Two Cool Oregon Road Trips
When I visited home last year I finally had the chance to scan the rest of my old pre-digital pics, resulting in a series of photo posts of travels past. Here’s a bunch of pics from two day-trips we took out of Portland, Oregon during our USA road trip (full story here, including the crazy hillbilly who freaked us out in the Rockies)
We stayed in Portland for a few days with our friend’s friends, while our other friend’s parents (whose van we were using for the trip) came to hang out with us and check out Portland’s craft beer and northwest Oregon’s scenery.
The first day drive we took was a loop out to Mt Hood and then back to the city along the Columbia River. The main stops were the Timberline Lodge high on Mt Hood, and Multnomah Falls in the Columbia River Gorge.
Timberline Lodge was used for the exterior shots of the hotel in The Shining, but its other claim to fame is having America’s only year-round ski resort thanks to the Palmer Glacier. It also commands sweeping views of the surrounding terrain (the photo at the top was from the Timberline car park)
From there we drove down to the Columbia River and followed it back to Portland, stopping for a quick hike at the spectacular Multnomah Falls. It’s a 2-tier waterfall with a combined height of 189m, we didn’t have time to hike right to the top but the shorter hike up to the bridge was nice. If you’re looking for a good day-trip out of Portland and you have wheels, a loop round Mt Hood and Multnomah Falls is a good call.
The other trip we took was to Astoria (also on the river but in the other direction, towards the ocean) and on to Cannon Beach on the coast. Astoria’s a pretty little town and the beach is a stunner, but the real motivation for this was 80s childhood movie geekery. Recognise this house?
It’s the legendary Goonies house which is in Astoria, just round the corner from this school:
…which was the school in Kindergarten Cop. A bunch of other movies were also filmed there, including another 80s classic Short Circuit and the American remake of Japanese horror The Ring.
Astoria’s a popular place with Hollywood producers, and to this day movie nerds visit the town because of the Goonies (you’re asked to keep a respectful distance from the house, but are welcome to go have a look and take pics from the road)
And if you recognised the house, you definitely recognise the beach:
That massive rock that lines up with the medallion at the end of the movie is Haystack Rock. But even if you don’t care about the Goonies, it’s a beautiful spot and worth visiting.
The driving time’s about 3.5 to 4 hours for each of these routes, so each one makes a pretty full day out with stops. I knew very little about Oregon before going there, but I’m glad we did!