Field Stone Cottage Blog

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Introduction to Oregon

Today I am taking you to Oregon, my friends. Oregon is a state of contrasts. Eastern Oregon is dry, sagebrush kind of country where the wind blows and its hot in the summer but snow accumulates in the winter. Western Oregon is lush, wet, green country where anything and everything grows (except sagebrush and dryland plants). The climate is mild and accumulating snow in the winter is not the norm. Eight months of rain, mostly misty, light rain, is the normal winter weather pattern there. The reason the rain doesn't make it over to Eastern Oregon is the Cascade Mountains of which Mt. Hood is the most famous member. The mountains stop the clouds and cause them to drop their moisture on the western part of the state.

Here is the Columbia River which marks the border between Washington and Oregon as we arrive in Eastern Oregon. Note the predominance of brown in the landscape.
This is the Columbia River in the Portland area. We were actually on the Washington side, in Camas, for this shot but you can see Mt. Hood in this one even though its top is obscured by those clouds. And there's the green in the landscape.

Here we are in Astoria, Oregon, almost at the mouth of the Columbia River as it flows into the Pacific Ocean. Lots of green here too.

One last bit of info for today on the Columbia River. There is lots of major shipping on it up to Portland and it all has to pass over the very hazardous bar at the mouth of the river. There is a very interesting museum in Astoria that chronicles the maritime history of the area. It incorporates the light ship that used to mark the entrance to the mouth of the Columbia in the not too distant past. (Andy remembers it from his growing up years.) I highly recommend the museum should you visit Astoria. Here's a picture of the light ship.

3 comments:

ellen b. said...

I keep telling myself we need to turn right when we get to the border of Washington and Oregon and make the drive to Astoria! :0
Beautiful photos Dorothy...

Elle said...

I have a fascination with the lushness of Oregon. I dream of a vacation there one day, tucked away in those mountains. Thanks for the photos.

Willow said...

How well I know the Columbia River. As a child, I would drive up and down the highway, visit both Astoria and Cascade Locks. Even now when I go 'home' I have to take a trip 'up the gorge'.