Category Archives: Oregon

Posts that relate to travel in Oregon

Back in the Hood, Surrounded by Friends

Hood River, Oregon is in the Columbia River Gorge about an hour east of Portland.  I first came here in 2006 on an interview and shortly afterwards sold my house in Georgia, moved across the country and have never really looked back… and while I’m still full vagabond mode, it is still the place that I consider home to me.

Multnomah Falls
Multnomah Falls lower falls en route to Hood River from Portland, Oregon

So I’ve been back here in this special place a week now and each day I have been fortunate to be surrounded by people who have followed me virtually the last eight months of my adventures, have listened when I pour my heart out on Facebook messenger and now that I’m home they are here with me daily, both laughing and crying as I talk about the last eight months and my thoughts on life and as I sit and listen to get up to speed on theirs and everything that I have missed.

One of the biggest things that has changed this travel period is that my friend gave birth, and I’m now Auntie to the handsome Hiko-san.

Some days are full from Breakfast to lunch to dinner, and its these moments that I hold on to when I’m gone because truly the best gift we can give to each other is time.

It never hurts that we all live in a place I still consider one of the most beautiful in all the world and an outdoor mecca.

Hood River
Mt Hood over Hood River Airport

Which has allowed me accessibility to mark items off my bucketlist, like my climb of Mt St Helens….

mt st helens
Mt Helens Sunrise Summit

Enjoying mosquito free evenings outside drinking wine and talking about future life and future babies…

Adam and Vanessa

As well as a plethora of other adventurous activities like my day spent rafting the White Salmon River with Robin and Dani from our Kilimanjaro hike as well as more old friends :)

And of course, this week we also got to celebrate 4th of July together… which is my favorite holiday and a day that generally incites memories that I never want to forget.

How lucky we are to call this place home and how blessed I am to have these fabulous people here to enjoy it with.

//The I.A.

Touring The New Hood River Distillery – Camp 1805

“To run out of salt would be of grave consequence but to run out of whiskey before the point of no return would be unforgivable” –Meriwether Lewis

On the 4th of July 1805, the Lewis and Clark Expedition was camping in the Columbia River Gorge when they ran out of whiskey….

hood river distillery

209 years later, Chris Taylor and Roy Slayton have recently opened the Camp 1805 Distillery in Hood River, ensuring that no current adventurer in the Gorge will ever fall to the same ill fate of running out of whiskey….

hood river distillery
Whiskey Tastings At Camp 1805

Truth be told, I’m kind of a wuss these days and doing shots of straight whiskey are for probably best kept as memories of my harder partying days in my early 20s long-past, but Camp 1805 also offers a full bar complimented with freshly squeezed juices for mixing.  My friends said their favorite was Camp’s aged Rum, a rum with a lot of character and no back sweetening.

hood river distillery

I ordered up a Mosier Mule, Camp’s version of the Moscow Mule and “delightful” became the word of the day.  Mosier Mules consist of ginger beer, fresh lime and Camp’s Mt. Hood Vodka.

hood river distillery
Mosier Mule

While enjoying our cocktails, we were offered  to take a short tour of the distillery with Chris.  He explained the brewing process and showed us all the equipment from the mash ton to the 200 gallon copper still to the condenser.

Camp 1805 sources their golden sugar cane from Maui, Barley from Canada and they use French wheat and non-gmo corn.

It’s interesting to note that Rum is naturally gluten-free  as well as Vodka, because even if it is wheat-based, the gluten particle gets cut during the distilling process.

hood river distillery
Camp 1805 Mt Hood Vodka

When asked what the long-term plans were, Chris says the goal is to always keep it small batch… that way they can control the taste, control the cuts and therefore also control the hangover… as the amount of the cuts have an impact on the purity of the liquor.

hood river distillery
Drink menu

Camp 1805 also offers a small food menu of all locally sourced foods and feature Olympic Provision’s charcuterie.

hood river distillery

Although they’re here to have fun and are new to the small batch distilling scene, Camp 1805 has already won awards at both the San Diego International Spirits Competition as well as the Great American Distillers Festival.

hood river distillery

Who knew that camp 1805, a small batch Hood River distillery, would end up being a perfect addition to the Hood River waterfront as well as the 40+ wineries and plethora of microbreweries in the area offering stiff drinks perfect for any Gorge day.

hood river distillery
Wine before Whiskey!!!

CAMP 1805 is located on the Hood River waterfront, 501 Portway Ave. Suite 102, Hood River, OR 97031.

//The I.A.

A Classic Hood River Double Barrel Thanksgiving

I was pretty excited that my insane schedule worked out and I was able to spend Thanksgiving with my friend family in Hood River this year.  I feel like I miss practically every birthday, holiday and every other celebration… so it was pretty awesome that I got to do Thanksgiving, and not only once today, but twice today…. and both times it was surrounded by friends, delicious food, happiness and laughter.

Hood River Friend Fam

My first round was an early afternoon Thanksgiving hosted at my friends, Corinne and Bronson’s home.  Corinne is a beautiful glowing 8-months pregnant and she was still gracious enough to host for all of us… AND make the turkey which was really appreciated.  Bronson also got up at the wee hours of the morning to smoke a prime rib for us.  Meat meat meat, I love meat.  Food get in my mouth….

I had made a cake with essence of lemon, fresh mascarpone crème and summer berries macerated in sherry for dessert.  Not very Thanksgiving-ish but don’t judge me.  I had my reasons.


I also got a special phone call from Africa, from two of my friends who used to be part of the Hood River Clan, so it was awesome to be able to facetime with them.

Hello From Africa!

Once the evening football game started, I headed across town to Thanksgiving round two.  This was an evening soirée at my friends, Adam and Vanessa’s beautiful new home.

Adam and Vanessa

And look who else joined in the Thanksgiving round deuces merry-making festivities… Robin and Dani, who I did Kilimanjaro and most recently the Tran-Siberian Orchestra concert over the past weekend with.


We were also joined by Vanessa’s Dad, Brian who did the honors of carving a delicious chardonnay marinated turkey.  What did I just say? Turkey marinated in A LOT of wine?  That’s right.  I like your style Vanessa…

thanksgiving thanksgiving

As this was Robin, Dani and myself second go of Thanksgiving for the day, we tried to conquer all the great dishes with loads of flavor.  Can you say siracha string beans, shredded brussel hash with caramelized shallot,  cranberry salad, mashed potatoes, bread dressing, marinated beet salad, homemade cranberry sauce… and I had also marinated goat cheese Tuscan style and two pounds of Tiger shrimp all afternoon for Dani who is pescatarian.

Now here’s where the day gets ridiculous (aka ah-mazing).. after a lot of food and a lot of wine, most people want to veg out in food comas… but not us.

We played hours and hours of Cards Against Humanity… which is of course, “a card game for terrible people.”  Think Apples to Apples but lets just amp that to a rated R version.  I haven’t laughed this much in months, I highly recommend….but only if you too are a horrible person.

I bought Cards Against Humanity on Amazon…  $25 dollas will make you holla.

We practically played through the entire deck.   After my kidneys couldn’t take any more wine and hurt from all the laughing it was time to roll home.

Admittedly days like today make it hard to always be gone….but I am always more thank thankful for these people. <3