Posts Tagged ‘outdoor’

Got Birds? Plenty here at the Backyard Feeders of the Old Parkdale Inn Bed and Breakfast

March 25th, 2013 by Gorge Lodging

American Goldfinch

American Goldfinch

We sure do!  Our gardens are a flurry of avian activity!  Sparrows, finches, blackbirds, chickadees…the list goes on.  Our most colorful visitors so far this spring have been the Evening Grosbeaks.  They are a beautiful bird, don’t you think?  And we have had at least 50 feeding regularly at our many feeding stations.

The gardens of the Old Parkdale Inn Bed and Breakfast have been recognized as a Backyard Wildlife Habitat by the National Wildlife Foundation.  That is we provide feed, water, shelter and nesting provisions for the many species of birds that visit our gardens.  One day last spring in just about a half hours time I identified 21 species of birds!  I invite you to come sit in a secluded nook of our garden and watch the activities!

100+ Activities and Adventures Await

February 1st, 2013 by Gorge Lodging

Miles and miles of XC ski and snow shoe trails in the National Forests surrounding the Columbia River Gorge.

Miles and miles of XC ski and snow shoe trails in the National Forests surrounding the Columbia River Gorge.

I had a phone inquiry the other day: “We’re thinking about coming and visiting the Columbia River Gorge but was wondering, is there anything to do in the area?”

Really?  Well, let me tell you, one experience at a time.

For us there is nothing better than a hike in our adjacent National Forests, fresh snow, no wind, fresh tracks.  If it’s snowing, it’s even better.  The forests surrounding Mt Adams, in Washington, and Mt Hood, in Oregon, have miles and miles of trails to explore.

The innkeepers of the Columbia River Gorge Bed and Breakfast Association will send you off in the right directions

Don’t Pass Snowplows on the Right! DUH!

November 30th, 2012 by Gorge Lodging

DO NOT PASS SNOWPLOWS ON THE RIGHT
DUH!

A couple years back someone tacked this added message below the warning sign that really states the obvious.  Be prepared when exploring Oregon during the winter months.  And don’t always rely on that GPS.  Many forest roads, while beautiful alternatives from the main highways and freeways during the snow free months, are not maintained during the winter.

Travelers should be aware that even a few inches of snow can obscure icy roads and soft shoulders where vehicles can become stuck.  Winter storms can trigger unexpected rock slides, and falling limbs and trees; they can quickly change driving conditions on forest roads from passable to impassable in a matter of minutes.

Keys to safe winter driving: Plan for the unexpected.  Keep in mind that cell phones may not work in remote areas.  Check the latest road and weather conditions at TripCheck.com or dial 511 before heading out.  Always tell someone where you’re going and stick to that plan.   Carry an emergency kit in your vehicle.  Travelers should be prepared to spend long periods of time in the car.  Blankets or sleeping bags, warm clothes, a snow shovel, water, food and other necessities are recommended as part of a complete vehicle emergency kit.  Always fuel up at the beginning of the trip.

Weather can change quickly, particularly in higher elevations. Good snow tires, a 4-wheel drive vehicle, and chains are advised or often required, when driving in winter conditions.  As a general rule, always adjust your speed to current conditions and drive at speeds that allow you to stop in half of the visible road distance ahead of you.

Helpful information about planning a trip to a national forest during the winter months can be found on the Know Before You Go webpage at go.usa.gov/Cmq.

ODOT and the County Maintenance Crews do an amazing job keeping our Highways and Interstates passable.  They plow, they de-ice and sand but it is our job to use a little common sense, stay on roads maintained during the winter months, and drive cautiously to make sure we reach our destination safely.

Geocaching the Columbia River Gorge and Surrounding National Forests

May 10th, 2012 by Gorge Lodging

‘Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online. Geocaching is enjoyed by people, from all age groups, with a strong sense of community and support for the environment.  Geocaching.com is the headquarters for the activity”

Did you know that Geocaching started in Oregon?  A little history lesson, the full version can be read on the Geocaching.com history page from where I’ve gotten this information.

“Geocaching is a high-tech treasure hunting game played throughout the world by adventure seekers equipped with GPS devices. The basic idea is to locate hidden containers, called geocaches, outdoors and then share your experiences online. Geocaching is enjoyed by people from all age groups, with a strong sense of community and support for the environment.  Geocaching.com is the headquarters for the activity”  On this site you can read the history of Geocaching.

* On May 2, 2000, at approximately midnight, eastern savings time, the great blue switch* controlling selective availability was pressed. Twenty-four satellites around the globe processed their new orders, and instantly the accuracy of GPS technology improved tenfold. Tens of thousands of GPS receivers around the world had an instant upgrade. Now, anyone could “precisely pinpoint their location or the location of items (such as game) left behind for later recovery.” How right they were.

* On May 3 a GPS enthusiast, Dave Ulmer, computer consultant, wanted to test the accuracy by hiding a navigational target in the woods. He called the idea the “Great American GPS Stash Hunt” and posted it in an internet GPS users’ group. The idea was simple: Hide a container out in the woods and note the coordinates with a GPS unit.  On May 3rd he placed his own container, a black bucket, in the woods near Beavercreek, Oregon, near Portland.

* Within three days, two different readers read about his stash on the Internet, used their own GPS receivers to find the container, and shared their experiences online.  Like many new and innovative ideas on the Internet, the concept spread quickly – but this one required leaving your computer to participate.

* Within the first month, Mike Teague, the first person to find Ulmer’s stash, began gathering the online posts of coordinates around the world and documenting them on his personal home page. The “GPS Stash Hunt” mailing list was created to discuss the emerging activity.

* Geocaching.com was released to the stash-hunting community on September 2, 2000. At the time the site was launched there were 75 known caches in the world.  There are now over 1.5 million caches around the world, in only 12 years.’

This is certainly the condensed version.  Visit Geocaching.com history for the full story.  I checked to see if the Original Cache was still available, but alas, it has been archived and the Un-Original Stash placed in it’s honor.  The links will take you to their listing on Geocaching.com but if you are not logged in I’m not sure if you will be able to view.

Geocaching is Eco Friendly Travel at it’s best.  Choose a member inn of the Columbia River Gorge Bed and Breakfast Association for your home base when Caching the Gorge

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