4th of July, Portland ORJuly 4 in the United States
The 4th of July is a special day here in the USA, a public holiday set aside to commemorate and celebrate its independence from the commonwealth.
We decided to use the quieter roads to explore the Columbia River Gorge. We started out by visiting one of our Cascade contacts Joe and his wife Kelly. We were made to feel very welcome but we were also very jealous of there little piece of country outside Portland.
From there we took the 84 out along the Columbia River to Bridal Veil, Multnomah Falls and the Cascade Locks. Again, the scenery and history is amazing with Multnomah being the 2nd highest continuous waterfall in the USA. It is still recovering after a bush fire that was started by illegal means in 2017.
We had lunch at Cascade Locks and watched the old paddle wheeler head out on a tour. Just a little too late for us to join it. All along this stretch the local native Americans have fishing platforms where they net Salmon coming upstream. The Bonneville Dam stretches across the river just below the locks and has been designed with a central sluice that allows salmon upstream access.
We crossed over the river here, a unique experience given that the bridge is open mesh on the roadway, so you can see straight through to the river below. On the northern side we visited Skamania and the Skamania Lodge where I had the privilege to stay during a sales meeting earlier in my time with Cascade. It has a massive lodge, golf course and a very high price tag.
We stopped opposite the dam and we noticed that there were some men building a new fishing platform. Whilst the structures look crude they are very strong. I was able to talk to them about how it was constructed. These men were Yakima tribe who have fished these waters for many years and whilst the building materials have changed they maintain old traditions.
During the day we passed many parks with the locals set up for their 4th July picnics, very very serious picnics with all manner of lounges barbeques and marquees.
Our route back to the motel took us along the Northern side of the river final picking up the road into Portland from Seattle. The sound of fireworks can be heard right across the city. Its now 8.45 PM and still light so the fireworks will not get underway for another hour yet. Carl and Paola have ventured into the city we have decided to sit that one out.
Portland city and some shop browsing tomorrow.Read more