There are very few people who always make me happy. Rick Steves is absolutely one of them. He’s also something a guru to me.
There’s just something impossibly endearing about a guy who is an absolute goofball and makes no attempt to either hide it or change. “In my early days of touring,” he has said, “I used to worry about being a cultural bumpkin — but now I embrace it. After all, I travel to learn.”
Continue reading “I Love Rick Steves”
When I think back on my travel writer days, my breakfast in Baker, California always rises to the top.
It was just one of those pieces I felt good about at the time, like I had really gotten the essence of the experience and the place. And it was, for all its goofiness, a pleasant memory, road-tripping around the desert with my first serious girlfriend.
Continue reading “Travel Story: Breakfast in Baker”
If you’re looking for hikes in the Columbia River Gorge that are packed with scenery but without the crowds, check out Mitchell Point. This is especially true if you want a view like Angels Rest — maybe better — but can’t even find parking there.
Continue reading “Portland Hikes: Mitchell Point is a Less-Crowded Alternative to Angels Rest”
On February 2, 1998, I rode a bus into New York City, then left on a train. I was 31, rambling around the east coast visiting friends, spending money I had made the previous summer working in Alaska.
And I was writing.
Continue reading “Travel Story: Two Hours in the City”
Today I flipped the calendar to May – quite literally a normal event, except that for me, May 2021 will be the last month I live in Portland, Oregon.
It will also be the last month I technically live anywhere. The last month, at least for a year, that I will spend in my home, surrounded by my stuff, hanging out with my friends, going to see my team play, hiking trails that I know, and basically knowing what each day is going to bring.
30 days. Then I’m gone.
Continue reading “Leaving Portland: Am I Excited?”
For years, people hiking the Oregon Coast Trail between Manzanita and Arch Cape via Neahkahnie Mountain and Oswald West State Park had to walk a couple miles on the shoulder of US Highway 101. No more, thanks to local nonprofit, citizen, government and volunteer efforts.
Continue reading “New Section of the Oregon Coast Trail: Manzanita to Neahkahnie Mountain”
You can’t do any real hiking without a car, right? Wrong. There are literally days worth of hikes a person without a car can do in the Columbia River Gorge. Here are a few I have come up with on the Oregon side.
Hiking in the Gorge without a car means simply being patient, flexible on timing, and getting to know the schedules and logistics of public bus systems — specifically the Columbia Gorge Express on the Oregon side.
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The question of how to get out and enjoy nature without a car can be a tough one. But hiking without a car in and around Portland is not as hard, or limited, as you might think.
As a perfect example, check out Oaks Bottom, a hike that’s in Portland and yet is suprisingly peaceful and natural. It’s also super easy to hike it without a car using public transportation.
Continue reading “Hike Without a Car in Portland: Oaks Bottom Wildlife Refuge”
How can you go hiking in and around Portland without a car? This is the question I have sought out to answer, here and in the new upcoming (2022) edition of my hiking guide, 60 Hikes Within 60 Miles of Portland.
Continue reading “Hiking in and Around Portland Without a Car”