Turns out it is.
We left Sunday evening, which led to our first “sleeping in a rest-stop” experience. This one appropriately called “dead man’s pass”.
We drove through the gorge to get into the state, which made our first touristy stop “Horse tail falls”. Sure we could of gone onto the more popular, famous Multnomah type falls, but after Idaho anything seems breathtakingly gorgeous. And who needs crowds?
The fresh air, greenery and peacefulness of moving water is perfect for healing a weary travelers soul.
After that we slowly made our way to Corvallis. Maybe a little to eager lay down straight we stopped at Avery park for a nap.
The followed by a lovely meal at a friend’s house and then one of my favorite less known places near my home-town Corvallis. Kings Valley is best viewed near sunset and is the purest form of “my Oregon” that I know of. “My Oregon” being the Oregon I remember growing in, running in, driving on gravel roads for hours as my family explored every nook and cranny. Just forest.
Beazell Forest is always my first stop in Kings valley. It has some lovely moderate hikes straight into old forest, complete with bubbling brook. It also has this quaint empty house.
After a quick tromp we headed towards Fort Hoskins. Which includes a very old orchard and some gorgeous views.
Day 2: a tromp in downtown Corvallis.
Okay. So I only have one picture of my teenage stomping grounds. But who cares? We were having to much fun. The Carlson’s treated us to lunch at American Dream pizza. The website makes it look kitsch. But it is a cool kid staple of Corvallis life. Pizza that is so good I won’t even try to explain. But just know it is worth it.
Day 3: Portland, the city
We used airbnb.com to find accommodations in Portland for 2 days. The owners were kind enough to let us use their bikes. So we started off day 3 with a 14 mile bike ride twisting around highways, towns and forests on the outer edge of Portland. Then we set off into the big city starting with a lunch at Burger Guild. You probably know Portland Oregon is one of those “hip” cities. Don’t roll your eyes. We all know if it wasn’t for “hip” we wouldn’t have cool new forms of popular food. Take the Food truck. Without hipster cities the food truck would of never developed into more than just hotdogs and falafel.
Burger Guild. I don’t even know why we were compelled to find this among dozens of others but it was so worth it. Packed in a parking lot dedicated to food trucks, this under-reviewed gem has my new favorite burger. Shoot. I don’t even know what it is called. But all his burgers (yes it is just one man) are stuffed with delicious. Mine had kalamata olives, feta and peppers. Mr. Wood’s was filled with Muenster cheese, mushroom and some spicy pickled pepper mix. So good! If I had to build a pro/con list of moving to Portland Oregon, Burger Guild would weigh heavily in "Pro’s” column.
Oh what is that? Sweet potato fries dusted with fresh herbs? Oh thank you burger guild. Thank you very much.
I am tempted to turn the rest of this post into a food blog. But I won’t. Let’s move on.
Did you know you can take any public transportation around Portland Oregon all day for only $5? Yeah. You can. But Mr. Wood and I are crazy and drove in. Bonus, we got to stop by the mall. The train is actually quite nice though, and we rode that across the bridge.
We forgot to take pictures most of the day, because I just love wandering through a big city. And it is so fun to do with your spouse. Portland is part old, part new, part creepy, part gorgeous, so perfect for exploring.
We spent the afternoon walking through several districts, getting lost in Powell's book store. Stopping at fountains and parks and anthropologie. Oh, Boy’s Fort or “Manthropology” was a new favorite of mine. Part collection of aesthetically pleasing items for the male, part botanical shop. It smelled really good. Tired feet and Eye weary we meandered back towards place to rest, only to be deterred by ice-cream. “Salt and Straw” ice-cream to be specific. So creamy, so worth it.
With that, I will end. The rest of the trip will have to be documented in part 2. But don’t worry, we aren’t dragging this out into a trilogy.