We took a drive to Mount Hood to see it up close. On the way we stopped at a fly shop outside of Welches, Oregon to pick up some fishing lures and get information on which areas would be good to fish near Mt. Hood. Lucky for us, the gentleman behind the counter was knowledgeable about fishing in the area. He knew just about all you needed to know if you fish ANYWHERE in the state of Oregon. Not only was he entertaining and helpful, we enjoyed his enthusiasm and courtesy to us.
After our stop at the fishing shop, we drove to the Timberline Lodge to get a closer look at Mount Hood.
The Timberline Lodge was built between 1936 – 1938 by the WPA and contains beautiful stone mason art, carved woodwork, and heavy timber beams. This National Historic Site, which is maintained by the National Park Service and operated by a private concessionaire, and was dedicated by FDR on September 28, 1937 at a ceremony (before) its (final) completion. The project was overseen by several architects and project managers who hired local area artisans and labor (skilled and unskilled). According to the Federal Writers’ Project, “All classes, from the most elementary hand labor, through the various degrees of skill to the technically trained were employed. Pick and shovel wielders, stone cutters, plumbers, carpenters, steam fitters, painters, wood-carvers, cabinetmakers, metal workers, leather toilers, seamstresses, weavers, architects, authors, artists, actors, musicians and landscape planners each contributed to the project, and each, in his way, was conscious of the ideal toward which bent their energies.” Those employed also utilized recycled materials such as cedar utility poles, tire chains and old railroad rails to construct the 40,000 square foot building. The total cost of the building was $695,750, of which 80% of the building cost was paid to labor. The skilled workers made around $.90/hour while the unskilled labor was paid $.55/hour during construction. It’s difficult to imagine that kind of a wage paid let alone living in a government tent camp; but jobs were scarce and the project was a blessing for those unemployed during the Great Depression. Ultimately the lodge became a tourist destination for thousands to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Northwest. The ski lifts were eventually installed and now the resort (Mt. Hood Meadows) boasts year-round skiing and snowboarding.
The view of Mt. Hood and the surrounding area astounds you. As you arrive at the summit, you get a glimpse of the nearby snow-capped Mt. Jefferson–the second highest peak in Oregon.
At the Timberline Lodge we treated ourselves to lunch as we watched tourists, skiers, and mountain climbers frolick in the snow from the restaurant.
After lunch we headed to Trillium Lake to kayak and fish. Trillium Lake is just down the road from the Lodge where people can swim, camp, kayak and fish.
The lake is small (65 acres) but the view of Mt. Hood is stunning. Pam did a great job paddling me around the lake to fish; and although I had no luck, we enjoyed our time on the lake. After we packed the kayak, we headed north through the towns of Parkdale and Mt. Hood. We saw acres and acres of beautiful fruit trees, vineyards and nurseries throughout the valley growing lots of fruits and vegtables. We often take for granted how much capital farmers in this country employ in order to provide the valuable commodities we need for survival. It’s good to see firsthand how proudly they take care of the land for our benefit. We took our last look at Mt. Hood and made our way back to our campsite.
We left there a few weeks ago and are now in Winthrop, Washington to visit, hike and fish in the Northern Cascade mountains.
Hopefully the weather will be cool and I’ll get to catch more than one fish!