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Where can we get the best view of the Wallowas?

There is a tramway at Wallowa Lake that goes up 3,700 feet to the summit of Mount Howard. The Wallowa Lake Tramway is the steepest tram in North America and ascends above the Wallowa Lake Village and Wallowa Lake. Taking the gondola gives you some of the most incredible views in Eastern Oregon. Back on the ground, you can extend your stay at some great campsites and cabins at Wallowa Lake.

Where can we go crabbing and boil our catch afterwards?

On the North Oregon Coast, one of the best places to go crabbing is Nehalem Bay. There, you will find Kelly’s Marina and Jetty Fishery, both of which offer crabbing gear rentals, crabbing docks or boat rentals and you can have your crab cooked just steps from where you caught it and enjoy the freshest crab ever.

Answered by Gary Hayes, Ask Oregon Coast Expert on April 20th, 2016 - Post Your Answer

What are the rules on wild foraging in forests?

My very simple, condensed answer about foraging is: as long as you are picking small amounts of non-endangered species for personal use, it’s most likely going to be fine. (i.e. picking a few berries or mushrooms while you’re hiking) Regulations depend on what you want to pick, where you’re picking it and how much you want to pick. Small amounts for personal use are usually okay, but check to know how much “personal use” is. Here are some sites that might help:

I hope all the red tape doesn’t discourage you; every forest ranger I’ve ever met wants nothing more than to see people out enjoying the forest, and the Sweet Home ranger district even leads hikes where they teach people how to forage!

Where are the best places to fish for sturgeon?

Sturgeon are an excellent sport fish and relatively plentiful so you are sure to have action and catch some fish. It is catch and release. There are two areas I would suggest for sturgeon.

At the Oregon Coast, head to Astoria at the mouth of the Columbia River in June and July. There is a lot of action with fish ranging from 30 inches to six feet and some larger.

Farther up the Columbia River in the Gorge, you can catch sturgeon near Troutdale/Portland and the Dalles from June through September. This fishery is mainly for the big females we call “oversize.”

My guide service takes fishing trips out of Astoria. For the Columbia River Gorge, you might want to contact Sky’s Guide Service or Sturgeon River Monsters.

Answered by David Johnson, Ask Oregon Fishing Expert on April 15th, 2016 - Post Your Answer

Are there really tree house hotels in Oregon?

Yes, here in Southern Oregon, we have the amazing Out ‘n About Treesort, filled with tree houses to stay overnight in. We had a wonderful experience there with kids, but of course it’s just as magical for adults. You’ll want to check the official website for up-to-date information on pricing.

The treesort is located outside of Cave Junction, Oregon, off Highway 199 (Redwood Highway). I would definitely suggest pairing a stay there with a visit to the nearby Oregon Caves National Monument or to the redwood groves on the Oregon Coast. Our favorite place is at Alfred Loab State Park on the Chetco River.

Astoria is a port of call for our cruise ship — can we walk into town from the dock?

It is a little over a mile from Astoria’s cruise ship dock to the heart of downtown Astoria. It is about 1.3 miles to the beginning of Astoria’s main downtown commercial district and about two miles to the Columbia River Maritime Museum, Astoria’s largest attraction on the riverfront.This can be a pleasant walk along Astoria’s paved Riverwalk that passes restaurants, brew pubs and working waterfront businesses. Another fun transportation option is Astoria’s historic riverfront trolley that runs parallel to the Riverwalk.

There is bus service from the Port of Astoria to downtown departing every 15 minutes (route 11). An all day pass is available for $7 that includes on and off privileges and is good for the trolley too. An all day pass for the trolley is only $2, but check the schedule to make sure it fits your needs (typically noon to 6 p.m. in spring and summer, but it’s weather dependent too).

Answered by Gary Hayes, Ask Oregon Coast Expert on April 12th, 2016 - Post Your Answer

Where are the best places to watch the sunset near Salem?

What a great question! Here are my ideas for good sunsets near Salem.

  1. Willamette Valley Vineyards is just south of Salem is on a hill facing west toward the Jory hills and the Coast range. The west facing views at Willamette Valley Vineyards are great any time of day, but when the sun is setting on a clear day  it’s really spectacular. Sitting on their patio with a bottle of wine watching the sun set…not a bad way to end the day.

 

  1. Minto-Brown Island Park is huge, full of trails and secluded spots, and it borders the Willamette River along the entire western boundary of the park. Take a trail down to the riverbank and you can get some nice sunset views with the colors reflecting on the river.

 

  1. Baskett Slough Wildlife Refuge is located west of Salem (near Dallas) off of Highway 22. It’s great natural area with several trails, looking westward toward the Coast Range. I haven’t done it myself, but I’ve heard the hike to the Rich Guadnagno Observation Platform gives you nice sunset views from the top of Baskett Butte.

 

  1. Van Duzer Vineyard is very close to the Baskett Slough wildlife refuge and a great place to reward yourself with a glass of wine after a hike. Their tasting room is up on top of a hill with beautiful westward views.

 

Happy sunset watching! I hope you find some great views.

What are the best mountain bike areas in Oregon?

There are SO many places in Oregon to mountain bike, but I’ll try to narrow them down to the BEST. Are you ready?

Top 5 recommendations:

  1. McKenzie River Trail
  2. Oakridge — Alpine Trail
  3. Sandy Ridge Trail
  4. Surveyors Ridge
  5. Tiddlywinks

Honorable Mentions:

  1. Oakridge — Tire Mountain or Waldo Lake
  2. Tyler’s Traverse
  3. North Umpqua Trail
  4. Black Rock
  5. Post Canyon

Google any of these and your mind might explode. There are just so many awesome places to go. In fact, if you haven’t been to Oakridge, I just went and it blew my mind. There are mountain bike trails, waterfalls, hot springs, and a proper English pub called the Local 180.

Let me know if you have any questions or need to find a place to rent a mountain bike. The Mountain Shop in NE Portland is probably your best bet for a quality ride.

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Can you swim in Crater Lake?

Good question! Short answer, yes, but there is actually only one place where it is safe and legal to get down to the lake shore and swim at Crater Lake National Park. It is the Cleetwood Cove Trail, which usually opens mid to late June. The Cleetwood trail is just over one mile long (each way) and quite steep, dropping nearly 700 feet down to the lake shore. Visitors are welcome to swim in the lake from the shoreline at the end of this trail. There’s really no other access, since Crater Lake is so ‘deep and steep.’

What kind of weather can we expect at the Coast in April?

April is a great time for traveling the Oregon Coast. Spring in general is known for lush growth, blooming plants and shrubs, abundant wildlife and great bird watching. High temperatures in April average in the mid to high 50s and low temperatures average mostly in the low 40s. Our maritime climate is unpredictable, so you will want to be prepared for unseasonably warm or cooler temperatures. You should always be prepared for showers as April rainfall totals up to five or six-plus inches for the month. That’s downright dry compared to our real rainy season between November and February!

Answered by Gary Hayes, Ask Oregon Coast Expert on April 4th, 2016 - Post Your Answer
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