Then how about getting yourself and your fellow connoisseurs out to Portland — Portland, Oregon that is! Yes, believe it or not the City of Roses in rain-swept Oregon located in the pacific northwest of the United States has been quietly developing a reputation for itself in recent years by wine buffs in the know. Increasingly, small craft wineries located throughout the Willamette Valley have been moving their operations to Portland, pairing on-site facilities with tasting rooms so that they replicate what their counterparts in places such as the Napa Valley have been doing so successfully for some time.
Oregon has a lot to offer visitors who are not so familiar with what this great state has to offer. The skyline around Portland itself is dominated by the snow clad peak of Mount Hood which rises to a majestic 11, 249 feet. Part of the famous Cascade range, Mt. Hood is the highest peak in Oregon and indeed one of the most dramatic peak in the whole of North America because of the degree to which it dominates the surrounding landscape — being clearly visible from Portland, more than 50 miles away!
Oregon is tree country and if you love woods, then you’ll love this neck of the woods. Multnomah Falls located about midway along the majestic Columbia River Gorge which also doubles as the effective border between Oregon and Washington is a must see when driving east from Portland to Hood and The Dalles. Lovers of history will of course have heard about the Oregon trail which is the route that Lewis and Clarke pursued in their epic trek across the America of the early 1800’s, following the signing of the Louisiana Purchase by President Jefferson. Further south, you’ve got the magnificent Crater Lake; ski resorts such as Sun River and the Deshuttes River where you can even take the kids white-water rafting — as we did some 20 years ago or more. Pendleton, near the border with Idaho is also the location of a major rodeo event each year and one can’t of course ignore the beautiful pacific coastline of Western Oregon that runs right up from the Californian border to just beyond Portland itself.
Oregon has always epitomized the great outdoors but it’s growing reputation as a centre of viticultural excellence is beginning to add an extra layer of sophistication to this most welcoming of destinations