24 THE PORTLAND GUIDE | Discover Oregon Roadtrips
Just a 5-minute drive (two miles) from
downtown La Grande is the Mount Emily
Recreation Area, open year-round for
hiking, trail-running, mountain-biking and
equestrian use. Wildlife lovers here watch for
deer, elk, black bears and countless varieties
of birds. Over the ridge, recreational vehicle
riders can experience miles of forest trails.
Whichever way you travel, the views of the
Grande Ronde Valley and the Eagle Cap
Wilderness area from the flanks of Mount
Emily are breathtaking. Clear blue skies
and refreshingly crisp nights, make the
eastern side of Oregon a perfect recreational
For information and events:
www.visitbaker.com; www.eova.com; www.
The Willamette Valley stretches 110 miles along
the banks of the Willamette River and is home to
some of the nation’s best vineyards, tasting rooms
and prize-winning wines. In the northern part of
the Willamette Valley is Oregon City, the official
end of the Oregon Trail. While here, learn about
Oregon’s early settlers at The End of the Oregon
Trail Interpretive Center. Head further south
along I-5 and visit The Oregon Garden with more
than 20 specialty gardens, including waterfalls,
fountains, a 400-year-old Signature Oak, a NW
Garden, and pet garden. Then see the state capitol
of Salem and while exploring this area, try and spot
the region’s 33 historical covered bridges.
For information and events: www.albanyvisitors.com;
www.visitcorvallis.com; www.eugenecascadescoast.org; www.
At the convergence of the Cascade and
Siskiyou Mountains lies Ashland, a town that
is truly unique and authentic. Experience it all
here— scenic and historic beauty, culinary
delights and outdoor recreation. If you enjoy
the performing arts, Ashland is also the home
of the famous Oregon Shakespeare Festival.
Recreationally, Southern Oregon claims
the renowned Crater Lake National Park—
the result of Mt. Mazama blowing its top
some 7,000 years ago, creating America’s
deepest lake. Heading further west, are the
Cascades, the Oregon Coast and Colliding
Rivers—the only place in the world where
rivers actually collide. White-water rafters can
challenge themselves on the Rogue River,
declared “Wild and Scenic” in 1968.
For information and events:
Oregon’s High Desert Country offers 300 days of
sun per year for hiking, white-water rafting, skiing,
golfing, rock-climbing, biking and fly-fishing. The
landscape features rugged lava flows, sage-scented
high desert, snow-covered peaks, dense forests,
sparkling alpine lakes and adventure-filled rivers.
Golfers delight in the High Desert region,
with over 25 spectactacular courses to choose
from. Scenic sites around the region include
Suttle Lake, just west of Sisters, with trails for
hikers, mountain bikers and bald eagle watchers.
The Newberry National Volcanic Monument lies
within the Deschutes National Forest south of
Bend. This ancient caldera is home to Paulina
and East Lakes, and Smith Rock State Park, with
Morning Glory Wall and Monkey Face.
For information and events: www.visitbend.com;