Columbia River Gorge East, April 2016

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Day two of the spring visit to the Gorge found us east of Hood River on the section of historic highway 30 that starts in Mosier.  It’s a great stretch of road that winds above I-84 with a slower pace and great views.

Historic Highway 30
Historic Highway 30

This end of the Gorge is dryer and therefore has less trees and more open grasslands.  During the right time of year it is filled with wildflowers.

Balsam
Balsamroot

Our first main stop of the day was Tom McCall Point.  This is a preserve owned by The Nature Conservancy and it offered stellar views of both Mt. Adams and Mt. Hood as well as a wide variety of wildflowers.  There were so many stunning wildflowers in various stages of blooming it was impossible to capture them all.

 

Tom McCall Point Trail

 

Checker Lilly
Checker Lilly

Reaching the point you are treated to quite an expansive view and all the hills were various shades of yellow and green being dominated by the balsamroot.

Mt. Hood from Tom McCall Point
Mt. Hood from Tom McCall Point

Back down the trail it was, and on to the Washington side for the afternoon.  On the way to the next hike we had to take a quick detour to stonehenge.

Stonehenge Memorial
Stonehenge Memorial

 

Stonehenge Memorial
Stonehenge Memorial

At least something good can come of all the wind!

Windmills
Windmills

Then it was on to Catherine Creek for the afternoon hike.  Catherine Creek had been on my list for a while and I finally made it.  It was another wildflower wonderland.

 

Camas
Camas

There was also a view or two.

 

Mt. Hood from Catherine Creek trail
Mt. Hood from Catherine Creek trail

 

Catherine Creek scene
Catherine Creek scene

Our time had run out on our tour of the Gorge, it was time well spent.

 

Balsamroot
Balsamroot

 

Shooting Star
Shooting Star

 

Fairyslipper, perhaps the favorite of the trip...
Fairyslipper, perhaps the favorite of the trip…

 

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