In order to make it to Denver in 5 days and have enough time to stop at the one place Deke wanted to see, Dinosaur Monument National, we needed to get a start on Thursday night after Deke got home from work. Our goal was to make it past Portland and stay at one of the State Parks right along the Columbia River — Anisworth, Viento or Memaloose were the options because we get pretty burned out doing more than a 4 hour drive at a time. We pulled into Anisworth at about 9:30pm and it was full, so we moved on to Viento (about 20 more minutes) which was not full. After finding a spot and settling in, we quickly realized why it might be not-so-crowded. The train tracks were right behind the campground (I’m pretty sure Laura warned me about this). If I would’ve looked more closely at the brochure, I would’ve read this: Viento is next to a working railroad line and crossing. Visitors and campers can expect to hear train horns throughout the day and night.
At least we got a few hours of sleep! The park is nice — clean, big spots, lots of trees. It also wins the award for weirdest signage:
In the morning, after driving by Memaloose (about 25 miles east), I wish we would’ve gone there. It was right next to the river in a beautiful location. Maybe next time.
The drive east on I-84 was beautiful — there were just a few small towns along the way, nothing to write about, so we decided to take a break at the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center (which is right next to a Google Data Center and a mobile home park with million dollar views).
The parking lot is huge and there are a few small trails that allow you to walk the dog and get closer down to the river.
The only other eventful thing that happened was within 3 hours we saw 12 other Airstream on the road (not including a few in the park). I’ve never seen that many at a time on one drive!