the infamous and beautiful Cape Perpetua!
While at Cape Perpetua, make sure to stop-in to all the roadside parks and scenic overview sites! Make sure you have your cameras out and ready! Make sure to visit "The Devils Punchbowl" park and walk the nice paved park trails along the coastline, there!
Make sure to stop-in and check-out the world famous Sea Lion Caves! All this is easy access from Hiway 101, as you travel south over and around Cape Perpetua!

Travel Hiway 101 on south thru Florence, Oregon and stay on 101 and travel south into Reedsport, Oregon.

Just across the Hiway 101 Bridge that crosses the Umpqua River into Reedsport, on your left-hand side, you will find the turns to travel East on Hiway 38 to Roseburg, Oregon.
It should be about mid-day when you reach Reedsport and there are any number of Restaurants there where you can eat a good lunch! (Of course, there are great mom & pop restaurants and plenty of fast food places and gas stations, shopping areas, curio shops, all along Hiway 101).

Then, after lunch in Reedsport, get on Hiway 38 and travel East up-river along the famous Umpqua River Hiway. At Elkton, Oregon, follow the road signs to travel East on Hiway 138 to Sutherlin and Roseburg, Oregon. You will still be following the scenic Umpqua River most of the way.

When you get into Sutherlin, Oregon, take I-5 South, and go about 12 more miles to Roseburg, Oregon. There are any number of nice chain motels in Roseburg. Might I suggest a pre-booked nights stay in The Windmill Inn there?

Day 5, up early, get the directions at the motel, and a map, and take the easy turns in Roseburg to Hiway 138 East - The world famous Diamond Lake/ North Umpqua Hiway?

Once on Hiway 138 East through Glide, Oregon, you will follow the North Umpqua River deep into the Cascade Mountains.

Once many miles up Hiway 138 from Glide Oregon, there are many roadside forest service parks, easy access for you walk in. May I suggest Susan Creek Park, or The Narrows Park, or for sure take plenty of time to check-out Steamboat Falls?
Near Steamboat Falls, the great western novelist Zane Grey had a cabin, where he wrote The Rogue River Feud, novel. I think you can still see his cabin, if you watch for the signs!

Travel on up Hiway 138 until you reach Diamond Lake at the top of the Cascade Mountains. Stop by the Diamond Lake Lodge and get a hearty lunch! Make sure to walk the docks and check out Diamond Lake and the snow-capped mountain peaks all around you!

From the lodge, it is a short drive on up Hiway 138 to get to the entrance of Crater Lake National Park.

From the park road, drive on up to the world famous Crater Lake lodge.
Drive the Crater Rim Drive Road, if you can....see Crater Lake from all angles, one of the seven natural wonders of the world!

Drive back to Crater Lake Lodge and once you are ready to leave, follow the signs to the road that will take you into Medford, Oregon.

Once in Medford, spend the night at any number of chain motels, the one you have pre-booked, along I-5 somewhere.

Day 6, why not get up early and Travel I-5 North a few miles to Grants Pass, Oregon?

Once in Grants Pass, drive to old Hiway 99 downtown and go south a short distance through town, until you get to the Hiway Bridge that crosses the Rogue River there. Along both sides of the river banks, you will see docks for the big river excursion boat trips down the Rogue River.

You can take one of the trips a few miles down river and back and spend a few hours of fun and see some gorgeous scenery!

If you pre-book the boat rides and get there early enough, you can be back into Grants Pass by mid-day. There are a number of great mom & pop restaurants in Grants Pass you won't want to miss-out on, for lunch!

IF you choose not to do the boat rides on the river, why not then
travel down the river on the Highway and go tour The Oregon Caves National Monument, if you want? Those caves are phenominal! Make sure to wear jeans and a warm jacket if you are planning on going through the Oregon Caves! You'll need em, for SURE!

At the end of the day you'll come back to Medford, Oregon and either stay at your motel another night there, or choose to continue on south on I-5 and go to Ashland, Oregon.

Once in Ashland, make sure to visit Lithia Park and why not take-in a play at the famous Shakesperian Festival Theatre or the Bowmar Theatre while in town? Make sure to taste some of Ashlands famous Lithia Waters, before you leave town.

You can either choose to pre-book a motel in Ashland, Oregon, or travel north on I-5 to the motel in Medford, Oregon.

Day 7, what you do now, depends on when you actually have to fly out of Oregon! If you don't have to leave until day 8, then there is still much fun you can have in the Medford, Oregon area!

If you have done your travel planning ahead of time and well, why not get tickets for a music concert day 7 night, at the Britt Festival Outdoor Aampitheatre in Jacksonville, Oregon? There is always great world-class music concerts going on at the Britt Festival in the summertime! Great Fun!

So, IF you don't have to fly-out of Oregon on day 7, why not travel a few short miles from Medford, to Jacksonville, Oregon and walk the city streets and relive the Gold Rush hey-days of this little late 1800's mining town? Check-out the museums there, and make sure to eat at the mom & pop restaurants there that serve some of the best food in Oregon! Once you've done enough sight seeing in Jacksonville, it should be about time for the concert at the Britt!

After the concert, return to Medford to your motel.

Day 7 or 8 you can catch any number of flights and air connections to any major city in the US, from the Medford Aiport. I know there will be at least direct connections to San Francisco airport, or north to PDX or Seattle and from those airports, anywhere in the world you want to go!

In all the car rental traveling, I tried not to have you on-the-road more than 3-4 hours at a time, before lunch break and then not over 2-3 hours more car travel to the next nights motel destination!

If you have 8 days in Oregon, you might want to book a motel in Reedsport, Oregon at the end of Day 4.
On Day 5, you can easily drive from Reedsport, Oregon to Roseburg Oregon in 2-3 hours time. Lunch in Roseburg and travel on up to Diamond Lake Lodge in 2-3 more hours time. Pre-book a stay at Diamond Lake Lodge Day 5 night.

Day 6, get up early, drive into Crater Lake NP and take all morning and early afternoon to check-out that NP. It's only about another 2 hours drive into Medford, Oregon.

Day 7 you can got to Grants Pass and take a boat ride, or go see the Oregon Caves and still get back to your motel in Medford in plenty of time to get a good nights rest.
You can fly-out of Medford Airpot on Day 8. Adjust your intinerary any way you want.
But the first 8-day itinerary will get you to some of the most scenic and best sights Oregon has to offer!

So how does this sound to you folks?

Hope this helps you out some!

jibboom1 is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 07:25 PM
Join Date: Nov 2005
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I had a lovely stay for three nights at the Villa Columbia (www.villacolumbia.com)in Hood River last fall. Right in/near downtown so you can walk to restaurants and shops if you wish. Brian's Pour House was my dinner choice two nights, nice staff and good food. Loved the whole area! Have a great trip!
tahoekr is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 09:19 PM
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bf, thanks for the info.

How's about 138 along the Umpqua river? Easy drive? On google earth, it looks a bit more windy than 58?
travelinandgolfin is offline  
Mar 6th, 2008, 10:02 PM
Join Date: Feb 2008
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Re: How's about 138 along the Umpqua river? Easy drive? On google earth, it looks a bit more windy than 58?
If I were in Eugene I might be tempted to go 58, but 138 isn't much longer because you can zip down to Roseburg on I-5 and east then up 138 is way prettier with waterfalls and the North Umpqua River - it is truly a beautiful drive. Windy - some but mostly 55mph as with Hwy58. Did you say "going in May" somewhere?? North entrance to Crater Lake will still be closed so 138 to 230 to 62 is your best route in. Try to head west on 62 and see the Upper Rogue on your way back out if possible too.
bfrazier is offline  
Mar 7th, 2008, 06:51 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
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No idsrespect meant, but a few comments on jibboom1's itinterary.

If you head out to the gorge, do not take I-84 to Multnomah Falls. Get off at either exit 17 (troutdale) or exit 22(corbett) and take the old scenic highway to Multnomah Falls. The scenery is a thousand times better than from the freeway, and you can stop at some pretty great places along the way.

Also, staying at Jantzen Beach area would be the last place I would suggest for a visitor.

And for getting onto HWY 99 from 217, no way would I do that. It is stop and go all the way through Tigard. Much better to head all the way down til I-5 and get off at either of the Wilsonville exits and then cut over to 99W.
mms is offline  

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