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LATINOS MAKING A MARK The Invisible 30 Percent

SAVING TILLY JANE Restoring a Beloved Cabin


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Visit Historic Downtown

TROUTDALE the gateway to the gorge Take Exit 17 off I-84

Visit our many Specialty Shops, Art Galleries, Antique Shops, Fine Restaurants, and more!

Taste of Village Chinese RestauRant & Lounge { Cantonese and Mandarin Cuisine }

Troutdale Vision Clinic 277 East Columbia River Hwy Appointments (503)-328-8455

Eye exams, diagnosis and treatment Eyewear styling to fit your lifestyle Most insurance accepted

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oRDeRs to go: (503) 666-7768 302 e. historic Columbia River hwy sun-thur, 11-10pm • Fri & sat, 11-10:30pm

gifts HomE dECoR EspREsso

We Buy & Sell AntiqueS

(503) 618-9394 319 E. Historic Columbia River Hwy

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373 East Historic Columbia River Highway


café • gifts • candy • souvenirs espresso • ice cream parlour

(503) 492-7912


2/22/17 1:45 PM



THE LONG RIDE Three Gorge residents find solace—and a lot of other things—in long-distance bicycle touring By Cate Hotchkiss


THE INVISIBLE 30 PERCENT Latinos make up nearly a third of the population in Hood River County. Their lives and culture remain largely unknown to their neighbors, but many are seeking to find their place in the community. By Kathy Watson

The Invisible 30 Percent 4

David Hanson



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Discover your adventure…experience ours! MARYHILL WINERY Wine Press Northwest’s “2015 Pacific Northwest Winery of the Year”, 50+ award-winning wines, Tuscan-style terrace with views of Mt. Hood, Bocce, picnicking, live music every summer weekend from 1pm-5pm, tasting room, gift shop.

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The perfect base for Gorge adventures. Free wine tasting passes, spring blossoms on the Fruit Loop. River view guest rooms, dining at Riverside, Cebu Lounge, heated outdoor pool, spas, and sauna.

Find specialty groceries and meat, local produce, gifts and cards, local arts and crafts, local wine selection, hard ice cream. We are also a garden center and feed, grain, pet supply store. Visit Angel’s Bakery inside for fresh pastries, pies, breads, cake.

800-828-7873 • 1108 E. Marina Way • Hood River

509-493-2636 • Find us on Facebook 806 West Steuben St • Bingen



Delicious, locally roasted, fair trade, organic coffee, and fresh pastries. For lunch try a savory panini or wrap with a fresh organic green salad. We also serve local wine and NW beer. Dine inside or on our private patio. Ask about our catering services.

Perfect for families, groups, and friends with trips for all ages and abilities. Guided rafting on the White Salmon, Deschutes, Clackamas Rivers, and more! Last minute reservations okay. For updates and specials follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

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800-972-0430 •



Experience our fine wines from small lot production and winemakers regularly pouring at the tasting room. Stop by and see what Tetrahedron has to offer! 509-774-8323 • 421 State Street (Hwy 14) • Lyle

Family run B&B along the banks of the wild White Salmon River. Five European-inspired rooms with plush queen beds, and private baths. Homemade 5-star breakfast buffet included. 509-281-1181 • 866 Hwy 141 • Husum

VISITOR INFORMATION CENTER: 1 Heritage Plaza, White Salmon, WA 98672 • (509) 493-3630 •

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18 24























Michael Peterson

our gorge


Laurie Black


Michael Peterson


SAVING TILLY JANE Inside a grassroots effort to restore a treasure of the Mount Hood backcountry By DaViD Hanson

arts + culture



BEHIND THE SCENES Gorge artists welcome visitors in annual Open Studio Tour By Janet Cook

wellness Artwork by and photo courtesy of Christine Knowles



GET WELL HERE Treating patients and athletes holistically at Columbia Gorge Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine By Janet Cook


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SINCE 1994




305 OAK STREET • HOOD RIVER 541-386-6188

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any years ago, when I was working as a feature writer for the local newspaper, I had an opportunity to do an in-depth story about a Hood River girl’s Quinceañera, the traditional coming-of-age celebration for Latino girls when they turn 15. Along with our staff photographer, I spent the entire day of the event with my story’s subject, Brenda, from soon after she was awoken at dawn by a Mariachi band serenading her from the orchard outside her family’s house until after 10 p.m., when the dancing at the Expo Center was still going strong. In between were hours of preparation, more hours at a traditional ceremony at St. Mary’s Catholic Church, and then the party—attended by hundreds of people—that started in late afternoon and went on joyfully into the night. Through it all, Brenda and her family welcomed us into their fold with open arms. That day left an indelible impression on me, for the sheer force of love and merriment all around, and for the incredible effort by so many that went into this beloved tradition of celebrating a girl’s transition to womanhood. Perhaps most striking of all, it offered me a glimpse into a completely different culture and community from the one I lived in—albeit in the very same town.

April 15-16

It’s been more than 15 years since Brenda’s Quinceañera, but the same disconnect still exists in our community. Writer Kathy Watson explores this issue in her story, “The Invisible 30 Percent,” beginning on page 50. Latinos make up nearly one-third of the population of Hood River County, but as Watson aptly points out, most of us have little interaction with them. “We don’t know how they live their lives or even how we might get to know them better,” she writes. Watson introduces us to some Latino community leaders, who share their stories, aspirations and fears—and the challenge of honoring their heritage while also finding a place for themselves in the social fabric of Hood River. Cate Hotchkiss writes of a different kind of disconnect in her story about three Gorge residents who pursue long-distance bike touring (page 42). They disengage from their day-to-day lives for weeks on the road (or trail), but they find a profound connection with other cyclists and the world at large on their inspiring adventures. Other stories in this issue include a piece on a grassroots effort to restore the beloved Tilly Jane hut on Mount Hood (page 56); a story about longtime landscape designer Marion McNew (page 20); and a preview of the annual Gorge Artists Open Studio Tour (page 60). There’s a lot more in these pages, too. Welcome to springtime in the Gorge!


—Janet Cook, Editor

LATINOS MAKING A MARK The Invisible 30 Percent

RESTORING TILLY JANE Grassroots Help for Beloved Hut

BICYCLE TOURING In It For the Long Ride

ABOUT THE COVER David Hanson photographed Umberto Calderon inside his Hood River store, Novedades el Potrillo, as part of our feature story on Latinos in Hood River County. Calderon has owned his clothing and accessories store for 10 years, and for a decade before that he sold similar goods from his van in the orchards.

When you have read this issue please pass it on to a friend or recycle it. Together we can make a difference in preserving and conserving our resources. 8


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e Go h t e r e h w

rge gets engaged


RENATA KOSINA Creative Director/Graphic Designer

MICKI CHAPMAN Advertising Director

JENNA HALLETT Account Executive

CONTRIBUTING WRITERS Viki Eierdam, David Hanson, Cate Hotchkiss, Peggy Dills Kelter, Kacie McMackin, Kathy Watson


CONTRIBUTING PHOTOGRAPHERS Paloma Ayala, Laurie Black, Chris Emerick, Silvia Flores, David Hanson, Adam Lapierre, Kacie McMackin, Ben Mitchell, Michael Peterson


Rentals, Real Estate & Lodging


SOCIAL MEDIA instagram/thegorgemagazine pinterest/thegorgemagazine

Serving the Gorge Since 2001



BOUTIQUE HOTEL PO Box 390 • 419 State Street Hood River, Oregon 97031

We appreciate your feedback. Please email comments to:

The Gorge Magazine is published by Eagle Magazines, Inc., an affiliate of Eagle Newspapers, Inc. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronically or mechanically, including photocopy, recording or any information storage and retrieval system, without the express written permission of Eagle Magazines, Inc. Articles and photographs appearing in The Gorge Magazine may not be reproduced in whole or in part without the express written consent of the publisher. The views and opinions expressed in these articles are not necessarily those of The Gorge Magazine, Eagle Magazines, Inc., Eagle Newspapers, Inc., or its employees, staff or management. All RIGHTS RESERVED. PRINTED IN THE U.S.A.

Farm Fresh Breakfast Private Baths 541-387-6700 Denise McCravey Broker/Owner OR & WA

VACATION HOMES Stay, Shop & Play 541-386-4845

In the Oak •Street Hotel building • 610 Oak Street Downtown Hood River Serving the Gorge THE GORGE MAGAZINE : SPRING 2017 9

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OUR GORGE person of interest p. 12 ventures p. 14

best of the gorge p. 16 home + garden p. 20 locavore p. 24 style + design p. 28 explore p. 30 wine spotlight p. 34

Hood River’s Stratton Gardens is one of many public spaces in the Gorge created by landscape designer Marion McNew of Mt. Hood Gardens. p. 20 Photo courtesy of Marion McNew


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Turning the Flywheel

Mark Thomas coaxes the “health” into “health care” at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital STORY BY KATHY WATSON • PHOTOS BY MICHAEL PETERSON


o understand Mark Thomas’ job as Director of Mission Integration, Ethics and Spiritual Care for Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital, imagine Thomas standing with his finger holding back a crumbling dike. On one side is the $3.24 trillion U.S. health care industrial complex. On the other side is Thomas, whose only weapon is a mission statement: “As people of Providence, we reveal God’s love for all, especially the poor and vulnerable, through our compassionate service.”

“It causes a healthy amount of moral distress for me to be in health care,” Thomas admits. But he has a fallback: “Our mission doesn’t say health care.” And yet, Thomas’ paycheck each month comes from a multi-billion dollar corporation with 50 hospitals in seven western states. This is a game of semantics, you might say. Surely this is health care, isn’t it? “We have to remind ourselves why we’re here,” Thomas says. “We’re called to be a transformative force. Health care is just how we keep the doors open.” The culture inside Providence, shaped over 160 years by the holistic Catholic charity of the Sisters of Providence, is really about making people healthier. That includes health care, yes, but also affordable housing, nutrition, transportation and education. “We have lots of opportunities to imagine it differently,” he says. “People are so much more than their diagnoses.” Thomas imagines a future for Providence, and America, in which less money is spent on health care, and yet people are healthier. “We’re buying the wrong stuff,” he says of America’s spending on health care. “You don’t have a headache for want of an aspirin. There’s the cause beneath the cause.” Inside Providence, he leads two chaplains in providing spiritual care. As for “mission integration,” he’s a check and balance, making sure the mission and values are part of all they do. Outside Providence, he is a critical thread in the social services fabric. He serves on the boards of The Next Door, One Community Health, Gorge Ecumenical Ministries, and the Central Oregon Leadership Council of the Oregon Community Foundation, and was the co-convener of the Food Security Coalition, a Governor’s Oregon Solutions project. Thomas says he is humbled by the many people and organizations in the Gorge that share in 12

the work of making a diverse population healthier. While Providence helped fund a community needs assessment that identified roadblocks to health, for example, he names many partners: Columbia Gorge Health Council, The Next Door, One Community Health, Gorge Grown Food Network. In other words, Thomas isn’t pushing back on the dike alone. Together, that collaboration earned the $25,000 Culture of Health Prize from the Robert Word Johnson Foundation last year. It’s collaboration that gives Thomas the best day at the office. “I’ve come to realize collaboration has its own rewards, when we envision what we can do together. I’m a connector, that’s what I love doing.” By “turning the flywheel” as he calls it, Thomas has brought Providence to the table to help fund a long list of community projects, from training health workers to funding a community grant writer. Thomas, 41, was born and raised in Bend. His family wasn’t particularly religious. As a teen, he met some people he admired in Young Life, and began to think about spiritual things. He chose religious studies at Stanford, and after graduation, taught in a boarding school in Colorado. On


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Mark Thomas, who serves as Director of Mission Integration, Ethics and Spiritual Care for Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital, works both inside the hospital providing spiritual care, and out in the community helping to create collaborations that advance community health.

Tuesday nights, he’d take mountain roads to Old Snowmass and visit the Trappist Monastery for vespers. The pull of ministry tugged at him, and he applied to seminary. But there was another pull, the family’s fourth-generation car dealership in Bend. He ultimately chose seminary at the Pacific School of Religion in Berkeley. Thomas was drawn to Catholicism. “It’s really the most diverse church: here comes everybody! And for me, it has the right integration of theology and spirituality,” he says. He converted to Catholicism after he received his Masters of Divinity. He decided he wanted to work outside the church. And something his father, Bob Thomas the car dealer, said to him made him very interested in Providence. “Dad was on the foundation board at St. Charles,” says Thomas—then a Providence hospital, in Bend. “Sister Catherine had come to run the hospital in 1969. My dad had this deep, very profound admiration of her. She was gutsy, courageous. My dad is an unusual businessman. He always cared much more for developing employees as humans. He treated the car dealership as a values-based business. And he took note of Sister Catherine’s mission-driven values-based hospital. He always called it a ‘cathedral of healing.’” Just as Thomas was going off to seminary, Sister Catherine was retiring. “My Dad said to me, ‘What will they do without her, how will they stay grounded?’ That was before I knew anything about mission integration.” Nine years ago, he came to Providence in Hood River. He and his wife Gwen, a hospice social worker, have two children: Ian, 8, and Rosie, 10. Thomas walks the kids to school each morning,

loves bike racing and skiing. He didn’t go into the family business, but he says, “In a sense, I’m doing what my Dad did, continuing a kind of legacy. I’m working with our employees, helping them understand this is our ministry.” On a recent Monday morning, people hustle into the boardroom at Providence for a managers’ meeting. Thomas folds his 6-foot-5 frame into a chair near the middle of the table. He’s asked to open the meeting with a reflection. “What do you know about this word ‘mindfulness?’” he asks. People respond around the table: deliberate, focus, awareness, present. “Those are all accurate,” responds Thomas. “We have a frenetic pace here at Providence. We could benefit from more focus, more quiet attentiveness.” He tells them how he and CEO Jeanie Vieira would like to reformat the daily “safety huddle” meeting and reaches to pick up a Hoberman Sphere, a large ball that expands and contracts. He explains how the meeting will include an exercise in breathing together, as he slowly manipulates the sphere. He invites everyone to breath with him. Thomas’ voice is quiet and measured, but with a bike-racer’s intensity. You can hear, too, the patient father, the sympathetic chaplain, and the passion of a Bend nun. You can sense why 25 administrators would willingly practice breathing with him in the middle of a busy Monday. He ends the reflection with something they are all used to doing. Together, they recite the mission statement. Kathy Watson is a Hood River chef and writer and is currently working on a memoir, “No Bun for Corky: My Life as a Small Town Chef”. THE GORGE MAGAZINE : SPRING 2017 13

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In Search of a Smoother Ride Cassie Nobbs helps Gorge cyclists get the right bike fit BY CATE HOTCHKISS • PHOTOS COURTESY OF CASSIE NOBBS


hether you’re whipping up dirt or cruising around town, you should feel comfortable on your bicycle. If you don’t, there’s a good chance you have a bad bike fit.

Common symptoms of an ill-fitting bike include knee, butt, back, foot and neck pain as well as hand and saddle-area numbness, according to Cassie Nobbs, a Hood River-based physical therapist and bike-fit expert who launched Gorge Bike Fitter in 2014. “A lot of people want to ride their bikes and they like the idea of riding their bikes, but they’re uncomfortable, so it’s not really that much fun for them,” Nobbs says. “I like making it fun.” During her two-hour bike fit sessions, Nobbs helps cyclists of all ages become one with their bikes as if the bike is an extension of their body. This merging of bike and biker provides benefits beyond comfort: it enhances performance, efficiency and stability and helps to prevent overuse injuries, she says. The process involves an understanding of bike mechanics and biomechanics, or how the body is affected while the rider is pedaling, Nobbs explains, as well as keen observation skills — all of which she’s honed through practicing physical therapy and racing bikes for more than two decades. She also completed an advanced bike-fit certification program for physical therapists in 2013. Nobbs begins a fitting with what she calls a “by-the-numbers fit” during which she takes many measurements and adjusts the bike based on what the research suggests will work best. Geometry plays a key role. For instance, to help determine the correct distance between the handlebars and the rider’s hips, she uses a telescoping protractor to measure trunk and shoulder angles. With an angle finder tool, she measures the bike’s tube angles, which not only affect how the bike performs, but also how she positions the person for optimal handling of the bike. 14

From there, she makes subtle adjustments, often to the saddle, until she finds the sweet spot — that precise place where, all of a sudden, she sees the person’s body relax. “When their shoulders relax, their arms loosen, and their spine looks like it’s not tense or at the end range of motion, I know I’m getting to that point where the person is going to be happier on the bike,” she says. In early 2015, Jeff Irwin was decidedly unhappy on his bike. A longtime endurance runner and self-described IT nerd from Hood River, Irwin sought Nobbs’ expertise when, with little cycling experience, he began training for his first Ironman triathlon. “I couldn’t endure more than an hour on my bike before my knees were sore and my back was killing me,” he says. “And then I wouldn’t want to get on the thing for a couple of days. I knew I had to get some help.” A four-time Ironman finisher herself, Nobbs adjusted Irwin’s bike and gave him tips on how to


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avoid neck strain on a tri-bike. Irwin says, “You’re in this God-awful aero position where you’re hunched over like a turtle, but you still have to get your head up because you can’t just look at the front tire. Even with the most perfect fit, it’s still not a natural position. Cassie was good at letting me know that. She was really great at helping me set expectations.” He describes his Ironman experience as “phenomenal” and plans to do another this summer. SHOPPING FOR A BIKE

Nobbs not only retrofits bikes, she helps people choose new ones. With her own fleet of five bikes and a sixth on her wish list — “because you gotta have a fat bike now to ride on sand and snow,” she says — she is well acquainted with all styles of riding. “The bike industry is extremely overwhelming for a lot of people when they first start looking at bikes,” she says. She narrows their options by first helping them decide which type of bike and frame materials would best fit their cycling goals and budget. “Different materials used for bicycle fabrication all have different pros and cons. Choosing the right frame material comes down to what’s important to the client given their riding style and preferences for comfort and performance. Often the right bike is not the most expensive, high performance, or lightest bike.” Once she and the client identify suitable models, Nobbs determines the correct frame size with a

Cassie Nobbs offers bike fitting services for all categories of bikes. She does retrofitting—helping clients get a better fit on their existing bike—as well as consultation for those looking to buy a new bike.

sizer cycle, a mocked-up bike frame that allows her to simulate any upright bike the client is thinking about buying, but may not be available to test ride locally. The sizer bike saved Cathy Stever, a retired Hood River art teacher and avid cyclist, from spending thousands of dollars on a too-big bike. Last October, Stever, who is 5 feet 3 inches tall, wasn’t sure if she needed a medium- or small-sized Juliana Joplin, a high-end mountain bike she was planning to order through Hood River Bicycles. Nobbs first configured the sizer cycle to match up with the Joplin’s medium frame. “Cassie had me pedal for five minutes and right away I could tell it wasn’t going to work,” Stever says. “My back was starting to strain so she changed the sizer to the smaller frame, which worked perfectly.” Since then, Stever has rocked her Joplin on some tough Gorge trails. “I’m flowing over rubble and making corners and pitches that challenged me with my former bike,” she says. “Riding is definitely more fun and not as frustrating as in the past. It really paid off to have the bike fit.” For more information, go to

Based in Hood River, Cate Hotchkiss writes about health and wellness for national and regional magazines. She blogs at

Dry feet are happy feet finD Keen waterproof boots at footwise. available in women’s & men’s styles

Hood River • 413 Oak St 541.308.0770 Mon-Sat 10-6 & Sun 11-5 THE GORGE MAGAZINE : SPRING 2017 15

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Hood River Inn Turns 50

Maryhill Museum


The Best Western Plus Hood River Inn celebrates its 50th anniversary this year. It opened in 1967 as the Eddie Mays Inn, and became part of the Best Western network 25 years ago. The Inn has evolved over the decades, but has remained a popular hotel, restaurant and lounge. Go to the website for a calendar of planned celebration events throughout the year, including “throw-back” menu specials in the restaurant and lounge and discounted room rates. And don’t miss the 50th anniversary timeline posted near the Cebu Lounge.


The Maryhill Museum of Art opens for the season March 15 with a special exhibition featuring recent additions to the museum’s collection. Something for Everyone: New Treasures from the Permanent Collection features works added to the museum’s holdings since 2010, including Romanian folk clothing, American Indian baskets and beadwork, medieval illuminated manuscripts, art glass, and works by Northwest artists Lillian Pitt, Rick Bartow and Betty LaDuke. Other exhibits on display through November 15 include ancient Greek ceramics and a new rotation in the museum’s popular Théâtre de la Mode exhibition of post-WWII French haute couture fashions.



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Adam Lapierre

Gorge Gravel Grinder


Kick off the biking season with the Gorge Gravel Grinder on April 2. The first in the threeride Oregon Gravel Grinder series, the Gorge event offers riders three different courses to choose from—the Small Grind, at 41 miles; the Medium Grind, which is 65 miles; and the 96-mile Big Grind. All rides start and finish in The Dalles, and feature well stocked aid stations. Don’t miss the after party at Clocktower Ales.

Book Launch


Join Waucoma Bookstore and local author and farmer Andrea Bemis for the book launch party for her cookbook, Dishing up the Dirt, on March 19 from 3 to 5 p.m. at Springhouse Cellar in Hood River. Bemis, who lives with her husband on a six-acre organic farm in Parkdale, is the creator of a popular farm-to-table blog. Her cookbook builds on that success and features more than 100 inventive, seasonal recipes with a focus on whole, locally-sourced foods. The book also features beautiful photographs and short essays about life on Tumbleweed Farm. The launch party features live music and appetizers from the cookbook catered by the Fresh Start Culinary Arts program. Ben Mitchell

Spring Skiing


For those who just can’t get enough of the white stuff, Mt. Hood Meadows should feature up some excellent spring skiing after this winter’s epic snowfall. The ski resort also offers lots of fun springtime events to go with the longer days. Highlights include Spring Demo Day March 19; Spring Brew Fest on Paradise Deck on March 25; Double Mountain Mazotfest, a benefit for the Mt. Hood Meadows Avalanche Dogs, and Ski to Defeat ALS, both on April 8; and the infamous Sno-Kona Pond Skim on April 29. THE GORGE MAGAZINE : SPRING 2017 17

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Blossom Time



Hood River’s Mount N Barrel offers guided wine tasting bike tours through the Hood River Valley starting in April, with bikes and helmets provided. Options include a leisurely 7-mile ride, with stops at three wineries (Phelps Creek Vineyard, Cathedral Ridge Winery and Marchesi Vineyard) and an intermediate, 10mile ride, with visits to three wineries and a cidery ( Wy’East Vineyards, Mt. Hood Winery, The Gorge White House and a “surprise stop”). The rides include private vineyard tours, wine tasting and food pairings. Rides can be upgraded with optional add-ons, or customized.

Michael Peterson

The former Hood River Valley Blossom Fest has morphed into an entire month of events during April, now known as Blossom Time, which celebrates the beauty and agricultural heritage of the area. Many of the farms, stands and wineries on the 35-mile Hood River County Fruit Loop offer special events and activities during the month. Don’t miss the Blossom Craft Show April 15-16 at the Hood River County Fairgrounds, or the Hood River Hard-Pressed Cider Fest April 22 at 3315 Stadelman Drive in Hood River.

Wine Country Bike Tours

Your Pass Now


Paying day use recreation fees in the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area just got easier. Starting this spring, a pilot program allows users to purchase passes online using a smartphone or other digital device. Passes can be purchased onsite, with no paperwork required, thanks to digital technology that allows rangers to validate license plates online. “This makes it more convenient than ever for people to connect with their public lands with the added benefit of streamlining our administrative process,” said National Scenic Area Manager Lynn Burditt. The CRGNSA is one of only four federal recreation sites in the country to implement the program.



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Pregnant? Have a Newborn? Have you received your free Welcome Baby packet yet? Packet Includes: l  Coupons for free local services l  Story times and other events l  Free book and gift for baby l  Parenting information and much more!

Call or text for your packet today at 541-399-7177. (Oregon residents only)


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Shaping the Landscape Jennifer Alysse

Marion McNew has been bringing her creative vision to public and private places in the Gorge for nearly three decades



hen Marion McNew first came to the Gorge from her native Germany in 1982 for a two-month stay with a local orcharding family, it was supposed to be just another learning experience during her university studies in horticulture at the University of Hannover. She was here to study fruit growing. But the same thing happened to her that’s befallen many other visitors.

Susan Ballier

“I just loved it here,” she says. By the time she graduated with a master’s degree in horticulture, she’d already visited the Gorge several more times and, in 1984, McNew moved permanently to Hood River. By then she’d decided she didn’t want to become an orchardist; it was plants she loved—perennials in particular. So in 1985 she launched Mt. Hood Gardens, a perennial wholesale nursery. “Perennials were just starting to take off here,” McNew says. With her deep knowledge of perennials, McNew grew her business quickly. She had an international import license and brought plants in from abroad that she knew would grow well here. She eventually was growing 200,000 plants, which she sold to nurseries in the Portland area and shipped to seven different states.


By the late 1980s, McNew was starting to get calls for landscape design—something that was nearly nonexistent when she started her business. Her wholesale nursery was going well, and she was hesitant at first to create more work for herself. But the artistry of landscape design pulled at her—it was something she’d loved since childhood, when her father took her to gardens and parks all over Europe during their travels—so she began taking on a few clients. Some of her first projects were in The Dalles. Her reputation grew and she got busier, juggling the perennial nursery and her landscape design work. “I was working 60- to 80-hour weeks,” McNew recalls. “More and more people were moving here, and they wanted landscaped gardens.” Finally, in 1997, McNew closed the nursery side of her business to focus solely on landscape design and installation. In the 20 years since then, McNew has transformed countless public, private and commercial spaces in the Gorge. Her landscape designs and


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Spectacular views

Next to the Bridge of the Gods • Waterfall viewing, hiking, biking, sailing and more. • Indoor pool and spa

Susan Ballier

• Complimentary hot breakfast

Landscape designer Marion McNew, opposite, and her company, Mt. Hood Gardens, has created countless public and private spaces in the Gorge over the last 30 years, ranging from private patios to public parks—including Stratton Gardens, above, an award-winning downtown Hood River park. Clients can view McNew’s stock beds, below, which grow just outside her office.

installations grace downtown Hood River at Overlook Memorial Park and the adjacent Stratton Gardens; the Second Street Pocket Park; Georgiana Smith Park surrounding the Hood River County Library; and the Memory Garden at Hospice of the Gorge. Other recognizable public landscapes created by McNew include the Willow Ponds residential neighborhood and the Oak Street Hotel in Hood River, and the Creek View residential townhouse development in The Dalles. At private residences throughout the Gorge, McNew has created and implemented designs ranging from small rock gardens to acres of landscapes with multiple areas of hardscape (patios, paths and walls) combined with plantings. McNew credits the years she spent tending her perennial nursery with helping her understand what grows best in various areas of the Gorge. “We have so many microclimates here,” she says. “Designing a garden in Parkdale is very different than designing one in Mosier.” Even a few miles in either direction in Hood River can make a difference, she says. Over time, McNew has also learned the geological nuances of the area—where the soil is sandy, where it’s heavier in clay, where boulders deposited by prehistoric floods proliferate, where the soil drains well or poorly. All of these things are important for cost estimating, she says, as well as for creating a successful landscape design. “It took quite a few years to acquire that knowledge,” she says. “It

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Gift Cards and Gift Wrapping Available!



A little new, A little old, A little bit of everything

1106 12th Street • Hood River Find Us on Facebook and Instagram


Oak Grove Store a place to remember

Antiques • Collectibles • Vintage An historic gathering place since 1908, restored in 2015.

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2120 Country Club Road, Hood River 541-399-6650 •


McNew designed and installed extensive landscaping, including a kitchen garden and several patios, at Sakura Ridge Farm and Lodge on Hood River’s Westside, above. At the Oak Street Hotel in downtown Hood River, McNew transformed a former sloped lawn into a lush perennial garden oasis complete with a sunken patio.

has been a challenge, but also very interesting.” Another integral part of McNew’s work is what she calls the plant habitat principle, a form of ecological planting design developed in her native Germany. “Plant choices are based on ecological, rather than purely aesthetic criteria,” she explains. “You group plants together that have similar needs and similar vigor.” The result is that plants in one area of a garden, for example, all have similar water needs and grow at a similar rate—the plants will “look congruent,” she says. “By providing the plants with their preferred habitat, they form compatible plant communities. They will thrive and flourish without excessive intervention by the gardener.” McNew strives to create low maintenance landscapes, and teaches clients how to perform routine maintenance. She and her crew also provide maintenance programs for clients, mainly in the spring and fall. Because she has so many longtime clients—some of whom she provides ongoing maintenance and others who continually add on or revamp landscapes, or whose large projects are implemented over several years—McNew has a waiting list for new clients. She is able to take on only 5 to 10 new projects every year. For all of her projects, big or small, McNew weaves a theme into the design. It could be as simple as a style of garden—a Mediterranean garden, for example, or a Zen garden—or more complex, as at Overlook Memorial Park where the

hillside landscape of carefully placed rocks and plantings simulates a river delta. It’s this artistry in landscape design that continues to intrigue McNew. Whether it’s a public park, where she starts with “a broad vision and explores all possibilities,” or a private residence, where she incorporates her client’s wishes along with architecture and surroundings to create a design, McNew finds the creativity of transforming a space most satisfying. “One of my strengths is visualizing possibilities,” she says. “People think landscaping is just plants. It’s really about vision.” For more, go to


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s p e c i a l

a d v e r t i s i n g

s e c t i o n

Spring chicks are here!

Your local source for organic home, farm & garden supplies

learn how to: grow organic food improve your soil attract beneficials feed your animals keep some bees preserve the harvest make your own cheese

541-632-3478 2035 12th St., Hood River


PROFESSIONAL & RELIABLE SERVICE TO HELP YOU TO CRAFT ONE-OF-A-KIND INTERIORS. We work with homeowners and businesses to achieve high-quality custom designs. Whether your style is contemporary, traditional, or somewhere in between, we work with you and your budget to create comfortable spaces that meet your unique style and needs. Services: • One Time Consultations • Interior & Exterior Colors • Room Refresh • New Construction Design Consultations. Start-to-finish: New Homes & Remodel

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Looking for inspiration? We have the latest trends in style and color.

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Visit The Garden Café Espresso, Breakfast & Lunch 541-386-6438 1086 Tucker Rd, Hood River

Your Gorge Paint Store 541-387-2468 | 1402 12th St, Hood River


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The Accidental Bakers For love of a baguette, Lou and Anne Gehrig launched a bakery


She has never baked A loaf of bread in her life Preferring instead, Wonder. Leslie Cook 1956-1979


Courtesy of Anne and Lou Gehrig



n 1978, the year Leslie Cook wrote her poem, most of us associated the word “bread” with something white, soft, sliced and topped with bologna or peanut butter. The Seventies was also the decade when many of us ventured to Europe to learn another language, explore art and architecture, and embrace other cultures through food and drink. One of the most important foods we got up close and personal with was bread — from long crispy baguettes to chocolate filled croissants.

Anne Gehrig was one of those adventurers. As part of her college education, she lived and studied in France. There she became infatuated with French bread. Upon returning to the United States, she set upon the task of recreating the delicious bread she had come to love in Europe. Through trial and error, she was able to create the delectable bread of her memory — crusty on the outside, airy and soft within, served straight out of the oven. At the same time, she fell in love with Lou Gehrig, an Odell, Ore., native with deep roots in the Hood River Valley. Lou’s own home-baked bread at the time was a multi-pound loaf of pumpkin bread, which they both agree was more useful as a doorstop than as something to consume. Flash forward to 1983. Lou and Anne were married and the parents of a one-year-old daughter, Jessie. Hood River was becoming known as a great place to visit, and with the tourists came new restaurants and specialty shops. Jackie Dee’s Gift Shop was one such downtown Hood River business. One day, while Lou was shopping there, he got in a discussion about French bread with the owner, Jackie Dee Betts. He described the fabulous baguettes his wife made. Before he knew it, Jackie had ordered 40 loaves and the Gehrigs were in the bakery business. The Flour Garden Baking Company was born. At first, Anne and Lou mixed the dough completely without a machine, using a huge ceramic bowl, wooden spoons and bare hands. Soon demand for their bread necessitated equipment. Lou found a used “Century” mixer that was a cast-off from the Navy. “A century — that’s probably about how old it was,” Anne jokes. They bought a bank of ovens and set up shop in a downstairs room, now known as The Bakery. They consulted with other home businesses and got all the necessary licensure.


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Fresh Spring GREENERY Q oRGaNics / PRoDUcE DEli & bakERY mEat & sEafooD wiNE & bEER floRal

Q HUcklEbERRY’s NatURal maRkEt

Lou and Anne Gehrig, opposite inset, started Flour Garden Baking Company more than 30 years ago after Anne perfected a recipe for making French baguettes. As demand grew, they turned a downstairs room of their house into a bakery, and built a business.

Flour Garden grew quickly as they picked up new clients. The Gehrigs met their first financial goal, buying a couch they previously hadn’t had money to purchase. They leased out their orchard and their service station and Anne went back to work full time as an elementary school teacher while Lou became a full-time baker. They both got up each morning at 4 a.m., and Anne helped bake until school started. In addition to lots of new customers, their family had grown to three with the addition of sons Colin and Jonathan. Juggling baking, bread deliveries, kids and Anne’s teaching career was always a challenge, but they still laugh at some of their fondest memories. When the kids were toddlers, Lou would deliver them to daycare when he made the bread deliveries. “Lou would bring out the bread and then bring out the kids one at a time,” Anne recounts. “Jessie, the oldest, ate the tops off the bread while Lou was fetching another kid.” Lou continues, “I said, I’m going to be smarter than that. I’m going to get Colin and Jonathan and then the bread. Then I’ll go back in the house and get Jessie.” When he came out of the house, Colin had climbed into the driver’s seat and was pretending to drive. Somehow he got the Jeep out of gear and it rolled. Luckily, no one was hurt, and the kids and bread were delivered safely. The Gehrigs have had some other adventures over the years. They live high up in the East Hills, so snow and ice make bread deliveries interesting. In winter, they sometimes resort to pick-axes and boot chains to get themselves down the hill. The bread rides comfortably on their backs, packed carefully in their children’s old camping gear. But their favorite delivery story happened along Highway 35 many years ago. A Mount Hood restaurant owner, picking up his bread, rendezvoused with Lou along the side of the highway near the sawmill. Lou handed a bag of bread to his customer, and his customer got out his wallet. A suspicious onlooker called the police, assuming a drug deal was in progress. An officer soon arrived, and the three men had a good laugh. Over the years, Flour Garden has serviced over 30 different accounts, making and delivering delicious baked goods to myriad businesses — the local fruit packing houses, coffee shops, elegant restaurants and even gas stations. The Gehrig’s repertoire has evolved as the demands from customers have changed. In addition to baguettes (still their favorite thing to bake), they’ve made whole grain loaves, tri-color braids, pizza crusts, croissants,

1867 12th Street, Hood River • 541-386-1119


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130 SW Cascade Ave Stevenson, WA 98648


Lou Gehrig does much of the baking for Flour Garden, while Anne works as a schoolteacher in Hood River. Baguettes are still their favorite thing to bake, but the Gehrigs make a variety of other items for delivery to local stores, restaurants and businesses.

bread sticks, hamburger buns, focaccia and cranberry walnut bread. At one time, they were baking 72 bread sticks a day, five days a week, for hungry Hood River Valley High School students. Each bread stick had to be hand-rolled and topped with cheese, jalapenos or pepperoni. Eventually, the demand was too much for their small bakery and they were forced to give up the high school account. Anne and Lou love baking bread, but as they get older they sometimes think about ratcheting down the business. For now, you can enjoy Flour Garden’s baked goods at a dozen different businesses, including Ovino’s Market, the Farm Stand, Ground, Bette’s Place, Doppio and Boda’s Kitchen. Regardless of where you enjoy Flour Garden’s bread, you’ll agree, it’s not Wonder, it’s wonderful. Peggy Dills Kelter is an artist and writer who lives in Hood River. She’s a frequent contributor to The Gorge Magazine.

a d o cumentary film




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Provisions • Libations • Distilled Spirits Cocktails • Small Plates • Private Parties

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Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of marijuana. For use only by adults twenty-one years of age or older. Keep marijuana out of the reach of children.


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The Pretty Good House A Hood River home combines energy-efficiency with practicality BY JANET COOK • PHOTOS BY LAURIE BLACK


att and Mary Mesa first moved to the Gorge in 1984 from California. They settled in Mill A, Wash., close to Matt’s work as a research fisheries biologist. They built a house and a life there, raising their two daughters, leaving only for a stint while Matt got his master’s degree at Oregon State University. When he later pursued his Ph.D., he was able to do most of the work from home. Mary had a career as a schoolteacher in Stevenson.

Then, about five years ago, Mary was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimer’s disease. “We had to start making plans for the future,” Matt said. They knew they wanted to drastically downsize from their 3,700-square-foot, multi-level home to a house with a simple layout that was easy to navigate and maintain. Moving to Hood River made sense, not only because most of their shopping and social life already took place there, but also for proximity to medical facilities and other amenities. The couple still wanted to have some privacy and open space around them. They eventually found some land for sale on Hood River’s Westside that had all utilities in place. (A house once built on the property had been moved to another location.) They bought the land, spanning more than four acres, and began planning for their new home where they could age in place in the best way possible. Matt wanted to build a contemporary house that was very energy efficient. He researched green building ideas, including the passive house concept popularized in Germany. “The whole idea is building a really tight, energy efficient house, with strict specs to follow,” Matt said. “The problem is it can be prohibitively expensive if you follow all the guidelines.” His research led him to a relatively new green building movement known as the Pretty Good House. “It’s taking the passive house concept and structuring it for the common man,” Matt said. “It’s looking at what’s really important in the passive house, and what are parts of it we could ignore. It’s building a smaller home that’s mostly efficient.” Although he knew several contractors in the area, Matt sought out Green Home Construction for its “commitment to energy efficiency,” he said. Matt proposed the Pretty Good House idea, and Green Home owner Tom Reid and his crew were excited to pursue the concept. 28

The result is a 1,500-square-foot, single-level home with multiple energy efficient features combined with some cost-saving measures. Double stud walls create about twice the insulation found in regular code-built homes. Attention was paid to creating a very tight building envelope — including its slab-on-grade foundation — which makes it possible to heat the house entirely with a small gas fireplace and a mini split heat pump; often just one or the other is enough. The southern exposure allows for passive solar heating, and carefully placed eaves help block direct sunlight during the summer. Concrete floors throughout the house create thermal mass to help further regulate the home’s temperature. Due to the multiple insulation factors, the Mesas “compromised” on windows, going for a middle-of-the-road option rather than more expensive, highly insulated ones. Fiber-cement siding and a metal roof add to the home’s long-term durability and low maintenance costs. “This house was a mix of higher end finishes along with some very cost effective ones,” Reid, said. “In the end, I think it strikes a nice balance


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between being well designed, well built and yet still affordable.” The Mesas, who have lived in their new home for a year-and-a-half, are pleased with it. “The house has been performing pretty well energy-wise,” Matt said. In addition, the design and construction exceeded his expectations. “The attention to detail by Green Home was impeccable. The craftsmanship was really there,” he said. “It’s just so practical,” Matt added. “It’s a great combination of energy efficiency and practicality.”

Matt and Mary Mesa’s 1,500-square-foot home features a simple layout, including a combined kitchen, dining area and living room that opens through a giant sliding door onto a patio for indoor-outdoor living. Features like double stud walls, concrete floors and southern exposure create energy efficiency, helping keep the home warm in the winter and cool in the summer.


“Green Home helped us achieve our goal to be sustainable and also showed us how choosing solar would be the right dollars and cents decision.” — Peter Belmont

541.948.1280 1824 Cascade Ave., Hood River, OR

Gorgeous Jewelry, Creative Custom Design and Local Handmade Fun

(541) 387-4367 • 409 Oak Street • Downtown Hood River, Oregon




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Camas and Washougal Towns near Washington’s gateway to the Gorge beckon visitors with an enticing blend of old and new STORY BY VIKI EIERDAM • PHOTOS COURTESY OF DOWNTOWN CAMAS ASSOCIATION AND CAMAS-WASHOUGAL CHAMBER OF COMMERCE


s the gateway to the Columbia River Gorge National Scenic Area on the Washington side, Washougal abounds with its own flavor of attractions. Recent growth has supported the addition of familyfriendly breweries and restaurants with a locally focused sourcing philosophy. A few miles to the west lies the town of Camas, boasting tree-lined streets along its walkable downtown core. Here, the vibe is decidedly more cosmopolitan—in a small town kind of way.

Together, these two cities are well worth a visit on your way to or from the Gorge—or simply as a destination unto themselves. Since 1912 Pendleton Woolen Mills Washougal Mill has been crafting Native American-inspired blankets from 100 percent wool. Over the years a contemporary line of clothing, home textiles and accessories has been added. Complimentary tours are given at set times on weekdays allowing guests to experience the many steps that go into bringing these intricate pieces to life. At the end of the tour, take time to browse the extensive store. If this look back in time has whetted your appetite for more, delve a little deeper next door at the Two Rivers Heritage Museum. Rotating exhibits have included a one-room schoolhouse from the late 1800s, historic photos of the area’s early years and artifacts documenting Washougal as a stopping point on Lewis and Clark’s Corp of Discovery journey. Directly across Highway 14—via the SR-14 Pedestrian Tunnel—is the entrance to a multi-use trail that runs along the dike and drops down onto Cottonwood Beach Park (where Captain Lewis camped in 1806), or you can continue the full three miles into the Steigerwald Lake National Wildlife Refuge. Once there, meander along the Gibbons Creek Wildlife Art Trail to enjoy the hundreds of potential bird sightings. This is a great spot for a late picnic or just a place to ponder and stroll. From April through July, Mt. Pleasant Iris Farm is bursting with color and the public is encouraged to view the display for themselves. Only 10 minutes from downtown, it feels like a world away. Revel in the shades of blue, purple, yellow and more. Owner Chad Harris has been growing irises for more than 35 years, and is a Master Judge with the American Iris Society. 30

Located north of downtown on the Washougal River, Sandy Swimming Hole Park is the place to be when the sun comes out. For more warm weather options, check out Lacamas Lake in Camas. No gear? No problem. Sweetwater SUP Rentals can outfit you with paddleboards and kayaks. Brewcouver has infiltrated East County. From 54°40’, Amnesia and Doomsday Brewing in Washougal to A Beer at a Time, Caps N’ Taps and Mill City Brew Werks in Camas, hopheads can partake in some pretty terrific breweries and tap houses—


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Picturesque downtown Camas offers a variety of shops and restaurants, including the iconic Natalia’s Café, opposite. The Wednesday Farmer’s Market draws visitors and locals for fresh, seasonal produce. Lacamas Lake, above, located a few miles north of Camas and Washougal, offers hiking, fishing and boating opportunities.

many of which serve up comfort food to accompany your pint of choice. Aspiring artists will want to check out The Paint Roller. Owners Rich Beck and Kathy Dering schedule this mobile paint party at hot spots in the area with themes that include Brushes and Brews, Coupled Canvas and Canvas and Cupcakes (for the little ones). From the year-round Camas First Fridays that draw people in for after-hours shopping to the seasonal Wednesday Farmer’s Market, this town really knows how to build community and promote local. Take a morning to browse unique clothing stores such as Lily Atelier, Allure Boutique and the Vutique or home décor stores like Lizzabeth A and Camas Antiques. At Navidi’s Olive Oils & Vinegars, you can taste all of the oils, vinegars and sea salts carried here. Dubbed as a specialty food store, there’s more to Navidi’s than the name suggests. When the sun goes down, there’s still exploring to do. Take in a show at the historic Liberty Theatre— built circa 1927. Meticulously restored in 2011, the Liberty offers traditional concession snacks as well as premium beer and wine selections available in both screening rooms. Enjoy a craft cocktail at Birch Street

Relax&Recreate IN SCENIC HOOD RIVER ASK ABOUT WINTER SKI PACKAGES Just minutes to outdoor fun, shopping, dining, breweries, world-class wine tasting complimentary hot breakfast indoor pool & spa high-speed wireless internet in-room microwave & refrigerator fitness room & guest laundry CONVENIENTLY LOCATED OFF I-84 2625 Cascade Avenue • Hood River, OR 541-308-1000


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OUR GORGE : EXPLORE Uptown Lounge. The staff here is passionate about adult beverages, and weekends feature live music that Portlanders travel across the bridge for. Dinner can be as casual as Twilight Pizza Bistro, as international as Miss Nola’s Café or Nuestra Mesa or a little unique—like The Puffin Café, a floating restaurant at the Port of Camas/Washougal. At Feast 316, diners enjoy handmade pasta, fresh seafood and prime cuts like New York strip and Filet Mignon. Washougal and Camas blend the best of outdoor adventure and a sophisticated flare into one synergistic destination. Viki Eierdam is a freelance writer and frequent contributor to The Gorge Magazine

RESOURCE GUIDE Visit Washougal, Downtown Camas, Camas-Washougal Chamber of Commerce, • Feast 316, 316 N.E. Dallas St., Camas, • The Camas Hotel, • Best Western Plus Parkersville • Hearth—Wood Oven Bistro 1700 Main St. Ste. 110, Washougal Inn & Suites—Washougal, • River Bend Lodge, listing #1150 • Mill City Brew Werks, 339 N.E. Cedar, Camas, on • Miss Nola’s Café, 401 N.E. 4th Ave., Camas, Dining and Drinking • 54°40’ Brewing, 3801 S Truman • Natalia’s Café, 437 N.E. 4th Ave., Camas Rd., Washougal, • Amnesia Brewing, 1834 Main St., • Nuesta Mesa, 228 N.E. 4th Ave., Camas, Washougal, • Our Bar, 1887 Main St., Washou• Birch Street Uptown Lounge gal, 311 N.E. Birch St., Camas • The Puffin Café, 14 S. A St., Washougal —floating restaurant • Caffe Piccolo, 400 N.E. 4th at the Port of Camas/Washougal Ave., Camas, • Doomsday Brewing Company • Wildflower Café and Cupcakes 421 C St. Unit 1B, Washougal 3010 Evergreen Hwy., Washougal

Where to Stay

We have everything from edibles to concentrates and incredible crafted glass work from local artists.

Sites to See

Camas Farmers Market,; Cottonwood BeachEast Dike Trail,; First Fridays,; Liberty Theatre,; Mt. Pleasant Iris Farm,; Navidi’s Olive Oils,; Pendleton Woolen Mills Washougal Mill,; Riverside Concert Series,; Sandy Swimming Hole,; The Paint Roller,; Two Rivers Heritage Museum,; Washougal Motocross Park,

Getting There

Distance: 49 miles, Driving Time: 1 hour From Hood River, take I-84 toward Portland, then US-30 west crossing the Bridge of the Gods to WA-14 west. The downtown cores of Washougal and Camas are less than five miles apart. 32


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Say “hello” to Spring with a refreshing stroll through the vineyards, rafting on a scenic river, bicycling through lush forests or windsurfing in the bright sunshine…Klickitat County has it all! Finish a wonderful scenic driving loop tour with a visit to our premium wineries, museums, colorful shops and festive restaurants. Oh, and meet some of the friendliest folks around. Life is just Better on the northside… join us this spring Mountain Biking

Fine Dining


Goldendale Observatory

Maps and Activity Brochures available at: • (509) 493-3630 • Highway 14 at the Hood River Bridge • (509) 773-3400 • 903 Broadway, Goldendale

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Adam Lapierre


Phelps Creek Vineyards Phelps Creek Vineyard

From a steep Hood River Valley hillside comes some uniquely Gorge wines, with a touch of France STORY BY VIKI EIERDAM • PHOTOS BY ADAM LAPIERRE AND COURTESY OF PHELPS CREEK VINEYARDS


He connected with that community, including Cliff Blanchette and his wife Eileen—who owned the oldest winery in the area, Hood River Vineyards; Lonnie Wright, another Gorge wine pioneer who has since helped many Gorge vineyards and winemakers find their way, as well as created the respected The Pines 1852 vineyards and winery; and Bill Swain, a seasoned enologist and winemaker. “The story is that everyone in the community was always waiting for the wine scene to take hold,” Morus said, “so anyone who came in with interest was embraced by them and they were very helpful.”

Adam Lapierre


n enthusiastic community, ideal vineyard site and strong team could be considered a vintner’s trifecta. If so, Robert Morus, founder of Phelps Creek Vineyards, was the lucky soul to hit it nearly three decades ago. This stability and support has allowed him to focus his energy on growing a brand that, more recently, shares a commonality with Gevrey-Chambertin, the famed village in Burgundy, France, that produces some of the most prestigious and expensive wines in the world. “There was no vineyard here at the time,” Morus said of the hillside property on Hood River’s Westside that he found for sale the first time he visited the area. Morus, a pilot for Delta Airlines, had been on a scouting trip to Oregon, looking for vineyard property within a 90-mile radius of Portland International Airport. “There was just land and there was a lot of welcoming by the wine community, which was smaller then.” SPRING 2017 : THE GORGE MAGAZINE

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Phelps Creek Vineyard

Estate Grown Pinot Noir Pinot Gris Riesling Chardonnay

finely crafted wines mountain and vineyard views spring blossoms


tasting daily from




2882 V an H orn d riVe , H ood r iVer / 541-386-8333 mtHoodWinery . com

Phelps Creek Vineyards owner Robert Morus planted his first three acres of Pinot Noir on his hillside property in Hood River in 1990. His estate vineyards now encompass 34 acres of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, and he grows several other varietals on vineyard sites on the Washington side of the Columbia River.

Because Blanchette was already making great Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, Morus was confident these two Burgundian varietals were well suited for the western side of the Columbia Gorge. Morus planted his first three-acre block of Pinot Noir in 1990, followed by Chardonnay in 1992. Over time, Irineo Magana, cellar/vineyard manager, came on board and has now been with Phelps Creek for more than 20 years. At the 2016 Oregon Wine Symposium, Magana was bestowed the Vineyard Excellence Award. The honor symbolizes the expertise and dedication that Magana brings to the vines he’s been entrusted with. During his watch, the vineyards have increased sevenfold. With similar growing characteristics to the Dundee Hills in the Willamette Valley, Phelps Creek Vineyards is nevertheless strongly influenced by its higher elevation—as much as 500 feet higher. “Burgundy Grand Cru sits at 300 meters so we’re closer in elevation than the Willamette Valley, and the Willamette Valley has coastal influences,” Morus said. “That doesn’t mean one is better, just that they’re different and we celebrate that diversity.” With so much talk of Burgundy, it’s no surprise that Phelps Creek has a strong connection to this legacy region. Alexandrine Roy, a fourth generation winemaker at Domaine Marc Roy in Gevrey-Chambertin, joined Phelps Creek a few years ago after Morus met her at a pre-International Pinot Noir Celebration luncheon. Roy was initially a contributing winemaker but now is director of winemaking at Phelps Creek and travels to Hood River several times each year to affect her style upon the wines and craft her signature cuvée.


info @ mtHoodWinery . com

Mt. Hood Winery

Photo by Jennifer Gulizia

Oregon Winery of the Year - 2016 Oregon Wine of the Year - 2014 Pinot Noir Wine Press Northwest


Our BOUTIQUE WINERY takes pride in producing high-quality wines sourced from the FINEST VINEYARDS in the region. We specialize in Cabernet, Merlot, Zinfandel, Syrah, and Chardonnay. Come sample our wine, relax on our patio and enjoy stunning VIEWS of the Columbia River and Mount Hood.

OPEN: Nov-Apr Thu-Mon 11-5 • May-Oct Daily 10-6 • Find us on Facebook 541-645-0462 • 3 Avery Rd (Avery Park HWY 14), Wishram, WA


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Award winning wines, friendly staff, bocce courts and a beautiful deck. Come see us!

Phelps Creek Vineyard and Brian W. Robb (middle bottom)


Vineyard tours are a hallmark of Phelps Creek, where participants can walk the rows of vines and learn the nuances of winegrowing, then visit the winery facilities and taste directly from the barrels. Alexandrine Roy, above right, director of winemaking, visits Phelps Creek several times a year from her own winery in Burgundy, France, to affect her style on the wines and craft her signature cuvee. welcoming tasting room & patio

5.5 scenic miles south of hood river on hwy 35

541.386.1277 /

Adam Lapierre

Open Daily 11-5 or so

Recently, Roy tasted through 100 barrels of estate Pinot Noir—half of which undergoes spontaneous native fermentation—with Morus and Swain. Their rating system edits the production down to the most extraordinary 10 barrels, which become approximately 240 cases of Cuvée Alexandrine. The international attention that Phelps Creek has received for its Cuvée Alexandrine as well as its estate blend will be front and center at the 2017 International Pinot Noir Celebration Grand Seminar. As winemaker of both Phelps Creek and Domaine Marc Roy in Burgundy, Roy will share the platform with four other esteemed vignerons who combine the Old World stylings of France with New World interpretations. With 34 acres of estate Pinot Noir and Chardonnay, Phelps Creek diversified its lineup a couple of years ago by taking over operations of two other vineyard sites on the Washington side of the Gorge. Cool weather Sauvignon Blanc, Gewürztraminer, Pinot Gris and Viognier grow on 15 acres that adjoin Celilo Vineyards on Underwood Mountain. The first impression that guests at the Phelps Creek tasting room receive is a unique one. Rather than views of lush vines, there are frames of the back nine. Since the vineyard itself sits at the end of a steep, mile-long gravel road, Morus opened a tasting room at the nearby Hood River Golf and Country Club, which he felt would lend a similar pastoral feel but be easier for customers to reach. For those who want to delve a little deeper into the glass, Phelps Creek offers tours and wine club events. From May to October, reservations can be made to walk the rows of vines, take in the stunning views, visit the winery facilities and, ultimately, migrate to the barrels to taste the seasons and nuances that each clone brings to the bottle.



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“They come away saying they’ve never been so close to the wine,” Morus said of wine tour participants. “We have great tasting room experiences but a deeper appreciation of the intimacy of winemaking is gathered (on our tours) and those people become our most passionate fans.” Wine club members benefit from three separate events that coincide with new releases. March showcases barrel tastings of the latest vintages; a picnic in the vineyard ushers in June; and the September salmon and prime rib thank you party—hosted under the stars—includes live music and is always a hit. Morus has also been known to throw Burgundian-inspired harvest celebrations where lobster is flown in from the East Coast and library wines are poured. Morus, who flies international long-haul flights, could own a winery nearly anywhere in the world. The fact that he chose Hood River speaks volumes, not only to the Oak Grove loam his award-winning vines are rooted in, but to the close-knit community he calls home. For more information, including tour reservations, go to

Viki Eierdam is a freelance writer and frequent contributor to The Gorge Magazine.




THE NEXT GENERATION OF WASHINGTON WINE can be found in the heart of the incredible Columbia Gorge, only 75 breathtaking minutes east of Portland.

For individual winery info: WINERIES OF LYLE.COM


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GENERAL TIPS FOR VISITING GORGE WINE COUNTRY Courtesy of the Columbia Gorge Winegrowers Association

S Consider hiring a designated driver. S Refrain from wearing heavily scented items, such as perfumes and lotions. Even lipstick can affect your wine tasting experience. Allow the day to be filled with the aromas of wine!

Women Made Artisan Wine Blends 301 Oak St | Hood River OR 844-344-9010 x2 71 Little Buck Creek Rd | Underwood WA 844-344-9010 x1

S Explore varietals unfamiliar to you. Often these can be a delightful surprise. S Ask tasting room staff questions. Gorge residents are proud to live here and serve local wines, and love to share wine knowledge with others. Ask staff where to have dinner, or where to stay, hike and play. S Don’t be afraid to use the dump buckets. It is not a sign that you don’t care for a wine, and no one will be offended if you spit out a wine or dump what is left in your glass. On the contrary, most wine staff appreciate that it may be necessary to not swallow every wine in order to maintain your wine tasting pleasure and maintain your palate. S Try a mid-week excursion. Often tasters who visit on a weekday find the tasting rooms more intimate and the experience more one-on-one. S Have fun. Don’t take it too seriously. After all, wine is about enjoyment on your personal level. Drink what you like and enjoy with others.


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Discover Beautiful


Dive into spring by spending some time in Hood River. With the longer, warmer days come spring activities, including April’s Hood River Valley Blossom Time and its many related events. Downtown Hood River and the Heights feature dozens of unique shops and boutiques, jewelers, restaurants, breweries, wine tasting rooms, bakeries, coffee shops, galleries, museums and more. Come see what all the buzz is about this spring in Hood River.



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mark etpl ace: ho od ri ver



Visit the Western Antique Aeroplane and Automobile Museum and see one of the largest collections of still flying antique vehicles in the country. A large new expansion has recently opened to accomodate more cars and antique engines, and allow for an expanded Kid’s Zone. Open daily from 9am-5pm.

Designers, goldsmiths, and craftsmen, we make and repair in our state-of-theart workshop. Ken Apland brings 38 years of experience as a goldsmith and gemologist, so whether you need to have old jewelry redesigned, an heirloom restored, or an entirely new design made we can create it using reclaimed metals and responsibly sourced gems.

1600 Air Museum Road • (541) 308-1600

216 Oak Street • 541-386-3977



We are artists and professional jewelers. If you are looking for something special, we can custom design it. We work with silver, gold, platinum and more. We can use your stone or work with you to find the perfect stone for your needs. Hood River Jewelers also carries beautiful timepieces, diamond jewelry and designer collections.

Since 1959 Stationery • Greeting Cards • Gifts Home Decor • Art Supplies • Fine Pens Office Products

415 Oak Street • 541-386-6440

TACY’S PLACE TRINKETS & TREASURES BOUTIQUE The perfect place to find a gift, with a little something for everyone. Featuring Jim Shore, Pre de Provence soaps and Tocca fragrances. Coming this spring, Willow Tree figurines, Bedford Cottage Throws, Jaipur Rugs, Art Hearts, Bear Foots, Dean Crouser, and so much more. Spring Hours: Mon–Fri 10am-5pm, Sat 10am-4pm. Closed on Sundays.

Life is always a special occasion, and we can help you celebrate! 213 Oak Street • 541-386-2344 See us on Facebook

KNOT ANOTHER HAT Got wool? At Knot Another Hat, you won’t just find beautiful yarns to knit or crochet, but also an amazing selection of one-of-a-kind hand knit garments and accessories for sale. Adults hats, scarves, shawls, hats for babies and children, women’s sweaters – all out of natural fibers like merino wool, alpaca, cotton, silk, even bison and angora! Stop by and see (and feel) for yourself today!

1106 12th Street • Find us on Facebook

11 Third Street, #103 • 541-308-0002



At Rosauers Supermarket you will find: a floral, deli, bakery, and meat department as well as Huckleberry’s Natural Foods section. We offer you one-stop shopping for a broad array of natural and organic products that are viable and wonderful alternatives to the conventional supermarket world. We bake everything from scratch using only the finest, fresh ingredients… let us help you create the perfect wedding or special event cake!

You will find a great combination of home decor items plus unique artisan jewelry. Twiggs has beautiful glassware, ceramics, candles, wall decor, and more. This is the perfect place to find gifts for brides and bridesmaids. 305 Oak Street • 541-386-6188 Find us on Facebook

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Story By Cate Hotchkiss • Portraits By Paloma Ayala • Inside Photos Courtesy of Bikers

Three Gorge residents find solace—and a lot of other things—in long-distance bicycle touring

Ernest Hemingway wrote, “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them.” It’s also

how you get to know the people of a country best, according to the three Gorge cyclists profiled here who travel epic distances by bike. What else beckons them to long stretches of road and trail? Read on . . .


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Bart Cohn



Jeff Hirsch


n a hot August day in 2013, Bart Cohn and his dad were riding their recumbent bikes on the Twin Tunnels trail from Hood River to Mosier where, while taking a break, a cyclist riding west on a touring bike loaded with bags pedaled toward them. Curious, Cohn called out, “Hey, where are you headed?” That simple question sparked a conversation that would change Cohn’s course for years to come. They learned that the cyclist, Robbie Sweetser, was heading to the coast where he would end a 5,400-mile bike journey from North Carolina. “It just blew me away!” Cohn says. “He didn’t look like some uber-athlete from the Gorge. He just looked like some normal guy in his late 50s.” The Cohns rode with Sweetser back to Hood River while Bart bombarded him with questions about bike touring. “How do you know how to do this?” he asked, and “Could a guy like me do this?” A guy like Cohn was a guy who was “feeling his mortality,” he says, even though he was only in his early 40s. In 2012, he’d had a serious mountain biking accident that landed him in the hospital. A year later, he spent his 43rd birthday having foot and ankle surgery, also related to a mountain biking injury. “I felt like, gosh, maybe I’m too old to be doing stuff like this,” he says. Riding the recumbent bike was part of his rehab. Sweetser steered Cohn toward the Adventure Cycling Association’s website, a go-to source for touring cyclists, where Cohn was lured by the legendary TransAmerica Trail, a 4,200-mile bike route across the U.S. Before long, he’d committed to riding it, even though he’d never taken an overnight bike trip or cycled more than 50 miles in a day. “I’d finally come upon something that seemed at a pace that I could handle,” Cohn explains. “Bike touring

Bart Cohn, clockwise from above, at the Gateway Arch in St. Louis; riding near Breckenridge, in Summit County, Colorado; crossing the Continental Divide in Yellowstone National Park, Wyoming.

people are people who just keep pedaling.” After obsessively planning the trip for nearly three years and recovering from a slipped disk in 2015, he finally took off on May 11, 2016. “Virginia or bust!” That’s what Cohn’s wife, Karen, posted on her Facebook page at the start of his epic adventure in Astoria, Ore., with a photo of him in a Grateful Dead jersey standing next to his bike—a Surly Long Haul Trucker decked out with neon-yellow panniers, laminated hardwood fenders, and Rastafariancolored metal spacer rings on the handlebar stem. “I put a lot of stuff on my bike that made me happy,” he says—and that he hoped would also spread positivity to others. Cohn feared injury going into the trip more than traffic or inclement weather. But his body surprisingly cooperated. “I just tried to show up in good shape,” he says. His daily training had consisted of riding his bike 15 miles, walking for an hour, and swimming a half mile. On the trail, he rode about 300 miles a week, except for a planned 10-day stop in St. Louis, his hometown, and an unplanned five-day layover in Rainbow, Ore., due to snow on the mountain passes. Staying in Rainbow was perhaps fated, Cohn believes. It allowed Ian Graves, a 59-year-old cyclist from Las Vegas whom Cohn had originally met in the Siuslaw National Forest, to catch up and with whom he rode for the next 1,800 miles. Cohn called him “the man with the bionic heart” because of his recent heart valve replacement. To overcome his own challenges, Graves recited a mantra, Endeavor to Persevere—words that also resonated with Cohn. The kindness of the many locals he met along the way like James Yeager, a farmer-barber from Ness City, Kan., also fueled Cohn’s ride. On July 12, Yeager cut Cohn’s hair. The next day, Cohn received a phone call from Yeager who had retrieved his number from the barber shop caller ID. “He asked if I was okay because he was worried about me with all the thunderstorms in the area,” Cohn explains. That kind of support was not infrequent nor was the positive response he got to his bike and psychedelic jersey from all sorts of people, he says—from moms to cowboys. He finished the last leg of the ride from Sebree, Ky., to Yorktown, Va., with 64-year-old Yoram Ephraim from Israel. As they readied themselves to tackle rural Appalachia, known to cyclists for its pedal-snapping dogs, barreling coal trucks, and lung-busting hills, Cohn and Ephraim debated whether to circumvent that section of the trail. Ultimately, they decided to forge ahead with Ephraim’s mantra: We go with courage. They encountered lots of dogs, but no dog bites; fewer trucks than they’d anticipated; and some of the poorest, yet kindest, people Cohn has ever met, he says. In many ways, the trail was a great equalizer—oblivious to age, salaries, religion and politics. “On the trail, those barriers were all gone,” says Cohn. By the time he rolled up to the Yorktown Victory Monument on Sept. 6, so were his own.


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Celilo Restaurant and Bar Pacific Northwest cuisine with an emphasis on locally grown products, extensive wine list, and full bar.

Oregon A-List Award Regional Spotlight Recipient

Erica Nelson, from top, navigating rocky terrain in the Bitterroot Mountains of Montana; stopping for a rest in Wyoming; and on a lonely road in Colorado

Erica Nelson



n 2014, Erica Nelson was halfway into a two-month cycling tour through eight countries skirting the Baltic Sea when she was alerted by her neighbors in White Salmon that a wildfire was scorching its way toward her home. “There was a possibility that my house could burn down, but when I turned around and looked at my trailer full of everything that I needed, I thought, ‘I’m lacking nothing that’s not right here with me. I’m okay,’” Nelson says. Bike touring, she says, reminds us of how simple life can be. It’s an insight, among many others, that she’s gleaned from more than 20 years of embracing what she calls “self-contained, human-powered adventures.” Prior to the Baltic Sea trip, she pedaled through New Zealand for six months; across the greenways of the Czech Republic; and around Chile’s Lake District. She’s also been tackling, in segments, the world’s longest mountain bike trail: the 2,700-mile Great Divide Mountain Bike Route (GDMBR) that stretches from Canada to Mexico, zigzagging the Continental Divide. So far, she’s cycled through Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado with New Mexico still to go. “Part of venturing out to the Continental Divide and riding parts of it solo is about, ‘What am I made of? What am I capable of? What’s beyond what I know now?’” Nelson explains. With some 200,000 feet of total elevation gain through remote wilderness, the trail is as tough as it is stunning. “It’s an experience in contrasts,” she says. “While riding, I feel the elation of reaching summits, only to plummet at joyous and high speeds back down to the elevations that I had just spent hours climbing—only to begin climbing again.” One of the most daunting sections, she says, was riding solo across the 200-mile Great Basin of Wyoming—an arid, edgeless expanse with no towns along the way. “The landscape is so desolate that I actually experienced vertigo because there was nothing to focus on. When you’re out there on your own, there’s no other way but through it. That’s when the mental fortitude kicks in,” she says. The rewards, however, are well worth the effort. Nelson recounts when, after a long day of trundling through the wilting heat of southern Montana in August, a mother-daughter rancher team scooped her up. “They invited me in for a farm-fresh meal, ice cream, and a soft bed for the night. It’s the simple gestures

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of kindness and concern that remain memorable. It’s also the sublime moments of watching a moose and calf feed in a lake as the morning fog lifts; taking the time to watch a beaver build a dam; or making camp in a field of wildflowers with a double rainbow overhead after a long day.” Whether Nelson is touring on her mountain bike or road bike, she pulls a single-wheel BOB trailer loaded with food (PB&J is a staple), gear and clothing, which always includes a skirt to change into after pedaling all day. “I want to be able to get out of these stinky, tight cycling clothes when I pull into town and look like a girl for a little bit,” she says. She also leaves room in her schedule for spontaneous adventures. “I may have a goal for the day or for the trip, but I really try to embrace each day as it comes along,” she says. “If a fantastic swimming hole appears, it’s time for a swim! If a river seems too perfect not to fish, then I’ll take a day off for fishing. I’ve been welcomed into families’ homes, invited to spend time on farms, participate in festivals, and be an impromptu guest speaker. If I was attached to miles and destinations, I would miss these connections.” On touring alone as a woman, she says she’s always felt safe. (Although, she does worry about black bears and grizzlies when camping in the backcountry.) “We sit in front of our televisions and fear is fed to us. Turn off your television and go ride your bike, or go travel, and you will learn that the world is full of lovely people,” she says. When she’s not traveling herself, Nelson stays engaged in bike touring by hosting other cyclists through the Warm Showers program, an international exchange that provides touring cyclists with a free place to stay. She’s been hosting for eight years. “Every year, it seems like there’s more and more cyclists coming through the Gorge,” she says. “I’m on a map, my phone number is there, and cyclists call me up. You meet them, fix them a meal, give them breakfast, and send them down the road in the morning.” She once hosted 19 teenagers biking across the country on an organic farm tour. They pitched tents on her 20-acre pasture and she made them a big pile of lasagna. “I hear about their stories and their adventures and that gets me excited about doing my own trips,” she says, which include plans to meander along several of Oregon’s Scenic Bikeways this summer. “There’s so much to discover right here.”

Thomas Camero



n 1966, Thomas Camero wanted to go to Acapulco, Mexico. “I had time, but I didn’t have any money,” says Camero, who had just graduated from California State University, Long Beach. “So I said, ‘Heck, I’ll just ride there.’” Never mind that bicycle touring wasn’t really a thing then. “There were no panniers to be had, there was one bicycling magazine, no one was doing it,” Camero explains. After driving from Long Beach to Tucson, Ariz., where his aunt lived, Camero parked his car at her house, secured his gear and guitar to his 10-speed with bungee cords and wire baskets, and headed south. About six weeks and 1,600 miles later, he was in Acapulco watching the cliff divers. “That was my first big ride,” Camero says. “I just got on my bike and rode. It’s so hard to get off that cloud after you’ve finished something like that. All you can do is plan your next ride.” Since then, he’s cycled the Pacific Coast from Oregon to Mexico; from Jasper, Alberta to Yellowstone; from Mazatlan, Mexico to the Panama Canal; throughout Cuba five times; and across the U.S. four times—most notably in 2014 at age 73 in the first-ever Trans Am Bike Race on the TransAmerica Trail. “With no entry fee, no prizes, no T-shirt and no drafting, how could you go wrong?” Camero says about his decision to sign up. “And no crew,” he adds. “You’re on your own. You gotta figure it out. This is the backpacking thing. I’m at the far end of the backpacking model for sure, but it’s incredible.” On June 7, he rolled up to the start line in Astoria alongside 44 other cyclists, popped a bottle of Champagne, toasted the race organizers and took off. “Within a minute, I was in last place,” he says, in part because he was the only one towing a trailer loaded with extra food and gear. “I’m not very fast, but I was still racing.” Jacob Wilson, a 32-year-old cyclist from Washington D.C., who wasn’t


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2/23/17 12:20 PM Thomas Camero, from top, in Grand Teton National Park during the inaugural TransAm Bike Race in 2014; during one of his five bike tours in Cuba; and at a landmark stop at a bike shop in Newton, Kans., on the TransAm.

racing but who was also riding the trail that summer, knew of Camero before he’d ever met him. “He’d become a trail legend,” Wilson says. “Other cyclists I passed and chatted with said that there was a guy in the race in last place and if you come across him, he might offer you a drink from his third water bottle, which was filled with whiskey. I thought, ‘Am I going to meet this dude and if so, will I be cool enough to get offered the third flask?’” In early September, Wilson caught up with “the legend” in Booneville, Ky., (named after Daniel Boone) where they both sipped from that fabled third bottle at the Booneville Presbyterian Church Cyclists’ Only camp, their lodging for the night. “Tom was the only one left in the race and he was still as pumped about it as ever,” Wilson recalls. “He seemed super positive and excited about whatever the day was going to bring or whatever the day delivered. He felt good to be around.” After 116 days of pedaling, Camero made history as one of only 25 finishers in the inaugural event. He raced again in 2016, finishing in 97 days after ditching the trailer, and with it, 75 pounds. Equal to Camero’s enthusiasm for the TransAm is his passion for cycling through Cuba, where for more than a decade he’s been able to easily get tourist cards because of his fluency in Spanish—learned during his Peace Corps service in Honduras. While touring, he stops in each town’s parque central, the town center where people hang out, and often begins playing his guitar. “Soon someone else comes by with a saxophone,” he says. “Then someone brings you a beer. You’re just playing along and before you know it, it’s a party. Wherever it is, it happens time and again.” He then hands out used guitar and violin strings which he collects from his Hood River musician friends before each trip. The Cuban musicians, he says, can’t believe it as they can’t get them because imported items are prohibitively expensive. “I mean, these are musicians. To be without strings… .” Camero was planning to visit Cuba a sixth time in January this year until, while searching for flight deals, he discovered he could travel to Southeast Asia for only a hundred bucks more; so instead, he planned a tour from Bangkok to Singapore, around 1,800 miles. “It’s one of the classic international rides and it’s just 8 to 10 dollars a day to stay in these incredible places,” he says. “The meals are amazing. Wanna go?” This ride, he explains, will help him get his bike kit together for Tour Aotearoa in New Zealand, slated for February 2018, which also covers 1,800 miles. “Doing all these big bike rides instills a good amount of confidence in other places and people,” Camero says. “Goodness seems to always prevail. Most times, all is good on a bike. Really good.” Camero will host a screening of the documentary, “Inspired to Ride,” about the inaugural TransAm Bike Race on April 1 at Columbia Center for the Arts. Based in Hood River, Cate Hotchkiss writes about health and wellness for national and regional magazines. She blogs at

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uan Reyes is a property appraiser for Hood River County, and a father of three daughters. He’s a DJ on Radio Tierra. He volunteers to teach computer and GED classes in Spanish, and is the best-known Mexican wedding officiant in the Gorge. He’s not a farmworker, or a migrant, or in the shadows, but he surely knows the life. Juan’s mother was pregnant with him when she came here from Mexico in 1984. “I grew up in the Gorge, working in the orchards as soon as I was old enough to go out, picking strawberries, cherries, apples, pears, cucumbers.” Soon, the English he learned in school allowed him to get jobs in retail and finally, to work for the county, where he’s been for eight years. Juan and 6,900 Latinos, mostly from Mexico, make up 30.5 percent of Hood River County’s population. For the most part, the rest of us here do not interact with them much. Sure, we eat lunch at El Cuate’s Burgers and Tacos or toss off an “Hola!” to people who look Mexican to us. But we don’t know much about the culture of a third of our neighbors. We stumble over what to call them. We don’t know how they live their lives or even how we might get to know them better. Hispanic? Latino? Mexican? If you want the right “handle,” here’s advice from Yesenia Castro, a program coordinator at The Next Door: “Hispanic refers to the Mexican colonizers from Spain. But that’s the box we have to check on forms, on the census. Most people identify first with the country they’re from, but Latino is better than Hispanic.”

Ramon Martinez

Yesenia Castro

Understanding our 30 percent starts with the power of family. “Family comes before anything,” says Gladys Rivera, a program coordinator at Providence Hood River Memorial Hospital. Rivera, who grew up in the Hood River Valley, recalls weekends with family and friends. A call would go out: posole is the main course. And everyone else would arrive with the rest of the feast. Leticia Valle, a Gorge native and a manager of health promotion services at The Next Door, remembers Sundays centered on family. Her family would arrive at St. Mary’s Catholic Church at 8 a.m., and then it was a family trip to Walmart, the grocery store, lunch at McDonald’s or Taco Bell, and then home to watch soccer on TV. The visits to McDonald’s scratched Valle’s itch to be part of the larger community. “I couldn’t go to school and say, ‘I helped my Mom kill a chicken this morning.’ The other kids would just think that was gross.” Work is revered nearly as much as family. “My parents were always working,” recalls Castro. “Work, home, work, home,” says Rivera of the monotonous life of her working parents, aunts and uncles. “They would never say ‘no’ to money. My family is so hard working. They all had two

Juan Reyes and his daughter

Humberto Calderon

jobs. That’s just what you did. I noticed that the white parents I knew were more selective of the jobs they would take. But we took anything.” Sitting around the lunch table at Duckwall Pooley, Alejandro Aguilera introduces his friends Epi and Ignacio, both of whom have lived in Hood River for more than 40 years. Epi repeats Rivera’s mantra, saying his life is “home to work to home to work.” The three have their lunches spread out before them: Epi has a bean torte, Ignacio a burrito, and Alejandro, the youngest of the three, a burrito with a Hood River twist: lots of fresh spinach. They are talking about how food helps them feel close to Mexico. And the best cook they know? The men look sheepishly at each other: “Mom,” they say. Epi says he enjoys Chinese and American food, but “it’s hard to forget our food.” Attend one of the three big St. Mary’s festivals, or a bull riding rodeo, or a Quinceañera, and you will find the food of Mexico is inextricably linked to music and culture and family. Valle describes the scene at the summer bull riding events in Tygh Valley: “Live bands, dancing horses, tacos, beer, fruit. There’s 500 to 1,000 people dancing in the dirt, or sitting in the bleachers.”


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Gladys Rivera, above, studies for nursing school at home while her sister and kids eat lunch. Leticia Valle, below, on a hike with Latin Xplorers. Ramon Martinez, opposite, at work at Westcliff Lodge, where he has handled maintenance for 25 years. Opening page, Yesenia Castro leads a group of Latin Xplorers on an early spring hike at the Syncline.

The Quinceañera, a coming of age celebration for Latino girls turning 15, is a blend of food, faith and celebration. The day begins with a ceremony at St. Mary’s, followed by dinner and dancing, paid for by a girl’s padrinos, or godparents. During the season, May to September, there’s at least one Quinceañera each weekend, often at the National Guard Readiness Center in The Dalles, the Hood River Armory or the fairgrounds in Odell. Rivera says it’s something every Latina girl here dreams of. “It is either that, or a car,” she says. She took the Quinceañera. The food, the music, the festivals: “I feel like I’m in Mexico,” says Ramon Martinez, who came from Colima, Mexico, in 1984 to pick fruit and stayed because Hood River reminded him of home, “without the mangoes, avocado or coconut.” He’s been handling maintenance at Westcliff Lodge for 25 years. He counsels new arrivals from his country to “fit in.” First thing, he says, “Learn the language. Instead of watching a novela on TV, read a book, go to the gym, follow the rules. Some folks learned the hard way. You drink and drive, you get deported.” Martinez is the first to admit that even though he “fits in” now, with 25 years in the same job and a hip soul patch on his lower lip, he’s had to prove himself. “Eight years ago, we bought a house, and I could tell the neighbors were worried. They think we’re dirty, we’re loud. But we improved the house, helped people out with little things, and now they accept us. And we play our music. Every house has to have music. We are a very happy people. I even leave the music on for the puppies.” For many, fitting in is a complicated task. “As a girl, we didn’t have play dates at Anglo girls’ houses,” says Valle. “We came straight home from school. Our parents thought the Anglo community was too promiscuous, and my parents wanted to protect me.” There was also a desire to preserve the old ways, says Rivera, a practice that was reinforced with frequent visits back home to Mexico. But now the borders are far less porous, meaning many American-born Latinos have never seen the culture unfiltered in Mexico. “There is a phrase we say: Not from here, not from there,” says Castro. “I’m fortunate that I got to go to Mexico every winter for two to three months, but I was the gringa there. And here, a lot of the white kids had opportunities I didn’t have. Where’s my place?” Reyes says he often feels like he doesn’t fit in anywhere. So he’s collected a group of friends like himself. “We find our niche, the people like us who are stuck in the middle. You feel lost in a way.” A cadre of young professionals, those not from here, not from there, including Reyes, Rivera, Aguilera, Castro and Valle, are putting down a stake in that middle ground, a place where they can revere their Mexican heritage, but layer on American college educations, healthier ways of eating, and a more liberal definition of a woman’s role at home and work. Ask around the Latino community, and their names come up often as leaders, people who volunteer to teach classes and host radio shows on Radio Tierra.


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Photo by Amanda Crosby

If there is one universal touchstone for the Latino community, it is Radio Tierra, a fast and loose collection of locally hosted radio shows that entertain, educate and cajole. Take Valle’s show. Every Tuesday from 10 to noon she talks about current services and resources, many at The Next Door. She interviews community leaders, takes phone calls and song requests, and in the second hour, she plays old radio novelas from the 1950s, interspersed with advice about healthy eating and TV watching. Pickers out in the orchards often carry radios and tune in. Most of these young leaders and radio station stars are members of a Next Door-sponsored effort, Latinos in Action. Castro, who staffs the group, explains, “If we want to make changes, we need to be in positions of power. We want to be on local boards and be part of the decision making process.” They study leadership skills, even practicing Roberts Rules of Order. The young leaders participate in an OSU program, Juntos (Together), that helps Latino kids and their families reach for college for the first time. Or they go out on hikes with Latin Xplorers, another Next Door program, staffed by Valle, that gets Latinos out into the wild Gorge, not common in a culture so focused on home, work, home, work. But still, the divide exists, with those in the middle reaching out both ways. Some notable Anglo leaders are reaching out too. Hood River mayor Paul Blackburn started a Latino Advisory

Take time to do what makes your soul happy, and look great doing it. 16 Oak Street #201 • Hood River 541-386-6555 THE GORGE MAGAZINE : SPRING 2017 53

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Juan Reyes and his daughters, above, at the Radio Tierra studio at The Next Door, Inc., where Reyes hosts a radio show. Humberto Calderon, below, in his clothing and accessories store, Novedades El Potrillo, in the Hood River Heights.

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Council, and Sheriff Matt English goes on Radio Tierra. “He started on the show two years ago,” says Castro. “People went from being afraid of him to saying, ‘Hey, that’s Matt!’ He’s a celebrity now. People know they can trust him.” And that, it seems, is the way to get to know our Latino neighbors. You just have to step out, start someplace. Rivera says just turn and talk to a Mexican in line at the grocery store. Ask how to prepare something you see in her cart. Just show up at the rodeo, or walk into a Quinceañera. No one sends invitations to those anyway, she says; everyone just hears about them at St. Mary’s or The Next Door or Radio Tierra and shows up. “They’ll make room for you,” she says. Our Anglo way says, “Don’t visit someone unless you’re invited.” But the Latino way says, “Just show up. And someone will feed you.” Drop by the Mercado de Valle, the farmer’s market in Odell, says Reyes, or go to the Zumba classes there. Valle advises you meet your kids’ Latino friends from school, then meet their parents. “Hang out for an hour or two. Go to a Juntos event. They won’t forget you. Once they know you are a safe person, you’ll be invited over.” But relationships, says Castro, take time. “There always has to be a foundation of trust, and you need to build that trust, work at that. Especially now, after the election.” Umberto Calderon is worried about his people since the election too. The owner of Novedades el Potrillo stands at the counter amidst the comforters, boots, cowboy hats, CDs and a statue of the Virgin Guadalupe. He’s been selling these essentials for 20 years—10 years out of a van out in the orchards, and 10 years here in his shop. This particular morning he is fresh in from the Radio Tierra show he DJs three mornings a week from 7 to 9. It’s a morning wake-up show, full of silly jokes, music, and serious talk too: politics, domestic violence, health. He says his people are slipping back into the shadows now. “They are afraid, very afraid,” Calderon says. Aguilera feels that fear all around him. Rivera says they all know who is legal and who is not, everyone knows. And they all worry for those friends and family. Aguilera’s lunch break is over and he’s going back to work at Duckwall, but he stops to deliver a message. “More of you are concerned about us now,” he says, “and that makes me very happy.” Kathy Watson is a Hood River chef and writer and is currently working on a memoir, No Bun for Corky: My Life as a Small Town Chef.


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Saving Tilly Jane

Inside a grassroots effort to restore a treasure of the Mount Hood backcountry STORY DAVID HANSON • PHOTOS BY CHRIS EMERICK


or April Donovan, the dream began with a party.

“I saw a photo from the 1940s of 200 people crammed into an outdoor amphitheater with live music, beside a cabin way up Mount Hood,” says Donovan, of Hood River. “I started planning overnight parties there for my friends and I got really into the idea of restoring the cabin as a community place for backcountry fun.” She’s talking about the Tilly Jane A-Frame, a one-room, two-floored hut built in 1939 by a crew of Civilian Conservation Corps youth. Donovan has become part of a small group of Portland and Gorge outdoors people trying to raise funds to preserve the historic cabin.


Getting to the hut in winter means hiking or skiing three miles and 2,000 feet up from the Cooper Spur ski hill. The trail weaves through thick forests before emerging into a stark blackand-white landscape of snowy hills and bare tree trunks charred from the 2011 Dollar Lake fire. Mount Hood’s summit looms over the pointed treetops, a dramatic reminder of the big mountain environment. Hidden under the snow, tracks of the original wagon road that accessed the area in the late 1800s crisscross the current trail (Tilly Jane was the wife of William Ladd whose stage company built the road). This was where the cool kids hung out on Mount Hood. The Cloud Cap Inn was built in 1889 and the Tilly Jane Campground and Guard Station in 1927. Were it not for the Great Depression, a town like Government Camp might be situated below Hood’s northeast tree line today. Instead, by the time the economy recovered, developers were planting flags on the south side of the mountain, leaving Tilly Jane to hearty mountaineers, music lovers, families, partyers, scout groups, and cooking clubs.


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Now, 78 years later, 1,400 acres encompassing the historic cabins has been designated as a National Forest Historic District. Cloud Cap’s been taken over and restored by the Crag Rats, but the cedar-shingled Tilly Jane A-frame, with its twelveinch wood plank floors, broad picnic tables, wood burning stove and a patina rich in smoke and memories, is on the verge of condemnation. “The roof might have a few more years left,” says Mike Dryden, East Zone archaeologist for the Mount Hood National Forest and the man assigned to oversee restoration. The Forest Service still owns the cabin, which is good and bad. Good because it has a mandate to preserve historic structures (rather than sell to the highest bidder). Bad because the historic designation places costly requirements on restoration and the Forest Service does not have the necessary money. “We have to retain as much of the historic fabric as we can using similar or identical materials,” says Dryden. “It’s expensive—the roof ’s cedar shingles are three feet long. It’s very difficult to find those types of cedars.” If they have to buy shingles on the market, the roof remodel alone could cost $88,000. The total remodel and salvation of the cabin will cost $213,000. The Forest Service has earmarked a grant to the tune of $10,000. If the Tilly Jane cabin can be saved it will not be from government angels. It will be because of a few old-school skiers from Portland and the Gorge. Andre Fortin, a Portland native, learned to ski at Timberline. He competed for his high school

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Charlie Cannon of Mosier, opposite top, skins up through a burnt forest en route to the Tilly Jane hut. Andre and Jennifer Fortin, opposite inset, manage the hut and are helping spearhead renovation of the structure, which dates to 1939. David and Michael Hanson of Hood River, above, take a break on the way up Cooper Spur, a popular hike and ski destination above the Tilly Jane hut.


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Tilly Jane’s dark interior warms up at night with gas lanterns, a wood burning stove and the conversation of overnighters, above left. Volunteers stock the cabin with firewood each October. Above right, overnighters at the hut used headlamps and a long exposure to “paint” a nighttime tribute to the beloved backcountry cabin that’s been a popular destination on Mount Hood for nearly 80 years.

team, then graduated into the backcountry as a telemark skier once he realized there were giant swaths of pristine mountain to explore without paying for a lift ticket. Andre turns 50 this year and he and his wife, Jennifer, still “earn their turns” in Mount Hood’s backcountry all winter. For much of the ‘80s, 90’s and ‘00s, the Tilly Jane cabin was managed under a handshake agreement between the Oregon Nordic Club Gorge Chapter and the Forest Service. There was no lock, no group limit, and minimal upkeep. For 20 years Rich Kadney managed it, alone. An annual October


work party stocked wood for the winter and collected donations, usually about half the cost of the wood. The rest came out of Kadney’s pocket. Throughout the years of joyous mountain celebrations, the spirit of the Tilly Jane hut was loved, but its structural integrity was not. The Fortins were volunteers at the annual wood stocking party and they used the hut for winter adventures, eventually helping Kadney with his duties until he passed away. “The cabin was being loved to death,” Fortin says. “That’s what it is. It’s a party cabin. It allows access to backcountry 1,000 feet below tree line.”


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Fortin, as a member of the Oregon Nordic Club Portland Chapter, took over management of the hut in 2011. Like Kadney, Andre and Jennifer are the heart and soul of the Tilly Jane cabin, bringing much needed changes. Now the hut must be reserved with a 20-person max and a $15 per person fee. All rental fees go toward the restoration fund. His volunteer wood stocking crew has grown from five or six in the early years to 60 to 70 people. Last year the Fortins, Donovan, local volunteers and a team from Hood River-based Wells Construction completed Phase I of the restoration by returning into place eight of the 14 boulders and rafters that originally supported the A-frame. Now the big push is to raise the final $100,000 for Phase II, replacing some log walls, parts of the foundation, and the roof. Donovan and her Hood River-based Blue Collar Agency have donated time and marketing expertise toward fundraising. A spring event in Portland is aimed at continuing the momentum with individual donors and corporate sponsorship. Dryden is hopeful that there are a couple of big cedars lying under the snow near Lost Lake. If salvageable, they could provide the roof shingles for the Tilly Jane hut and the Guard Station at a big savings. So if things fall in place, 2018 could be the year the Tilly Jane A-frame gets a new lease on life. In the meantime, the Fortins, Donovan and others keep an eye on the Forest Service and plans for a land swap that, if approved, would protect 770 acres of forests adjacent to the Cloud Cap-Tilly Jane Historic District from development by Mt. Hood Meadows Corporation. To learn more or donate to the Save the Tilly Jane Fund, go to

David Hanson is a writer, photographer and video producer based in Hood River. Find his editorial and commercial work at and weddings at

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Behind the Scenes Gorge artists welcome visitors in annual Open Studio Tour



he 11th annual Gorge Artists Open Studio Tour features 40 artists from around the Gorge, who invite visitors into their workspaces April 28, 29 and 30 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. This year’s tour features six artists joining the tour for the first time. The tour has grown since its start as a fledgling event featuring a handful of artists into one of the premier studio tours in the region. Artists on the tour work in a wide variety of mediums—including painting, drawing, jewelry, glass, sculpture, photography, textiles, fiber and more. Artists’ studios are located throughout the Mid-Columbia from Cascade Locks to The Dalles and from Parkdale to Trout Lake.

“As the years go by, the tour grows increasingly fun and special because it has become a lasting beacon of community, creativity, education and inspiration in the Gorge,” said Joanna Kaufman, an artist and board member of Gorge Artists Inc., the nonprofit organization that oversees the tour. “We hope to see lots of familiar faces and new ones, too, on the tour this year.” The tour is free and self-guided. For more information, including a map, go to 60


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New Name. New Look.


Work by Gorge artists, clockwise from opposite top, Sally Bills Bailey, Leah Hedberg, Cathy Stever, Rachel Harvey and James Diem.

ABIGAIL MERICKEL, Hood River: Printmaking • AIMÉE BREWER, Hood River: Ceramics • ANN FLEMING, White Salmon: Bronze and Clay Sculpture • BILL STURMAN, Mt. Hood-Parkdale: Watercolor Painting BRAD LORANG, Cascade Locks: Metal • BRIAN CHAMBERS, Hood River: Photography • CATHY STEVER, Hood River: Glass/Watercolor/Oil/Acrylic • CHARLENE FORT, Hood River: Glass • CHARLENE RIVERS, Mt. Hood-Parkdale: Acrylic and Mixed Media on Canvas •



CHARLOTTE VANZANT-KING, The Dalles: Prints, Ceramic Murals • CHRISTINE KNOWLES, Hood River: Pastel • CYNTHIA RIDDLE, Hood River: Pastel, Watercolor, Oil DENNIS HARTLEY, Trout Lake: Acrylic/Oil on Canvas • DONNA SILVERBERG, Mt. Hood-Parkdale: Fused Glass • instagram: Baldwincreekglass


ELIZABETH SEE, Hood River: Oil Paint • HEATHER MARLOW, White Salmon: Pastels and Jewelry • 509-412-2245 JAMES DIEM, Hood River: Ceramics • JAN BYRKIT, Mosier: Fiber • JOANNA KAUFMAN, Trout Lake: Watercolor Paintings and Illustrations • JOY KLOMAN, Hood River: Painting • KAREN WATSON, Hood River: Pastel • KATHY WATNE, Hood River: Enamel/Copper/Sterling Jewelry • KENTON AND LIZA JONES, Hood River: Wood • KRISTI HECK, Hood River; Acrylic, Fabric Design • LEAH HEDBERG, Hood River: Photography •


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LESLEY SAUNDERS, Mosier: Original Painted and Canvas Bags/Purses • LINDA REICHENBACH, Mt. Hood-Parkdale: Art Quilts LYNN LEWIS, Hood River: Water-based Dye on Cotton • MARK NILSSON, Hood River: Acrylic Painting • MELANIE THOMPSON, Hood River: Ceramics • PENY WALLACE, Mosier: Lifecasting and Pottery • RACHEL HARVEY, Mt. Hood-Parkdale: Oil Paintings • ROD STUART, Hood River: Wood Sculpture, Paper Collage, Oil Stick Drawing RON SHELDON, Goldendale: Painting on Copper • SALLY BILLS BAILEY, Mt. Hood-Parkdale: Watercolor/Acrylic • SALLY GILCHRIST, White Salmon: Printmaking • SARAH MORTON ERASMUS, White Salmon: Metalsmithing and Jewelry •

Artists on the Open Studio Tour work in a variety of mediums, including jewelry (Sarah Morton Erasmus) and textiles (Lynn Lewis).

STEPHANIE JOHNSTON, Hood River: Glass and Polymer Clay • SUZANNE KROL BOLLER, The Dalles: Oils/Carbon Pencil/Watercolor/Inks YVONNE PEPIN-WAKEFIELD, The Dalles: Multi-Media Paintings/Pit-fired Ceramics/Author Publications •



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11th Annual



OPEN STUDIOS Year-round guide to ART in the GORGE

Visit the studios of local artists: April 28, 29, 30 2017 10am-5pm

Karen Watson Pastel Paintings

Cathy stever Fused Glass

Brad LoranG Metal Wall art

saLLy BiLLs BaiLy nWs Watercolor

donna siLverBerG & Karen FairChiLd Fused Glass/ Baldwin Creek Glass 4585 Baldwin Creek Dr • Parkdale

CharLene rivers acrylic Paintings

Christine KnoWLes Pastel

heather MarLoW Pastels & Jewelry

raCheL harvey oil Paintings

JaMes dieM Porcelain

CharLene Fort Blown Glass (541) 490-3899

aBiGaiL MeriCKeL Printmaking

Visit or Find tour books for this free event online and at area Chambers of Commerce, Columbia Center for the Arts in Hood River and The Dalles Art Center.

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Get Well Here

Treating patients and athletes holistically at Columbia Gorge Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine STORY BY JANET COOK • PHOTOS BY SILVIA FLORES


t’s true that Bettina Bardin-Sorensen is a physical therapist. She’s been practicing in Hood River for 22 years, and co-founded Columbia Gorge Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine in 1997. But if you end up at her clinic for, say, a knee injury, you’re likely to get a whole lot more than just a regimen of leg strengthening exercises. “My vision for the clinic has always been to be a wellness studio,” Bardin-Sorensen said. “For us, the way we like to look at treating patients is to take a whole-body and lifestyle approach. We’ve discovered that when someone comes in with an injury, it’s not as effective to just treat that body part. If we do, we’re missing an opportunity to educate a patient on how to live a healthier life and be more active.” It’s a mantra Bardin-Sorensen lives as well as preaches. A lifelong athlete and one-time bike racer, she began studying kinesiology and exercise physiology in college at the University of Colorado. “I wanted to understand exercise science, movement, the body,” she said. To learn more she


volunteered at physical therapy clinics, where she found her calling. She earned her master’s degree in physical therapy at Pacific University before moving to Hood River. After two years of practicing at another clinic, she and a business partner launched Columbia Gorge Physical Therapy. Bardin-Sorensen became sole owner of the clinic five years ago, and she’s worked since then to fulfill her vision of a wellness studio by building a team of dedicated physical therapists and other diverse practitioners. Working alongside her are four physical therapists, one physical therapy aide, and one massage therapist. Naturopathic physician and acupuncturist Melissa Shays works from the clinic, and certified Pilates instructor Virginia Thomas operates The Pilates Studio of Hood River in space attached to the clinic. Shays and Thomas operate independently, but frequently “share” patients with the clinic.


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“We incorporate Pilates exercises and concepts into our treatments and have had great success with that,” said Bardin-Sorensen, adding that, when appropriate, patients work with Thomas during injury rehab or are transitioned to a Pilates program for ongoing core strength and balance work. “We communicate with each other so that a Pilates session and a rehab session complement each other,” Bardin-Sorensen said. Similarly, physical therapy patients will sometimes do complementary treatments with Shays. “With all these different practitioners, we can consult with each other and come up with a very comprehensive plan to get people back on track,” Bardin-Sorensen said. Some of the clinic’s physical therapists also have additional training, ranging from yoga certifications to specialty women’s health treatments including pre- and post-natal care. All of the clinic’s physical therapists have most recently been working toward certification in applied functional science through the Gray’s Institute—a discipline that combines biological, physical and behavioral sciences to look at optimal movement patterns. “It’s a movement science that we think is extremely effective,” said Bardin-Sorensen, who


Physical therapist Bettina Bardin-Sorensen, opposite top and inset, works with patients and athletes using a variety of methods, including Kaatsu. Physical therapist Kristen Dills, above and opposite bottom, works with patients in The Pilates Studio, which is attached to Columbia Gorge Physical Therapy. Pilates is incorporated into many patients’ treatment plans.

encouraged her whole team to get certified so they could be more effective and efficient when sharing patients. “We’re required to do a certain amount of continuing education every year, but we all go above and beyond what’s required.” Pursuing extra certifications is par for the course for Bardin-Sorensen, who admits she’s “obsessed with continuing education.” She became a licensed massage therapist in 1991 and is Stott Pilates trained. She’s also certified in the Graston Technique, a form of instrument-assisted soft tissue mobilization, and earned a certification from the Titleist Performance Institute to work with golfers on conditioning and swing mechanics (she teams with Mark Gradin, golf pro at Indian Creek Golf Course, to offer a specialized golf performance program). She’s also been researching and attending seminars on cannabis for pain management. “I’m not prescribing it, but if a patient wants to ask about it, I need to understand it,” she said.

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Bardin-Sorensen does Kaatsu with Tre Hendricks, above left, to help rehab from knee surgery (photo by Darcy Hunter); and with her son, Torsenn Brown, right, for conditioning. Below, Pilates instructor Virginia Thomas, who owns The Pilates Studio of Hood River, works with a client. Thomas and Bardin-Sorensen often “share” patients at the clinic, creating complementary treatment and rehab plans. 541-386-1006 call today for appointment

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The latest addition to her repertoire is Kaatsu, a Japanese exercise method that involves blood flow modification. Developed in Japan 50 years ago, Kaatsu is only recently emerging in the U.S. as a low-impact strengthening exercise program for injury rehab, as well as for enhancing performance. Bardin-Sorensen is one of only a handful of practitioners in Oregon who is a certified Kaatsu specialist. She’s begun offering it to select patients and athletes in training over the last few months. One of them is Tre Hendricks, a competitive bike racer from Hood River who underwent two major knee surgeries this past fall and winter. Hendricks had never heard of Kaatsu before Bardin-Sorensen suggested it, but he credits it with helping to reduce swelling and regain muscle mass quickly after surgery. “I was pleasantly surprised,” he said of the innovative treatment. Bardin-Sorensen plans eventually to offer Kaatsu conditioning classes at the clinic that will be open to the public. Along with all the specialties and progressive treatments available at her clinic, Bardin-Sorensen believes strongly in helping to educate patients about simple ways to improve their health—getting quality sleep, managing stress, breathing correctly, drinking plenty of water and getting good nutrition. “If you’re failing in those areas, you’re not going to recover well,” she said. Patients at the clinic get a full hour for appointments, which helps the practitioners address “global” issues as well as the specific issue that brought them to the clinic in the first place. “It might not be the most profitable,” Bardin-Sorensen said, “but if a patient is willing to be here for an hour, we’re going to get a lot done.” That’s what drives Bardin-Sorensen and her staff—whom she credits with making the clinic what it is. “We take every opportunity to educate patients on looking at the whole picture,” she said. “That’s what I love about this team. We’re not doing just one joint at a time. Everyone who walks through the door, we feel like we really could have an impact on multiple areas of their life.” For more information, go to

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Our doctors strive to optimize each patient’s health and well-being utilizing years of first-hand knowledge, extensive training, and the most effective treatments currently available.

541-386-1700 // // find us on Facebook 1700 12th Street, Suite A // Hood River, Oregon

HEALTH care so CLOSE and PERSONAL, it’s like you haven’t left HOME.

S K Y L INE HOSPI TAL Inpatient Care • Transitional Care Surgical Services • Digital Radiology Physical Therapy • Full-Service Laboratory 24/7 Emergency Services

S PECIALT Y CLI NI CS W H I T E S A L M O N , WA S H. Serving the entire Columbia Gorge area

General Surgery • Orthopedics Cardiology • Neurology • Podiatry Pain Management (509) 493-1101 •


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• 3 cups cooked quinoa
 • 1 large red beet, trimmed, peeled and cut into matchsticks by hand or with a mandolin
 • kernels cut from two corn cobs • 
1/2 cup flat leaf Italian parsley, roughly chopped
 • 6 oz. crumbled feta
 1/4 cup champagne vinegar • 1/2 tablespoon Dijon mustard
 • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
 • kosher salt
 • freshly ground black pepper
 • flake salt

Pair with…

Marchesi Emma Sangiovese 2014 Springhouse Sauvignon Blanc 2015 Syncline Gruner Veltliner 2015


This quick Quinoa Salad has been a staple in my house. I often eat it for lunch on its own, and serve it with soft-boiled eggs or chicken sausages for dinner the same evening. The rest of the recipe is just about adding in texture and flavor; bright parsley, crunchy beet, salty feta, and sweet corn are just some of the things you could toss in. Toasted, chopped walnuts would add richness; halved, tart cherry tomatoes would add acidity; goat cheese would add creaminess; basil would add a peppery bite; diced shallots would add a little spice. You could go a dozen directions with this simple salad. My go-to vinaigrette will complement whatever you toss in. The champagne vinegar base can be pretty aggressive so feel free to add more olive oil than I do to mellow it a bit. This salad is great day of, as leftovers, and also travels well! It’s a great picnic food. Directions: To cook the quinoa, I follow the recipe for Perfectly Cooked Quinoa from the cookbook It’s All Good. 1 cup quinoa, 1 3/4 cup water and coarse salt Rinse the quinoa thoroughly. Place it in a pot on high heat with the water and a big pinch of salt. Bring the quinoa to a boil, lower the heat, cover the pot and cook until the liquid is absorbed and the quinoa’s germs look like lots of tiny little spirals. This should be between 12 and 15 minutes. Turn the heat off, place a try paper towel between the pot and the lid and let the quinoa sit for 5 minutes before fluffing it with a fork. A quick personal note: when you “lower the heat” to cook the quinoa, keep it at a nice low simmer. For my stove that means keeping the burner at about medium-low. Once the quinoa is finished, I pour it out onto a baking sheet and allow it to cool either on the kitchen counter, or in the fridge if I’m in a hurry. In a small bowl, whisk together the mustard and vinegar, pour in the olive oil while whisking continuously. Season to taste with kosher salt and pepper. Place the cooked quinoa to a large bowl; add in the beets, corn, parsley, and feta. Toss gently together. Drizzle the salad with the dressing and toss together again. Top the salad with a bit of fresh pepper and flake salt. If you want to serve the salad with soft-boiled eggs, I prefer 6-minute eggs. To make them I cover eggs with cold water in a saucepan. Then bring the water to a quick simmer, turn the heat off, cover the pot and let the eggs cook for 6 minutes before transferring them to a bowl of ice water. Once cool, carefully peel, slice in half and set on top of the served salad.


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Kacie McMackin is a food blogger, writer and photographer at She lives in Hood River and is a frequent contributor to The Gorge Magazine.


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541-386-1448 • 107 Oak Street • Hood River

541-352-3554 • 4956 Baseline Drive • Downtown Parkdale



Pizzeria • drafthouse theater • arcade • frozen yogurt It’s the pizza -25 years of authentic east coast thin crust pizza

• Our meats are smoked using local cherry wood • Dry rub and BBQ sauces are all made in-house • Pulled pork, chicken, ribs, burgers, salads, vegetarian items • Nightly dinner specials • Local draft beer, wine, hard cider • All desserts fresh-made by Apple Valley Country Store • Outdoor seating available • Ask about catering

Backwoods Brewing is family owned and located in Carson, WA. Established in 2012, we offer delicious beers, hand-made pizzas, outdoor seating, and welcome all ages.


On-line ordering • Eat in • Take out • Delivery

Open: Wed-Sun at 11am to 8pm. Closed: Mon & Tues.



509-427-3412 • 1162 Wind River Hwy • Carson

Open daily: 11:30am-9pm


541-374-8477 • Exit 44 off I-84, Cascade Locks

541-436-3444 • 102 Oak St. Suite 100 • Hood River

541-298-7388 • 1424 West 2nd Street • The Dalles

Stunning views next to the Bridge of the Gods – Bridgeside (formerly Charburger) still serves tasty char-broiled burgers plus an extensive menu of breakfast items, chowders, fish & chips, fresh salad bar, sandwiches, and desserts. New name, new management, but historic charm and western artifacts remain. Serving breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Offering Nordic inspired breakfast and lunch to the gorge. Something new and exciting for the whole family to enjoy. Come try traditional recipes such as aebleskiver (danish pancakes), swedish meatballs, norwegian lefse (potato crepes) and lots more!

Gift shop • Special event room & terrace


Quality Mexican food prepared with the freshest and finest ingredients. Warm, friendly service and a lively atmosphere. Indulge in generous portions of flavorful sizzling fajitas, fish tacos, savory enchilada dishes and daily specials. Happy Hour margaritas, drink specials and new Happy Hour menu from 4-7pm, Mon-Fri. Full service bar, take-out menu, gift certificates and catering services. Open for lunch and dinner 7 days a week.

We look forward to serving you!



CROOKED TREE TAVERN & GRILL 541-352-6692 • 10755 Cooper Spur Road • Mt Hood/Parkdale

541-386-4502 • 411 Oak Street • Downtown Hood River

Celilo began with a desire to honor the bounty of this region and a commitment to a healthy and sustainable future. Our ever-changing menu reflects the seasonal highlights of the region’s growers and foragers. We offer the most innovative in fresh, local cuisine as well as an award-winning wine list, full bar, small plate menu, and happy hour daily from 5-6pm.

Home cooking takes on a broader significance at the Crooked Tree Tavern & Grill. Draw a 30-mile circle around our cozy community bar and restaurant, and chances are your meal is sourced from a combination of the outstanding local farms, ranches, wineries and breweries that are part of the Hood River Valley’s culinary renaissance.

Named one of ‘America’s top 10 coffeehouses’ by USA Today

541-386-5710 • 16 Oak Street • Downtown Hood River

Full service espresso bar featuring Stumptown coffee Breakfast burritos, pastries and more Caffeinating your adventures since 2004 Open: Mon-Fri, 6am-6pm & Sat-Sun, 7am-6pm

Dinner daily from 5pm • Lunch Fri-Sun 11:30-3pm



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EAT + DRINK White Salmon, WA




541-386-3000 • 310 Oak Street • Downtown Hood River

509-637-2774 • 151 Jewett Boulevard • Downtown White Salmon

541-386-2247 • 506 Columbia Street • Downtown Hood River

Relax on our patio, right in the heart of downtown…enjoy a hand-crafted espresso drink made with locally roasted, fair trade and organic coffee. Serving breakfast and lunch all day: panini, salads, smoothies, and fresh baked goods (vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free options). Local beers on tap, and local wines by the glass or bottle. Free Wi-fi and our patio is dog-friendly. Open daily at 7 am.

See for yourself why Everybody’s Brewing is a local favorite! We brew 12 different styles of beer plus seasonal selections onsite. The menu is filled with affordable food choices made with high-quality local ingredients. The atmosphere is warm and family-friendly. Enjoy the stunning Mt. Hood view from the outdoor deck, listen to free live music on Friday nights.

If there is one thing a brewer loves more than great beer– it’s great food and great beer! Our northwest-inspired menu complements our award-winning brews and features seasonal, local ingredients. Swing by for a pint, grab a bite, tour the brewery or just soak up the view. Open daily at 11am serving lunch and dinner. Guided brewery tours are offered daily at 1, 2, 3 and 4pm and are free of charge.



541-386-4442 • 12 Oak Street • Downtown Hood River

Open Tues-Sun: 11:30am to closing

541-308-0304 • 3605 Brookside Drive • Hood River

Get your daily fuel for your Gorge sports and activities here! A long time locals favorite coffee house and eatery, Ground features fresh in-house roasted coffee, house made pastries and cookies with lots of gluten free options. We make our soups from scratch every day and source mostly local and organic ingredients. Feel like a having a brewski? Local beer and cider on tap.

Located in the heart of the Hood River Valley just minutes from downtown. Breathtaking views of Mt. Hood and Mt. Adams from our covered patio. Full service bar and fabulous northwest cuisine at a reasonable price. Your everyday vacation spot! Open to the public.



Open Daily for Lunch & Dinner. Happy Hour 3-6pm.

KICKSTAND COFFEE & KITCHEN 541-436-0016 • 1235 State Street • Hood River

KickStand uses seasonal, locally sourced ingredients and a blend of foreign and domestic cooking styles to create unique world flavors. In addition to our breakfast menu, we make our own donuts, fresh daily! House-roasted Ten Speed Coffee and a variety of pastries. Lunch and dinner menus offer healthy salads, burgers, sandwiches and a variety of entrees. Beer, wine & cocktails. Open daily 7am.


503-669-8610 • 2126 SW Halsey Street • Troutdale (off Exit 16)

541-321-0490 • 707 Portway Avenue, Suite 101 • Hood River Waterfront

541-716-4020 • 112 Third Street • Downtown Hood River

Our seasonal hard ciders offer a new twist on the hard cider we have been brewing since 1992. With its crisp, clean flavors, hard cider is a great pairing to the menu options found at the Black Rabbit Restaurant and Power Station Pub.

pFriem artisanal beers are symphonies of flavor and balance, influenced by the great brewers of Belgium, but unmistakably true to our homegrown roots in the Pacific Northwest. Although they are served humbly, each glass is overflowing with pride and a relentless aspiration to brew the best beer in the world. We’ll let you decide.

Recharge at Remedy Cafe’ with organic and satisfying breakfast or lunch bowls, burritos, curry, smoothies, juices, hot drinks or in-between meal treats. Vegan and paleo options, created from scratch from the best quality organic and local ingredients. Kombucha on tap. Locally roasted, organic espresso. Free WiFi. Open Mon-Sat 7am-5pm.

Open Daily: 11:30am-9pm

Dine-in or take out. Order ahead online or call us!

Ales, wines, ciders and spirits are crafted onsite.


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541-387-2583 • Find us on Facebook 207 Cascade Avenue • Downtown Hood River



541-296-7870 • 701 East 2nd Street • Downtown The Dalles (I-84, Exit 85)


River City Saloon, an iconic Hood River fixture, is back under new ownership. Our entire menu is served until midnight along with 16 taps, a full bar, and live music most nights. Enjoy a comfortable atmosphere with seven big-screen TVs, darts, pool, and ping pong. Open: Mon-Fri, 4pm-2:30am; Sat & Sun, noon-2:30am; family friendly every night until 9pm.

Showcasing delicious local foods, hand crafted beers, wines and spirits of the Columbia River Basin in a relaxed atmosphere. Friendly staff, family dining, and the best garden patio in The Dalles!

Diners seek out newly remodeled Riverside for some of the best food and views in the Gorge, and Cebu for great bar food and drinks. Fresh menus change seasonally—plus an award-winning wine list. Serving breakfast, lunch and dinner seven days a week.

Join us for $5 Happy Hour plates Monday-Friday


Enjoy Happy Hour daily, 3pm-6pm and Live Music every Friday, Saturday and Sunday!


541-386-4410 • Exit 64 off I-84 • Waterfront Hood River

Cebu Lounge Happy Hours: Mon-Fri 4-6pm


541-436-0800 • 501 Portway Avenue • Hood River Waterfront

541-386-3940 • 3405 West Cascade Avenue • Hood River

541-386-7423 • 109 First Street • Downtown Hood River

Inventive, thin-crust pizzas, seasonally inspired entrees, & sublime s’mores. Creative cocktails, craft beers, wine, & ciders on tap. Family dining & kids play area. Vegan & gluten-free options.

“The best outdoor dining in the Gorge.” –NW Best Places We are a favorite among locals and visitors. Our cuisine is a classic, European blend that utilizes fresh, local ingredients and pairs well with our select wines. Our gardens are the perfect setting for weddings. Full-service catering available. “Romantic setting and the best meal I had in town.” –The Los Angeles Times

Come find us in the basement of the Yasui Building, the local’s favorite spot for fresh fish, Pan-Asian Cuisine, and a rockin’ atmosphere! Lots of rotating specials, creative rolls, and a large sake selection means you’re always trying something new! Private rooms are available for groups up to 20 people. Take-out menu available online. Open for dinner nightly at 5:00, closing hours change seasonally.

Heated patio & waterfront views across from the park

A local resource guide for the discerning foodie. Reviews, recipes & more:



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Celebrating TAD’S CHICKEN ‘N DUMPLINS 503-666-5337 • 1325 East Historic Columbia River Hwy • Troutdale

We are nestled on the banks of the Sandy River in Troutdale, OR–the gateway to the Columbia River Gorge. We are located halfway between Portland and Multnomah Falls. Serving exquisite American cuisine since the 1930s. The menu includes: Seafood specialties as well as traditional steak, chicken, and pasta dishes; a full bar, and our famous home-style chicken ‘n dumplins. Open every night for dinner.

Look for our next issue, June 2017.


A publication by the Hood River News highlighting the growing array of producers and the flourishing “LOCAL FOOD FIRST” movement in the Gorge. For advertising information contact Hood River News, 541-386-1234, Or email: Story ideas can be submitted to:

TARWATER TAVERN 130 E Jewett Blvd • White Salmon

Longtime Portland bartender-owner, Chris Joseph (Berbati’s Pan, Blue Monk, Morrison Hotel) brings his love of booze and Red Sox to White Salmon.

gorge sipping guide wineries / breweries / distilleries / cideries

Stop in to try some of the finest handmade cocktails, beer, wine, cider, & kombucha, the Gorge has to offer. We have two outside seating areas. Visit our website.


a guide to GORGE breweries, wineries, cideries distilleries AND MORE!

Open 4pm-2am

This special booklet will be inserted into the 2017 Summer issue of The Gorge Magazine


Space reservations by March 15th Ad materials due by April 7th

509-427-5520 • 240 SW 1st Street • Stevenson

Nestled in Stevenson, WA just minutes from the Bridge of the Gods, Walking Man has become a destination for beer enthusiasts and gorge travelers. Experience the charm of a small community craft brewery. Enjoy our dog-friendly beer garden or cozy up with a pint and a bite in the brewpub. Please visit our website for seasonal hours.

For more information contact Micki Chapman: (541) 380-0971 or your advertising representative.

SUMMER 2017 reserve advertising space NOW


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Celilo Falls, circa 1910. (Photo from the Collection of the History Museum of Hood River County.)



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NMLS - 140302, MLO - 140302

NMLS - 114305, MLO - 114305

NMLS - 339123

Sr. Mortgage Specialist

Sr. Mortgage Specialist

Sr. Mortgage Specialist

102 3RD STREET | HOOD RIVER, OR 97031 Looking to Purchase or Refinance?



This is not a commitment to lend. Information deemed reliable but subject to change without notice. Subject to credit approval. Restrictions may apply. Call for Details. Consumer Loan License NMLS-3240, CL-3240.

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3608 Airport Drive, Hood River, OR 97031 | 844.FLY.CUBS |

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The Gorge Magazine - Spring 2017  

Enjoy this issue full of captivating stories and beautiful photography. Happy reading!

The Gorge Magazine - Spring 2017  

Enjoy this issue full of captivating stories and beautiful photography. Happy reading!