Posts Tagged ‘Scenic Highway


Multnomah Falls & Benson Bridge, 1942

My uncle Felix took this image, up the Columbia River Gorge, using a vintage folding camera. As today, it was a beautiful outing to head up the Gorge on the Old Scenic Highway. Friends & family, from out of town, were always taken ‘up the Gorge’. Here Multnomah Falls is partially shown, with the Benson Bridge ( a footbridge) separating the upper/lower portions of the falls.

Multnomah Falls, Benson Bridge, Felix Stencil, 1942, SwittersB


Vista House Foundation

The Vista House is a national, historic landmark situated atop Crown Point on the Oregon side of the Columbia River in the ‘Gorge’. It sets 730′ above the river along the Old Columbia River Highway (Scenic Highway to locals). It was quite the structure in its heyday. It is still a beautiful structure.

One of the treasures along the Scenic Highway, and not just at the Vista House, is the masonry. Walls, bridges, railings are found up and down the Gorge, east of Portland. Some more history for those interested.


This 1918 Post Card of the Vista House shows the stone work. Note where the man is standing.

Ironically, when I was up there the other day, I took a shot of the wall exactly where that man is standing in the post card.

vista house wall-SwittersB-photography-Oregon-Gorge

The Vista House has been a landmark for so long, it became the center piece figure for a local law enforcement badge long ago.

Crown Point-Badge-SO-CCU-SwittersB

The architect, creator of the Vista house was Edgar M. Lazarus. He described the structure as “a temple to the natural beauty of the Gorge..” Originally the precipice, upon which the Vista House stands, was called Thor’s Heights. Later it was changed to Crown Point. The Vista House has undergone significant renovations. It is subjected to some of the harshest weather at times. Yet, it still stands majestically overlooking the Gorge.


Nature: Rocks, Socks….I don’t know

I love rock formations. To photograph, to (well, I was going to say to hop about…but I am far less nimble than I used to be and even now am trying to heal up two badly sprained ankles and a battered shin and knees from “hopping”). But, I am inspired by the majesty and other worldliness (Joshua Tree National Park comes to mind) of such outcroppings.

Rock Wall

I have bought books re the geology of Oregon and have taken them along on hikes, backpacking, car camping etc. over the years and learned a bit about pushed up, erupted, flowed and eroded over the eons. But, beyond basalt or bath salts, I am pretty well lost amongst the columnar, igneous and obsidians and all the other descriptions of rocks. So, I just click away now and then because something just pleases.

Basalt and Lichen SwittersBThere are also many waterfalls along the Historic Columbia River Highway (Scenic Highway-Gorge) that freeze up in the Winter for amazing images or provide a cool mist on hot days.

horsetail falls swittersb

Horsetail Falls (Oregon)

Interesting 1974 geology publication called The Ore Bin

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August 2020

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