The Columbia River cuts the only sea-level passageway through the Cascade Mountain Range marking the state lines between Oregon and Washington. The wide range of elevation and precipitation makes the Columbia River Gorge an extremely diverse and dynamic place. Ranging from 4,000 feet to sea level, and transitioning from 100 inches of precipitation to only 10 inches in 80 miles, the Gorge creates a diverse collection of ecosystems from the temperate rain forest on the western end, to the eastern grasslands, to a transitional dry woodland. in the middle.
The area is known for its high concentration of waterfalls, with over 90 on the Oregon side of the Gorge alone. Many are along the Historic Columbia River Highway which is where we spent a good deal of the day. We stopped at, and hiked to the top of several waterfalls – Latourell Falls (5th picture) a 249 foot plunge waterfall, Multnomah Falls (no picture because the sun was not in the right place) a 620 foot plunge waterfall, Bridal Veil Falls (6th picture) a tiered waterfall with a 100 foot, then 60 foot drop and Wakeena Falls (2nd picture is the bottom of it) a tiered waterfall with a 242 foot drop.
We felt that all that hiking to the top of all these falls deserved a snack and some beer, so we stopped at Full Sail Brewing in Hood River. Since we were in Hood River, we had to go to the lavendar farm there to try to get a picture of flowers and Mount Hood. We had to settle for Mount Adams with flowers, but Mount Adams is very pretty too.