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July 25, 2011

On the road again…

by DePaolo Equine Concepts

We are still making our way from Oregon to Texas.  Slow and steady, right?

DAY 1 – THE GORGE

The first night after packing up we made it to Hood River, Oregon.  We stayed at the Columbia Gorge Hotel where we got married almost 4 years ago!

The city of Hood River is famous for its wind thus bringing world class windsurfing and kite surfing to the area.  The area is also home to numerous apple and pear orchards, as well as many wineries.  As for the area where the Columbia Gorge Hotel now stands, it was originally developed in the early 1900’s by a Hood River pioneer, Bobby Rand.

These were the days of steamers navigating the waters of the Columbia River from the Cascades to The Dalles. To alert the hotel, the captains would sound the whistle once for each guest he had on board. Maids would then quickly make up the appropriate number of beds.  In 1920, Rand sold his interests in the hotel to Simon Benson. Benson had just helped complete what many of the era claimed to be the world’s most beautiful road, the Columbia Gorge Scenic Highway.  Benson’s dream was to create an opulent hotel for travelers at the end of this road. He hired some of the same Italian stone masons that had built the highway to embellish his hotel.  The hotel had barely opened before it had an international reputation. Presidents Roosevelt and Coolidge, actresses Myrna Loy, Jane Powell, and rumor has it, Rudolph Valentino are some of the notables to have graced the hotel.

During the depression, the Hotel fell on hard times and was purchased by the Neighbors of Woodcraft as a retirement home. Such it remained for a quarter of a century, until the ongoing restoration began in 1977. Now corporately owned and operated, The Columbia Gorge Hotel has been brilliantly restored to a new opulence. The Hotel stands proudly atop a bluff overlooking the mighty Columbia River greeting its visitors with warmth and elegance continuing to be an elegant oasis in the heart of the Columbia Gorge National Scenic Area.*

* Excerpts taken from A Taste for Comfort by Anita Stewart, 1993, C&D Publishing, Portland, Oregon


The second day of driving, well the first real day of driving, we finished off in the Twin Falls/Nampa, Idaho area. Dr. Mark was here about a month ago working at the Region 4 Arabian Championships.  Did you see the blog posts of all the winners he worked on?  If not, check out our amazing customers at Post 1 of results & Post 2 of results! Sorry…Not much else to say about Nampa 🙂


DAY 3 – MOAB, UTAH

By day three we made it to Moab, Utah and stayed a the beautiful Red Cliffs Lodge.  Nestled on the banks of the Colorado River, surrounded by magnificent 2000 feet high cliffs, the Red Cliffs Lodge is truly a hidden treasure of the West. Inside, the lodge features dramatic 20-foot ceilings, natural wood-paneled walls, rustic log furniture and hand-finished Mexican tile floors. Visiting the Lodge feels like a step back in time, but guests soon find comfort and amenities throughout.  They even have horseback riding tours and you can haul in your own horse, board overnight and explore the Utah National and State parks that are just minutes away.
Okay…Only about 1000 miles to go!  We’ll keep you posted.
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