It’s been a very busy, past two weeks, with all the traveling and sight-seeing I’ve been doing. Things are back to normal now. The last few places visited involved both wide open spaces and also a bit of mountain scenery. I visited Pendleton, Oregon for the very first time, located on the Oregon Trail and home of the famous Pendleton Woolen Mill and the wildly popular Pendleton Roundup. It is real cowboy country, with rolling hills and wide open spaces that seem to go on forever. If one wanted to escape from it all, this would be one option, since it’s miles from anywhere in northeastern Oregon. It’s a pretty quiet, little town with many of its residents born and raised there. I will name some of the must-visit places to experience. For the best in fine dining, Hamley Steak House on SE Court Ave. is the epitome of Western style, through and through. It is absolutely gorgeous inside, a real throwback to the Old West. I didn’t want to bother the guests inside the restaurant with my camera flashes, so I only took a photo shot of the outside.
Nearby is the Hamley & Co. store filled to the brim with Western wear, saddles, and everything else you can think of that is Western style. Again, this is a gorgeous interior.
If you’re into antiques, there’s plenty treasures to find here. One of my favorites was the Western Working Girls Gift & Antique Shop, located on SW Emigrant Ave. Speaking of working girls, if you can, schedule a tour with the Pendleton Underground Tours. Unfortunately, I didn’t have enough time for the tour. Perhaps another time.
If you are a chocoholic, I found one of the very best chocolate shops I have ever been into, Alexander’s Chocolate Classics, located on S. Main St. Here you will find only the very best chocolates. I really mean it!
Within a few miles south of town is the Tamastslikt Cultural Institute Museum, a very fine museum of Native American cultural history. Nearby is the Wildhorse Resort & Casino. The food is excellent!
On the way back home to Western Washington, we stopped in Prosser, along I-82, to visit the Chukar Cherries Gift Shop for some of their wonderful chocolate covered cherries and cherry sauces. Plenty of yummy samples here!
Our return trip over the Cascade Mountains was via Hwy 12, White Pass. This is a very scenic route and one that is not crowded with vehicles, like some of the other more popular passes. It gives an eye-popping view of Mount Rainier.
Also along the highway is a rest stop that features a short trail along a scenic gorge-like area that showcases Clear Creek Falls and a fabulous view.
The rest of the trip along Hwy 12 is very pleasant, passing by some lakes and pastoral areas, along with the gateway to the north side of the Mount St Helens volcano. Access to this area is via forest service roads from the town of Randle and, unfortunately, are not accessible this early in the season.
What a kick my trip was! So much to see and do in the Great Pacific Northwest!