The Hood River County Fruit Loop is 35 miles of orchards, forests, farmlands, and friendly communities, with a drive that includes gorgeous viewpoints and vistas. Along the Loop are 31 visitor-friendly businesses: farm stands, wineries, alpaca farms, a chestnut farm, lavender fields, and gift stores. Fresh fruit and produce are available throughout the summer and early fall. Join us for these fall events: September 19-20 Pear Celebration & October 24-25 Heirloom Apple Celebration.
Early emigrants scurrying toward the Willamette Valley on the Oregon Trail barely gave the Grande Ronde Valley a nod. By the 1860s, the enchanted valley—ringed by the Wallowa and Blue mountains and rivers running through it—called out to settlers. There was gold in the hills, decent soil and water for farming. Settling here meant no more arduous mountain crossings or rafting down treacherous rivers. Some stayed to build a thriving hub between Portland and Boise, initially dubbed Brownsville but incorporated as La Grande in 1865 after city leaders learned another town had already claimed the name.
Henry Pittock arrived in Oregon via wagon train in 1853 at just 19 years old. In 1860, as payment for back wages, he became owner of The Oregonian and subsequently married his wife, Georgiana. So began a life of entrepreneurism for Pittock and one of philanthropy for Georgiana. In 1914, the grand home designed for the Pittocks by Oregon architect Edward Foulkes was completed, and eleven family members moved into the mansion that overlooks Portland and Mt. Hood from the city’s northwestern hills. By the early 1960s, the home lay vacant. The City of Portland bought the property for $225,000 and has since restored the home to its original grandeur. Stroll the lush gardens, take in the views and tour the museum daily. pittockmansion.org