First time paddling the Gorge. Our kayak guide book warned "...similar to open ocean conditions, paddling the Gorge may involve swells, swift current, heavy wind and large commercial boat traffic. It is not for the inexperienced." This scared the shit out of me but I've been wanting to boat up that joint for a couple years so screw it- all or nothing!
But first I need to make some coffee. On top of the car. The cup I got at the 'Dog Something or Other' in Hood River was good but I needed more caffeine.
We put in next to a steep boat ramp. Incident free!
Great day for a yak ride! We set sail around 10am- there was some shifting winds but nothing too scary.
Looking west towards the cliffs and Hood River about 12 miles away.
Looking east towards Biggs Junction. The high desert dwellers of Central North Oregon told David and Frosty of a great restaurant in Biggs Junction open late named "McDonald's." Unfortunately it is maybe 30+ river miles. Just too damn far to see what all the fuss is about.
I feel so insignificant. What's the meaning of it all? In this picture you can see the 'river in the river' we crossed a couple times. A point of land juts into the Columbia at Mayer and the blunt of the current wraps around. It creates a swift bumpy section that was interesting to fool around with. I got scared and wobbled about but made it through. Then we saw some shirtless heroes with dark red tans and sit-on-tops just ride that thing all the way to Lyle. Studs!
The beer holder was confused. What is this?
Looking to the south shore at the community of Rowena.
Some really cool houses right on the shore of the river. Some of them very nice expensive looking estates. Some of the a mowed lawn, a hammock and a storage shed for their canoes.
Nice newer place. You could sit their all day and look at the river and read and wonder about stuff. Drinking coffee until 3 or so and then switch over to beer!
There's also a few places like this. A tucked away cabin that looks like it hasn't changed for 100 years. Cool!
A little Dapper Dan for lunch! Can't hit Hood River without stopping here. We knew 4 people that were here including a childhood neighbor of Gina's. Small world?
After Double Mountain we walked down to the water front. Check out this hero on a unicycle! There was some other unicyclers studding around.
This picture doesn't really capture the spirit of the hustle and bustle of the Hood River waterfront on a weekend. It's a mad house and a pleasure to sit in the grass and watch hundreds of people walking around, kite boarding and wind surfing. The massive parking lot is full of campers and vans and there's a section of trailers offering up lessons and rentals for various outdoor sports. And there's a bar on the end of a dock surrounded by picnic tables. It's the perfect setting for a sports themed coming of age movie.