Once again we were up at 7 a.m. When will this madness stop? I’m telling you, I need an intervention!
After checking e-mail and visiting with Julie and Doug Livingston for a few minutes when they came over to tell us goodbye, we left Pioneer RV Park in Hermiston about 10 a.m. and headed west on Interstate 84 for our 185 mile trip to Vancouver, Washington. The route parallels the Columbia River and I was looking forward to the trip through the beautiful Columbia River Gorge.
It’s a wonderfully scenic landscape of steep rocky hillsides and the deep blue Columbia River that offers breathtaking vistas everywhere you look.
There were quite a few short but steep downhill grades that made me appreciate the exhaust brake on our Winnebago.
But I didn’t appreciate this curvy bridge at all!
I also did not appreciate the strong wind, which beat us up the entire trip. Some of the gusts made keeping the motorhome in its lane a real chore and I had to slow way down. The Safe-T-Plus steering control I had installed last year, which is supposed to help us when driving in the wind, when big eighteen wheelers go flying past, and anytime we need to keep the motorhome pointed the right way down the highway has been a real disappointment. I am not at all impressed with it. It hasn’t seemed to have made a bit of difference. I still find myself fighting the steering wheel a lot of the time. I bet the wind farms that sit atop the hills around there really get a workout!
Several Hydroelectric dams have been built across the Columbia River to generate electrical power.
The river is a major transportation route and boats pushing barges like this are a common sight.
The Columbia is also popular with fishermen, campers, boaters and windsurfers. In several places we saw RVs parked along the shore, and Terry spotted these folks on their paddleboards.
There were also several bridges along our route and I was glad I didn’t have to drive across them.
As beautiful as the Gorge is, nothing can compare with the sight of 11,000 foot high Mount Hood towering over the surrounding landscape. Mount Hood is considered the Oregon volcano most likely to erupt like her sister Mount St. Helens did back in 1980.
Eventually we made our way to Portland and then crossed the Columbia on Interstate 205. The bridge is five or six lanes wide and I stayed in the middle and didn’t snivel once, because I couldn’t see the water down below or tell I wasn’t on terra firma all the way across.
We pulled into the Vancouver Elks lodge, which has fourteen back in RV sites with power and water, and paid for four nights at $15/night. We want to do some sightseeing locally and we are having our mail sent to us, care of the lodge.
The interstate is within spitting distance, and some people who have stayed here have complained about the traffic noise, but I have plans to sleep in tomorrow even if they are landing passenger jets and B-52 bombers out there!
Thought For The Day – Some people see more on a walk on the beach than others see on a trip around the world.