Category: Pacific Northwest

“Yeah, but once you leave Portland, the people get weird.” I’ve heard that so many times (oddly enough, considering the “Keep Portland Weird” mantra), and I’ve found it to be almost entirely untrue. Except for that one town I drove through on a roundabout way home from the coast this summer (Brickerville? Rainrock? Deadwood? I don’t remember. But that place really was weird.)

This is downtown Mitchell (pictured) in Eastern Oregon. It’s the closest place to get a hotel room if you’re visiting the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument (which, thanks to its rock formations and all the three-toed horse and short-faced dog fossils is weird.) Mitchell itself, however, is just like any other small American town, except, I guess, for the boarded up old cafes, the caged 800-pound bear at the town’s only gas station (”pump stop” would be a better description) and the fact that most of the people left in the area are unemployed, which, come to think of it, is probably not that weird at all these days. Other than these minor details, Mitchell is a normal everyday little town. Continue reading »

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Travelers in the Pacific Northwest have many options for superb outdoors experiences, but an unusual one that seems to be catching on is positively, uh, radiant. Hugo Martin in the Los Angeles Times reports on the growing numbers of kayakers and jet-boat tourists cruising the Columbia River past the Hanford Reach in Hanford, Washington, America’s most contaminated nuclear site. Soon the reactor that produced the plutonium for the bomb dropped on Nagasaki, Japan in World War II may be designated a historic landmark and open for tours. I wonder if you’ll need to wear a lead suit?

(Via LA Times’s Daily Travel & Deal Blog)

Leave a Comment | Filed Under Canoe/Kayak, Pacific Northwest, United States