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April is Hood River Valley Blossom Time!

Posted on March 1st, 2016 in Festivals in Portland, Oregon, Outdoor Adventures in Portland, Wine Country.

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Hood River Valley Blossom Time!

Hood River Valley Blossom Time

Date: April 2016

Starting in early April, the cherry, apple and pear trees in the Hood River valley welcome spring’s return by releasing vibrant pink and white flowers. They start in the lower elevations and, like a domino effect, move up the valley creating a patchwork of color.

The area celebrates spring with the annual Hood River Valley Blossom Time, which takes place throughout April. Visit Hood River in April and enjoy family-friendly farm events, craft shows, culinary treats, wine and cider tasting, and the Hood River County Hard- Pressed Cider Fest.

One of the best ways to enjoy Blossom Time is to drive the Hood River County Fruit Loop, a gorgeous 35-mile drive that follows the county’s Scenic Tour Route and passes the valley’s plethora of orchards, wineries and farms.

Stop along the way to pick up baked goods, preserves, yarn, fresh produce, wine, cider and more. Download The Blossom Time event guide at hoodriver.org — you’ll see there’s something for everyone.

Here are a few of the 2016 Blossom Time events:

Hood River Hard-Pressed Cider Fest

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Now in its third year, the Hood River Hard-Pressed Cider Fest gives seasoned and novice cider drinkers alike the chance to sample cider from Hood River County’s very own cider makers, as well as a variety of additional Northwest cideries. More than 20 cideries participate, with more than 38 ciders on tap. The daylong event also features local food trucks, a kids area and a line-up of local music, from bluegrass to classic rock – guaranteeing a great time for the whole family.

Passport Gorge Grapes Weekend

Explore the essence of what makes the Columbia Gorge Wine Region “a world of wine in 40 miles.” With so much diversity of climate and soil, the Gorge has the ability to grow many unique varietals, from the familiar to the obscure. Purchase a Passport and use it throughout the month of April to take advantage of exclusive offers, incredible discounts and unique experiences at 24 Gorge wineries. Your passport will also allow you to access three very special, wine-focused weekend events at participating wineries.

Gorge Artists Open Studios

Now in its tenth year, Gorge Artists Open Studios Tour provides opportunities for the public to experience and enjoy art in the Columbia River Gorge. The tour is free and self-guided. Detailed maps are available online and at the Hood River County Chamber of Commerce Visitor Center. The artist roster for 2016 features a variety of work including painting, drawing, jewelry, glass, sculpture photography, textiles, fiber. Artists’ studios are located throughout the mid-Columbia from Cascade Locks to The Dalles and from Parkdale, Oregon to Trout Lake, Washington. April 22-24, 2016 gorgeartists.org

Hood River County Fair Blossom Craft Show

Hood River Fairgrounds, 3020 WyEast Rd., Hood River

This annual craft show and plant sale at the Hood River Fairgrounds includes more than 125 vendors selling jewelry, plants, clothing, baked goods, photos, paintings, metal art, garden art, and wine tastings. The annual quilt show includes more than 100 beautiful quilts. With lots more to see and do, you won’t want to miss this annual celebration of local art and craft.

 

 


Check out the Holiday Events in and around Portland!

Posted on November 18th, 2015 in Festivals in Portland, Food & Recipes, Oregon, Portland, Wine Country.

TRAVEL OREGON


Ecotours of Oregon

Posted on June 16th, 2014 in History of Portland, Oregon, Portland, Self-guided Tours of Portland Oregon, Wine Country.

Sightseeing and Nature Day Tours of Oregon and SW Washington for individuals, small groups and conventions.  Tours include door-to-door transportation from the Portland Oregon USA metro area. Here is an example of their great tours:

Eco Tours of Oregon Columbia River Gorge Waterfalls/Mount Hood “Loop” Tour

The Columbia River Gorge Waterfalls Tour is usually combined with a “loop” around Mount Hood, Oregon’s tallest mountain. This tour is normally scheduled from 9 AM to 5:30 PM. The following is a sample itinerary. Full day $80.00 each. Group discounts available for 30+ guests.
9:00 AM Pick up at your hotel or location. Head east to the sea-level 4000 foot deep Columbia Gorge, which cuts through the Cascade Mountains by the Columbia River.
9:35 AM Our first stop will be Chanticleer Point. Situated 700 feet above the mighty Columbia River, we’ll be able to see incredible views overlooking the Columbia River, Washington State and the Oregon side of the gorge.

Click for view of the Columbia River Gorge
9:50 AM Stop at the historic Vista House for a spectacular thirty-mile view of the river and a rest stop with interesting historic photography and native wildflower exhibits.
10:20 AM Head further east on the “Old Scenic Highway” while you learn about the history of the first mountain highway of the west. We’ll stop at several waterfalls with interesting names like Latourell, Wahkeena, Multnomah and Horsetail for short walks or longer hikes (you choose), quiet reflection and photo opportunities.
11:00 AM Guests always enjoy the visit to Multnomah Falls, Oregon’s most famous and tallest waterfall at 620 feet. EcoTours will provide plenty of time for you to enjoy the ten-minute walk up to the Benson Bridge between the lower and upper falls for views and photos, and to visit the Nature Center and Gift Shop.

Click for view of Multnomah Falls
11:30 AM Still heading east, we’ll discuss the life cycle of Pacific Northwest Salmon en route to the Bonneville Dam, where we may see migrating adult salmon through the fish-viewing windows and in the fish ladders.
12:30 PM Lunch time will be spent at Hood River, “the windsurfing capitol of the U.S.A.” We’ll drive you through downtown area and point out some of our favorite restaurants, then leave you on your own to eat and look and browse through this quaint, compact town.
1:30 PM After lunch, we’ll head through the picturesque Hood River Valley possible stopping at local fruit stands to sample locally-grown cherries, berries, pears and apples. While climbing Mount Hood’s southeast flank, you will learn about Oregon’s diverse ecosystems as the scenery changes from the dry eastside Cascades featuring ponderosa pine forests, to the lush westside forests of douglas fir, cedar and hemlock. Many guests enjoy optional stop to see a portion of the original Oregon Trail as we continue the drive to the high alpine forests of Mount Hood’s upper elevations. NOTE: If road conditions get dangerous in winter, we may not make it into the higher mountain areas. If this happens, we will take the guests up to the snow and then head back for more sightseeing in the Eastern Columbia Gorge Area. The Eastern Columbia Gorge offers great beautiful dry desert mountain views and historical areas. We may cross the Columbia River into Washington State for additional terrific photo stops. We finish the tour at about the same time if we follow the alternate winter itinerary (5:30 PM).
3:30 PM Arrive at the pinnacle of our day, Timberline Lodge, at 6000 feet. Here, you’ll be treated to incredible high alpine views of snow-capped Mount Hood and the surrounding Cascades. Guests enjoy a walk through the historic lodge and the trails with sweeping views of the Cascade Range.

Click for a view of the South side of Mt. Hood
4:00 PM On our drive back to Portland, we’ll pass through beautiful mountainous terrain and quaint small towns into the fertile agricultural fields of the Willamette Valley.
5:30 PM Arrive back at your hotel or home.
The cost of this day tour is $80.00 each. Cost includes door-to-door transportation and the interpretive naturalist services of your ecotour guide. Group discounts available for 30+ guests.Recent recommendations.It was a wonderful tour and you were great to do business with! Benjamin Cuker, Ph.D. Professor of Marine & Environmental Science American Society of Limnology and Oceanography Hampton University Hampton, VA 23668

Eco Tours of Oregon Day Tours 9025 N Allegheny Ave., Portland, OR 97203
Phone
Toll Free
Fax
503-245-1428
888-TOURS-33
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Cyclists — A Great Day of Touring Oregon Wine Country Plus Treat Yourself to a Fabulous Brunch at Eola Hills Winery

Posted on July 25th, 2011 in Biking in Portland Oregon, Events at the B & B, Festivals in Portland, Food & Recipes, Oregon, Portland, Self-guided Tours of Portland Oregon, Wine Country.

Buena Vista Ferry

Today, I completed my first 2011 MAC Annual Wine Ride  touring Oregon wine country and treating myself to a fabulous made-to-order gourmet brunch — without guilt!

Starting at the Eola Hills Winery in Rickreall, Oregon I wandered along 36.8 miles of scenic Polk County Wine Country, through the town of Independence and across the Willamette River on the historic Buena Vista ferry and then made a loop back to the winery.  As I approached the ferry crossing,  I spotted an osprey nests up on the platforms and along the route was up close and personal with two turkey buzzards feasting on a dead rabbit just a few feet from me as I crossed the dead carcass in the road.  This was just an incredible day in Oregon to be cycling.

For additional information about cycling in Oregon read this article from the NY Times.

Click here for the 2011_MAC_Wine_Ride_Map.

After my ride, I returned to the Eola Hills Winery for the reward of a fabulous  brunch prepared by Eola Hills Winery’s master chefs that include stuffed crepes, eggs Benedict, waffles, omelets, sauteed oysters, and more, along with a choice of wine or champagne.

Check out their wonderful Menu for July 24th:
Fresh Pan Fried Oysters from Willapa Bay
Washington
Roast Beef Sliders with Onions and Cheese
Fruit Supreme w/
Fresh Fruit, Yogurt and Granola
FOUR styles of Eggs Benedict; Ultimate,
Traditional, Seafood and Veggie
Stick to your Ribs Biscuits and
Gravy
Breakfast Ham
an Omelet Bar with about 20 toppings to choose
from
Belgian & Hazelnut Waffles along with Crepes
Country Fried
Potatoes
Stir Fried Veggies
Spring Mix Salad with Apples and
Strawberries
Platter of Watermelon
Cold Cucumber
Soup
homemade desserts and much more.

And don’t forget to belly up to the wine tasting bar to sample their wine selections and take home a bottle of their outstanding wines.    I particularly like their 2009 Pinot Gris and their Pacific Blanc a Oregon White Wine after a hot day biking the latter that I am sipping now as a draft this post.

The Eola Hills Winery is approximately 58 minutes from the Fulton House Bed & Breakfast in Portland, Oregon.  Bring your bikes and enjoy a day of cycling Oregon.