Category Archives: Columbia River Gorge

Bald Eagles

Bald Eagles arrive at The Dalles Dam

A fellow birder reported seeing about 80 Bald Eagles near The Dalles Dam on the Columbia River.  We took a ride up to see them for ourselves and although we didn’t see 80 we did count at least 40.  Bald eagles migrate south each winter in search of food and the Columbia River provides an excellent food source.  Westrick Park, near the dam and across from the visitor center, seems to be a favorite winter vacation spot.  The Dalles Dam Visitor Center is a popular site for visitors to see bald eagles in their natural habitat. Join park rangers weekends in January,  9 a.m. to 2 p.m., for an educational opportunity to learn about raptors and other migratory birds and experience seeing them in the wild!  It’s cold along the river, Dress accordingly and be prepared for possible snow on the trails that take you down for a closer look at the Convocation of Eagles on the water’s edge.

Reserve your stay at Hood River Bed and Breakfast and plan to spend a day in The Dalles.  The Columbia Gorge Discovery center offers the inspiring Raptor Program, Downtown you’ll find great restaurants, brew pubs, shopping, wineries and of course, the Bald Eagles along the River. To expand your Columbia Gorge Birding experience we have maps of the Oregon Cascade Birding Trails on hand.

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

Old Parkdale Inn

Old Parkdale Inn Offers lodging near Mt Hood and the Columbia River Gorge

The Old Parkdale Inn is located in the Upper Hood River Valley on the north slope of Oregon’s tallest peak, Mt. Hood, in the quaint town of Parkdale.  Outdoor adventure, farms, wineries and fine dining are nearby.  The complete privacy of the inn and the serene gardens are perfect for romantic and restful getaways.

All three Old Parkdale Inn well appointed, Oregon themed rooms have queen beds, private baths, a mini fridge, microwave, and coffee machine with a large selection of teas, coffee, and cocoa.  The rooms are also equipped with a wall mounted flat screen TV with satellite reception, DVDs, hairdryer, alarm clock, fans, and heaters.

Driving an Electric Vehicle?  Old Parkdale Inn has two EV chargers, one Tesla and one ClipperCreek offered as an amenity for their guests.  They are also will be available to those passing through Parkdale along the Mt Hood and Columbia Gorge Electric Byway.

The Old Parkdale Inn is equipped with FREE Wireless internet in the house.  You’ll enjoy a hearty Northwest breakfast presenting and savoring Hood River delicacies in the Inn’s dining room.   As members of the Hood River Organics Community Supported Agriculture group a box of fresh, locally grown organic fruits and vegetables is delivered to the inn once a week.  This produce, along with fresh herbs from the gardens and fruits and vegetables from the local farm stands and farmer’s markets, are used as ingredients in the breakfasts served every morning along with locally roasted organic coffee.

For the outdoor enthusiast Mt. Hood Meadows Ski Resort, Timberline Ski Area, Cooper Spur Mountain Resort, the Columbia River Gorge are all just minutes away and outdoor adventures abound.  The Inn partners with Timberline Ski areas and offers discount lift vouchers directly to overnight guests.

For the wine lover visit “A World of Wine in 40 miles” on the backroads of the Columbia Gorge wine growing region.  And breweries!  Oregon has the most small artisan breweries per capita than any other state in the union!   Solera Brewery is walking distance down the street.

Get to know our State like a local; stay with one of our nearly 100 hosts and experience romantic getaways, historic treasures, and tucked away rustic retreats.  Whether your trip is for a quiet escape to a quaint rural or coastal town, taking in Oregon Geotourism, for a World Class City experience, or for a new spin on business travel, you can be assured of combining gracious hospitality with ambiance by staying at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

The Historic Columbia River Highway between Bridal Veil and Ainsworth State Park has reopened.  This section of highway has been closed since the 2017 Eagle Creek Fire.  Visit TripCheck.com for current road conditions.  Winter weather may force closures of the Historic Highway.  You can now drive The Highway between Exit 22, Crown Point and Vista House to Exit 35 off of Interstate 84.

Imagine crafting a national treasure on a landscape so beautiful that each viewpoint is protected and people come from all over the world to marvel at its perfection. This is the Historic Columbia River Highway.  Whether you are seeing it for the first time or you know every inch by heart, each time you drive, bike, or hike along the Historic Highway, you begin the journey anew.

Construction of the Historic Columbia River Highway began in 1913 and was considered one of the greatest engineering feats of the modern age.

As its name implies, the Byway is incredibly rich in cultural history.  This stretch of the Columbia once served as fishing and meeting grounds for the many indigenous peoples of the Columbia Basin.  Oregon Trail Pioneers also traveled down the Columbia in the mid 1800s.

When the highway first opened in 1916, Teddy Roosevelt praised its scenic grandeur and remarkable engineering. And The Illustrated London News went on to call it “the king of roads.” With its mossy stone walls and graceful viaducts winding past dozens of waterfalls, this All-American Road still reigns as one of the world’s most glorious drives.’

Oregon has more designated scenic byways and tour routes than any other state.  The Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is the only State B&B Association and a welcoming inn awaits you as you travel the backroads.  Enjoy our series of scenic bikeways, byways, and tours posts, helping you to create amazing getaways and tours in Oregon.  Thanks Travel Oregon for sharing this information

Start planning your road trip through the Columbia River Gorge by booking a room at either a Portland or Mt Hood Region bed and breakfast of the Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

Aebleskiver

The Aebleskiver is a traditional Danish dessert kind of like doughnut holes only sweeter.

The Aebleskiver is cooked in a cast iron pan that resembles an egg poacher. A symbol of community and hospitality, they are very popular at Scandinavian charity and open-air events.  And well received at the Old Parkdale Inn breakfast table, located in one of the largest apple and pear grower regions in Oregon.

Æbleskiver Ingredients

  • 2 egg white
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 Tbs white sugar
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 4 Tbs melted butter
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • Butter for frying

In a clean glass or metal bowl, beat the egg whites with an electric mixer until they can hold a stiff peak. Set aside.

Mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, baking soda, sugar, egg yolks, melted butter and buttermilk at one time and beat until smooth. Gently fold in the egg whites last.

AebleskiverPlace the Aebleskiver pan on your stove top.  Turn on the heat.  The innkeeper brushes each cup with some melted butter and gets it nice and hot.  Pour about a tablespoon of the batter into each cup. Here’s where you can add a dab of jam, apple butter, chocolate chips, finely chopped apples, maybe a banana slice.  Use your imagination.  Cover the filling with about another tablespoon of batter and as soon as they get bubbly around the edge turn them quickly.  A fork or chopsticks work good for this.  Once the second side has cooked she rolls them in the cup to keep it from burning.

Dust with Powdered Sugar or glaze and serve with maple syrup and jam.

The Old Parkdale Inn is located in the Upper Hood River Valley on the north slope of Oregon’s tallest peak, Mt. Hood, in the quaint town of Parkdale.  Outdoor adventure, farms, wineries and fine dining are nearby.  The complete privacy of the inn and the serene gardens are perfect for romantic and restful getaways.

The innkeepers of the Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild are ready to share Oregon, it’s environment, culture, and heritage with you. Get to know our State like a local; stay with one of our nearly 100 hosts in any one of our many regions. Experience romantic getaways, historic treasures, and tucked away rustic retreats.  Whether your trip is for a quiet escape to a quaint rural or coastal town, taking in Oregon Geotourism, for a World Class City experience, or for a new spin on business travel, you can be assured of combining gracious hospitality with ambiance by staying at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

French Toast

Nation French Toast Day is November 28

Remember the orange popsicle filled with vanilla ice cream?  Who didn’t love them then and who doesn’t still love them now?  Here at the Old Parkdale Inn Bed and Breakfast we regularly order a case of fresh Organic Valencia Oranges to use in Orange Ricotta Pancakes, Fresh Orange Smoothies, Fruit Salads and more.  Recently I made this creamy French Toast with a Gluten Free White Bread but I prefer using a fresh Challah Bread.  Challah makes the best French Toast and when combined with cream cheese, vanilla and orange, a dreamy

Creamy Orange French Toast

In a small bowl cream together 1/2 tsp orange zest, 1 tsp sugar and 4 oz softened cream cheese

In another bowl Whip together:

  • 3 large eggs
  • ½ tsp vanilla extract
  • zest from a orange
  • juice from that orange
  • cup of milk
  • 2 Tbsp heavy cream
  • 2 tsp sugar

Spread the cream cheese mixture between two slices of bread.  I like to lay the sandwiches on a cookie sheet where the milk and egg mixture has been poured, flipping them after about 5 minutes.  The type of bread you are using will determine how long to soak.  Dryer bread a little longer that a very moist bread like Challah. Fry on a hot griddle until golden, about 3-5 minutes on each side.

Meanwhile, combine fresh orange juice from half an orange, 1/2 cup maple syrup and 1/2 tsp vanilla extract in a small sauce pot. Bring to simmer and take off heat.

Serve piping hot garnished with thinly slices oranges and a dusting of powdered sugar.

You can adjust this recipe to satisfy dietary needs.  I’ve used coconut or almond milk for lactose intolerant guests. A Vanilla Soy Creamer adds flavor. There are some very good non dairy cream cheese products available.

The Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

Oregon Trail

The Historic Oregon Trail turns 175 in 2018.  Time for you to hit the highway, inspire your own pioneer spirit, stand in the actual wagon ruts pioneers left behind, and visit the numerous interpretive sites, monuments and cultural centers along the way.

The Oregon Trail traversed 2,170 miles of what today is Missouri, Kansas, Nebraska, Wyoming, Idaho and Oregon.  Travel the Oregon National Historic Trail through Oregon, from Idaho, along the Columbia River and around Mt Hood.

There are several trail sights from the Idaho border to Baker City, the National Historic Oregon Trail Interpretive Center offers living history demonstrations, interpretive programs, exhibits, multi-media presentations, special events, and more than four miles of interpretive trails.  From the top of Flagstaff Hill you can still see the trail running out across the plains.  Lodging in Baker City, Oregon: Baker City Blue Door

The cemeteries along the route reveal so many Oregon Trail stories: where the emigrants came from, how they lived, and died, as they headed for Oregon and the awaited promises.

The last hurdle for emigrants on the Oregon Trail was the Cascade Range. Early pioneers either had to barge down the treacherous Columbia River, make their home in The Dalles, or travel the Barlow Road through the Cascades along the south side of Mt Hood.  Lodging option on Mt Hood: Old Parkdale Inn Bed and Breakfast 

The Columbia Gorge Discovery Center and Museum reveals the cataclysmic floods that helped shape the Columbia River Gorge. Here also you’ll experience interactive exhibits of the Lewis and Clark expedition, The Oregon Trail and 10,000 years of Native American life in the Gorge.  Lodging: Hood River Bed and Breakfasts

At the End of the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center and Historic Site in Oregon City, visitors can learn about the journey, discover what it was like to be a pioneer and what life was like for those who reached Oregon Territory.  Lodging options: Willamette Valley Bed and Breakfasts

“On such a journey as this, there is much to interest and amuse one who is fond of picturesque scenery, and of wild life.” – Randolph Marcy, 1859

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

Tundra Swans in the Columbia River Gorge

For me the return of the Tundra Swans to Mirror Lake in the Columbia River Gorge, marks the beginning of Winter.

Mirror Lake is at the foot of Crown Point, visible from Interstate 84 just west of the Rooster Rock exit. The Lake can host upwards of 100 Tundra swans, although as of yesterday only a few had arrived from their Arctic tundra nesting grounds.  The Scenic Colombia River Gorge is just one of Oregon’s 7 Wonders and Oregon B&Bs in the Region welcome you.

Tundra Swans dine on plant material, slugs, snails, insects and crayfish, and typically weigh from 10 to 18 pounds, averaging about 53 inches in length.  They mate for life and travel in family groups in roundtrip migrations of up to 3,725 miles.

Tundra Swans winter here and share space with Hooded Merganser, Mallards, Green-winged Teal, Northern Pintail, Bufflehead, Song Sparrow, Ruby-crowned Kinglet, Steller’s Jay, Black-capped Chickadee.

Look closely at the photo for Mallards, a Great Blue Heron and a Hooded Merganser.

Oregon is a bird watchers paradise and many of our Member Inns recognize and are located near land ideal for birding.  Some, like the Old Parkdale Inn Bed and Breakfast, have Backyard Wildlife Habitats recognized by the National Wildlife Federations.  There are extensive reserves across the state.  These habitats serve as excellent nesting and brood rearing areas for waterfowl and colonial nesting birds including American white pelican and several heron species.  Bald eagle and osprey nest in many parts of the state and can sometimes be seen dining on the local wild life.

The innkeepers of the Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild are ready to share Oregon, its environment, culture, and heritage with you.  Get to know our State like a local. Whether you’re looking for a quiet escape, a world class city experience, or a new spin on business travel,  you can be assured of combining gracious hospitality with ambiance when staying at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

Oregon Mural Trail

The videos of Travel Oregon’s Oregon, Only Slightly Exaggerated reveal whimsical scenes of enchanting forests, vineyards, rivers, mountains and more, and share with you that magical feeling of being in Oregon.

Now the captivating artwork is coming to the real world, proudly hand-painted on walls in Oregon where the illustrations represent the destinations.   Let the Oregon Mural Trail inspire you to get outside and experience the wonders of each community.  Take photos of the murals and use the hashtag #OregonIsMagic in social posts to share the love.  And while you’re there, visit the landmarks and businesses that make these towns just so magical.

The featured mural was dedicated yesterday in The Dalles,Oregon. A historic city on the sunny eastern end of the Columbia River Gorge, The Dalles is fortunate to have easy access to rivers, hiking trails and scenic drives.

Lodging options in the Columbia River Gorge, the inns of the Mt Hood and The Gorge region

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

Summer Adventures Oregon Ski Areas

Fall has arrived in the Hood River Valley.  The kids have gone back to school.  The crowds are lessening, especially during the week.  We invite you to experience the cool crisp nights, warm days and these 10 things to do before the snow falls

  1. Visit a Winery on the Hood River County Fruit Loop
  2. Your Breweries of the Gorge passport will guide you through the fabulous breweries in the Columbia River Gorge
  3. Explore a variety of Ciders
  4. Discover a new Apple
  5. Grab some higher elevation Geocaches
  6. Take a hike that may or may not include a Waterfall or two
  7. Mountain Bike
  8. Golf
  9. Cycle the fruit loop
  10. White Water Raft 

There are 8 Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member inns in this spectacular region.  For the perfect stay in the Columbia River Gorge visit the Hood River Lodging page of the Guild website.

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

National Pancake Day

National Pancake Day

Pancakes are good any day of the year as is proven by the innkeepers of the Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild. 

Today let’s honor the pancake.  Does the mere mention of pancakes send your senses reeling?  A plate of steamy hot pancakes can instantly lift your spirits and certainly can make your tummy happy.

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild Innkeepers sure know how create pancakes that are tender, light and oh so tasty. Fresh local ingredients like crispy Hood River County Apples or sweet Willamette Valley Berries or fresh peaches picked up at a weekly farmers market make these unique ‘cakes’

Apple Pancakes with warm Apple Cider Syrup have become a guest favorite at the Old Parkdale Inn Bed and Breakfast and thanks to Ryan’s Hood River Juice Company for the Apple Cider Syrup recipe. In the Hood River Valley, known for its abundant apples and pears, this innkeeper’s been using a wonderful sourdough starter for the pancakes and mixing in one teaspoon cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg and 1/2 cup grated fresh apple.

At the Carlton Inn Bed and Breakfast their farm fresh eggs will make their way into gourmet breakfasts at the inn like their Lemon Ricotta Pancakes

The Old Parkdale Inn B&B also serves hot-off-the-griddle Sourdough Blueberry Pancakes often throughout the year, made with fresh and frozen berries of the Hood River Valley.

And then there’s the Blueberry Pancake.  And Dutch Baby Pancakes.  Reserve your room today and ask the innkeeper what their signature pancake recipe is and maybe, just maybe, if the fruit they use is in season you’ll be treated to awesome pancake goodness.

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.