So I did get out of town one other week this summer. At the end of July I jetted back out west to Portland, for a 5 day romp in which included a scenic hike, a workout with some high school wrestlers, the Portland Micro Brewfest, whitewater rafting, and a few nights on the town with my best friends. It made for an interesting weekend indeed.
The weather was perfect, again, just as it had been out on the east coast in late June. Upon my arrival I trucked it all the way from Portland international out to Beaverton via public transportation. Lucky for me, my run in with the rail system in NYC prepared me for the ride. (That last sentence was soaked in sarcasm) The train in Portland was clean, uncrowded, relaxing, and fast; all of which were not included four hours eastward.
The first day, I conquered this hike overlooking the Columbia River Valley, or "The Gorge" as it is referred to out there. It was exactly the experience I was looking for. Moderately difficult with a spectacular view at the end.
Conquering our hike
Day two, I worked out with my buddy's high school wrestling team, well I hit the weightroom next door, I didn't want to get pinned by a high schooler. I'm not exactly a natural born grappler.
Day three, I trucked it back down to Portland to spend the weekend with my college roommates. Instantly the slang shtick, name calling, and putdowns began as if we had never spent any time apart. It was comforting being with all of them again, even being by far the easiest target for badgering. We spent the night whistling and cat calling any women that walked by and catching up on our hectic lives over several pints of our favorite beverages.
The Portland Brewfest
Day four, Brewfest came to town. After spending the morning recovering with a game of pickup basketball and a walk along the river. The grounds were packed full of beer connoisseurs, scandalously clad women, and lots of bearded drunk dudes. We all took a good taste of the many fine brews offered, before sauntering off to dinner.
Leaving your drunk friends phone number for the waitress :)
On Saturday, we piled into the car for a whitewater rafting trip. Although hung over we were all looking forward to an exciting adventure. The White Salmon River is home to the largest waterfall that can be rafted commercially. The water temp was also running at a brisk 42 degrees, but with the wet suits and the air temp in the upper 80's it was a nice change to plunge under with each rapid.
Gettin' after it
After rafting, I spent the night camping with friends in a national forest at the base of Mount Adams. There were some good glimpses of the great mountain on the drive, however once down inside the trees there wasn't much to look at. One neat thing did happen after dark; deer kept walking all around our camp site and we'd hear them and shine our flashlights; only to be met by curiously starring eyes glowing green against the brightness.
Camping at the base of Mt. Adams
The grill master