hiking in The Gorge

Weldon Wagon Trail Hike

Sunday morning Logan got us up bright and early (yay vacation! haha) and we had breakfast on the deck and then packed up for a hike. First stop was to White Salmon at the adorable North Shore Cafe for coffee!

We decided to do the Weldon Wagon Trail hike because it was really close to where we were staying–and it was right by the BBQ place we went to! (We loved the food so much we considered stopping for lunch there on our way back but the timing wasn’t right and they were still closed.)

The hike was really cool! We started on an old logging road and then found the trailhead and it went through the forest for a bit before it opened up and you could see everywhere in the valley.

If you look carefully in the photo above, you can see the trail.

The trail was quiet and remote but clearly well maintained. We met a few other hikers on the trail but not many. It was a hard trail, too. Not difficult but the climb was constant and it never leveled off to give you a break.

We stopped a few times for water and the catch our breathe. Not only was it pretty steep it was hot out–even for 10am!

We both really liked the hike….until I didn’t like it anymore. 🙂

It opened up and it was pretty high up in elevation and my fear of heights started to kick in. I was feeling a bit light headed and decided it was time to turn around! It was just really narrow and freaked me out!

I mean, the views were gorgeous! But…scary.

We headed back down the trail and it turned out to be a good little hike and the perfect time to head back to the house to clean up, feed Logan and get ready to head out for the day.

We left Bella at the house this time. We planned on going to lunch and then doing the Fruit Loop in Hood River and you can’t bring dogs and it was too hot to leave her in the car. Kind of a bummer but the safest bet.

We had lunch in Hood River at a Taqueria. They had a really nice outdoor patio! I got the lunch tamale and shared it with Logan. He loved it!

After lunch we drove out to the Fruit Loop.

The first stop was the Draper Girls Farms.  Logan got to see goats for the first time 🙂 and we bought some of their homemade jalapeno feta cheese and some fancy mustard. Next stop: Wy’East Wineries.

I like Wy’East a lot. Logan was asleep though so Michael stayed in the air-conditioned car with him. It just wasn’t the same to go by myself. I did a quick tasting and bought Michael a bottle of their Red Blend.

Next stop: Packard Bakery and Farms. We stopped there last October for their pumpkin patch activities. It was definitely better in the fall! There wasn’t much going on so I just bought a jar of pickled garlic and cowboy candy jalapenos. 😀

After that we checked out the Children’s Park for awhile in downtown Hood River. Then we were home to relax on the deck with Logan and Bella. We drove up to the house and saw a deer right in the front yard and it wasn’t scared off by us! Check out my video on instagram. Then again when I was laying on the hammock it came right through the yard by me!

Dinner was grilled hot dogs! And then early to bed for all of us.

Tanner Butte Hike

On Saturday we drove out to the Gorge to go for a family hike. We intended to do Dublin Lake Hike but I think we ended up doing Tanner Butte, or part of it anyways. The trailhead was Tooth Rock, right of I-84 at the Bonneville Dam, and it was a huge parking lot and apparently there were several hikes that started at that trailhead. You can read about it here.

We left the parking lot and walked about 1/4 of a mile on the Gorge bike trail (paved) and then there was a side trail (that we almost missed!!) for Tanner Butte. It was pretty overgrown at the beginning.

It started out as a pretty strenuous climb right away.

About 1/4 mile up the trail we came to several downed trees (why do we keep going on hikes that have fallen trees blocking the trail?!?). The first one was the only difficult one to get around. I crawled underneath it and then took Logan in the back pack while Michael crawled under. The other fallen trees (like the one above) were easy to get around.

It was a really great hike! It was quiet and peaceful and really pretty. Once we got away from the highway you couldn’t hear the cars at all and we only saw two other hikers on the trail.

The trail kept climbing up. We got to a clearing that had a view.

Then we got to another fork in the trail. It was kind of a maze of different forks. I tried to follow the instructions for the hike we wanted to do but I am still not sure if I did it right! We went up on this fork:

Bella having a blast:

We got to some switchbacks and then we got to the end of the hike–landslide! The trail was gone. So we had to turn around and go back down. It was too dangerous with the dog and baby to try and traverse the landslide, washed out part of the trail.

The climb back down was pretty easy.

We didn’t see anyone else on the trail. I’m surprised because it was such a nice, quiet hike.

Back down to the fallen trees:

And then we were back to the paved path. I saw this cool little plaque:

And there were lots of wildflowers blooming.

Logan did great on the hike! Not fussy at all. I think our hike was a little over an hour, so it was the perfect time and distance.

We got back to the parking lot area and let Logan run around on the trail and explore a little bit.

He was loving it!

Then we sat at the picnic bench for a picnic lunch. This was really nice! It was quiet, the sun was out, we were able to just relax and eat and Logan had fun too. 🙂

Here are the stats:

We hiked about 3 miles total.

It was a great hike! It’s free, 45 minutes drive from Portland and a good workout. (FYI there is no bathroom at the trailhead.) We plan on going back again in a few weeks to check out the other fork in the path.