Keeping Portland Weird

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Sometimes you have to do stuff for you, mom. Recently I traveled to Portland on a pre-planned trip with a good friend. We wanted to go somewhere we both had neither been before and since I had a friend in the Portland area - we picked there! And wouldn't you know it - the area had 99% totality for the eclipse that hit the United States and although the entire Oregon area was packed and crazy busy - since we booked way in advance we were able to snag a deal on a car and an Airbnb rental without getting into the crazy rate skyrocketing!

Eclipsing with 99% totality
We flew into Portland on a Saturday and went straight to the little "downtown" area and met up with my travel partner's local friends for a drink and dinner. We settled at North 45 and ate outdoors in their patio area, enjoying some happy hour drinks and yummy burgers and IPA beer! It was fun meeting some locals and learning about their favorite parts of Portland and what they did for fun during the week!

Yummy burger, rosemary garlic fries and local organic ketchup from North 45
After dinner we made our way to some local thrift stores to peruse (because I thrift everywhere!) and then headed to the suburbs where we were staying with my friend and her family for the weekend.

While in the burbs, we did so much! Brunched at Pine State Biscuits - holy hannah it was amazing and well worth the wait!! Then we headed to Council Crest Park for some mountain viewing. It's an amazing little area where you can view all of the big mountains that surround the Portland area including Mount St. Helens, Mt Hood, Mt Rainier, Mt Jefferson and Mt Adams. It's pretty breathtaking - even on a slightly foggy day that we had.

Amazing biscuits and gravy at Pine State Biscuits
Views at Council Crest Park
Then we headed to the Nike employee store. Nike is based in Beaverton, OR and my friend works for their corporate office. We were able to get passes into the store and get some great deals on some Nike swag! Afterwards, we treated ourselves to a wine flight at a local winery, Rex Hill. Nestled on a hill, it had amazing views of the vineyard, and surrounding area. We were blessed with warm sunshine and enjoyed their rose and select pinot noirs. Then grabbed some food and were totally cashed for the night.

Enjoying some rose all day!
Monday was the big eclipse day! People were asked not to drive and so we stuck around my friend's house and shared their glasses to snag some glimpses of the sun - it was surreal moreso to see how eery the atmosphere was (dark, animals quiet, etc.) and watch everyone in her complex sitting outside in their glasses looking up. Was kinda like a sci-fi movie! But such a unique experience and once the eclipse was over my buddy and I headed into the city of Portland for our touristy stuff.

We snagged some donuts at Voodoo Donuts - what a unique place (that had a line at 11 am on a Tuesday!) with some yummy treats! Then enjoyed lunch and a drink at Pints brewery where I had a salad, free fries and an IPA! Clearly I like IPAs :) I had the Awesome Sauce New England Style IPA and it was delicious! Then we got to walking and made our way to the famous Powell's Book store and it did not disappoint! It's the world's largest independent book store and sells new and used books. To say it's massive is an understatement. It's gigantic with colored neighborhoods featuring every single genre of book you could imagine. I snagged the twins two books - a Curious George selection and Sisters ( a cute book about two sister who love each other but are different!). I also picked up an Oregon sticker for my macbook and a used fiction novel for myself! We finished out the day by checking into our Airbnb a few miles from the downtown area, relaxed for a bit and the ventured out for dinner at Kelly's Olympian which is a garage style themed bar/restaurant with motorcycles dangling from the ceiling and local brews on tap.
Standing in line at Voodoo!

Kelly's Olympian bar
We were pretty wiped after dinner and had an early night in (plus we were living 2 hours ahead of the time we normally live sooooo we were pooped!). On our final full day we planned to get up early and get naturistic. We drove to Multnomah Falls, a beautiful waterfall snuggled into the ultra high cliffs right off the interstate. You can walk up the the falls, over a bridge and then up to the very very top of the falls. It's great for a hike, people watching, and just enjoying some peaceful parts of nature. After the falls we headed back into Portland for lunch where we walked up and down the Nob Hill area checking out the shops and finally settling for lunch at the Fireside. And because I HAD to - I snagged a cone from Salt & Straw on our way out of the neighbor hood. I indulged on honey lavender ice cream with a second scoop of strawberry balsamic and black pepper. It was heavenly.

Enjoying the Multnomah Falls

Brunch at Fireside restaurant
Since we were up early that morning adventuring, we decided to go back to the Airbnb and do our own thing for the early afternoon. I went thrifting :) And then when I got back we had our last Portland meal at Bamboo sushi which was less than a mile from our stay. It was delicious but spicy! I had some tempura avocado which was an interesting taste and gosh their rolls were nommmmms. Then back to the Airbnb to pack and relax - and dread our super early morning wake up to catch our 8 am flight back to reality.

Overall it was a terrific trip - I would recommend Portland to ANYONE! The weather was great in the summer - warm but not humid. There's so much to do and it's such a free , unique place to adventure all of the areas the city has to offer. There's enough to do for 48 hours in PDX or up to a week in the area. PLUS the food and the beer is to die for!! Fantastic!

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