In Portland itself and in the greater Portland area, there are many wonderful activities to do. On Wednesday, David and I visited part of the Columbia River gorge. It was a beautiful drive along the broad Columbia River.
In the Columbia River gorge, there are a number of waterfalls. One of the most visited falls in Oregon is Multnomah Falls. It is the tallest waterfall in Oregon. Multnomah Falls is a two-tiered 620 foot waterfall. The upper falls cascade down some 542 feet to a ledge where it continues to the lower falls and drops another 69 feet. We walked up to an observation bridge above the lower falls where we were able to get a better view of the upper falls. There are also many trails around the falls. There were many people there enjoying the view of the waterfalls. In fact, it is so popular that there is actually an exit and parking area in the middle of the interstate to accommodate the number of visitors.
Near Multnomah Falls is another beautiful waterfall called Horsetail Falls. This waterfall is my favorite since you can see all of the waterfall at once. While it is only 176 feet tall, it is well worth the short drive to see it.
As mentioned in an earlier post, there are many parks in Portland. The smallest park in Portland is called Mill Ends Park and it is only 2.5 feet in diameter, making it the tiniest park in the entire world. There was originally supposed to be a light pole in the place of Mill Ends Park, but they never got around to putting it up. One of the largest parks in the area is Washington Park. It is an enormous park that is more than 410 acres and hosts a zoo, a Japanese garden, an arboretum, several museums and the International Rose Test Garden. You could spend days exploring Washington Park.
David and I went to the International Rose Test Garden on a beautiful sunny morning. This garden is the oldest continuously operated public test garden in the United States. It was established during World War I, just in case bombs destroyed all of Europe’s rosebushes. Today, the International Rose Garden has more than 7,000 rose plants and 550 varieties of roses. The garden is divided into several sections. In some sections there are established award-winning rose plants and in others there are new varieties of rose plants that are being tested for color, fragrance, disease resistance, etc. before they are marketed.
This year the International Rose Test Garden is celebrating its centennial year of operation. We had a great time exploring the garden and seeing all the beautiful colors and varieties of rose plants. The roses are truly exceptional and the experience of being in the garden was well worth the trip.