Hood River is easily reached by driving east from Portland, Ore., on Interstate 84, following the Columbia River. Hood River is about an hour's drive from Portland.
Things to do
If you're a devotee of outdoor recreation, you can do just about anything. There's windsurfing on the Columbia, mountain biking, road cycling, fishing, golfing, skiing on nearby Mount Hood, kayaking and rafting. For those who are less sports-minded, there are attractions such as the Mount Hood Railroad, which takes travelers from Hood River east into fruit-growing country, and the International Museum of Carousel.
The Columbia River Gorge, extending from the Portland suburb of Troutdale to the Deschutes River, is rich with scenic sights. The Historic Columbia River Scenic Highway takes travelers along basalt bluffs overlooking the Columbia -- offering breathtaking views. The road also leads past the 620-foot Multnomah Falls. There's great hiking on trails that lead from the gorge into the foothills of the Cascade Range.
Also worth a visit are the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center in The Dalles, the Hood River Historical Museum, the Bridge of the Gods in the town of Cascade Locks and the Bonneville Dam, where you can watch salmon swim upstream to spawn.
On the Net
Columbia Gorge Discovery Center: www.gorgediscovery.org.
Hood River County: www.hoodriver.org.