Featured in the Polk County Itemizer-Observer for keeping kids active and engaged, The Jungle Gym is a place where sock-footed tykes can traverse three bouncy playplaces, meander through colorful tunnels, and exercise imaginations in the Lego room. A lion-shaped inflatable playhouse beckons children to climb its mane, slide down its tongue, and punch its kidneys. Kids climb a rope ladder to reach a scenic zenith above friends and steer toy vehicles and trains to navigate the ground level. On occasion, Pippin the parrot visits to converse with kids or to squawk out instructions to build a makeshift birdcage in the Lego room. Toddlers mingle in a dedicated, safe play area and pintsize explorers navigate narrow thoroughfares.
After growing up on Oregon’s bountiful rivers, Castaway Guide Service’s owner Nathan Cornelius honed his chops as a guide in the Alaskan wilderness and the Patagonia region of Chile. Longing to return to the rivers of his youth, Nathan came home to Oregon and established an outfit to introduce others to the natural beauty of the Oregon coast. Along with business partner T.J. Zandoli, another Oregon native and alumnus of the Alaskan wilderness, Nathan leads guided fly-fishing trips for anglers of all abilities. While seeking out catches such as steelhead, salmon, and sea-run cutthroat, fisherfolk enjoy all the necessary tackle from Castaway’s tackle box and all the necessary beer from Ninkasi Brewing Company.
As a native Norwegian, Dag Johan Sundby traces his roots back to the Vikings, who sailed the North Atlantic as conquerors more than a 1,000 years ago. But, as a pursuer of the perfect Oregonian Pinot Noir, he looks back to times even more ancient, when the formation of sedimentary rock resulted in soil full of nutrients. This geological bounty gives rise to Johan Vineyards' yearly harvests of Burgundian grapes, bolstered by the ocean breeze, cool climes, and bedtime stories about a raisin who got his mojo back. The pressings of these fruits go into French Oak casks, aging for at least a year and a half before going into their final bottle. Inside the winery's tasting room, guests are surrounded by these casks as they sip on freshly uncorked vintages.
To Justin Doane, there are few things better than being out on the water and breathing in the coastal air. Having spent his youth shuttling between Oregon and Alaska on fishing trips with his father, he now has an in-depth understanding of local ecologies and where the best places are to seek steelhead and chinook, depending on the season. Today, he leads daylong trips out onto the Nestucca, Trask, Wilson, Nehalem, and Salmon Rivers, to name a few, and provides all the equipment necessary for amateur anglers to return home with impressive catches.
Helmed by experienced pilot Denton Honbeck, Pioneer Helicopters, Inc. elevates customers to the stratosphere with tours and flight lessons that afford views of scenic Salem and the Willamette River. Before cutting through the sky in a comfortable Robinson R44 Raven II, prospective cloud climbers will gather at Independence Airport, where they will meet their pilot and become familiar with flying procedures. Those who choose to tour the Salem area will gain a new perspective of everyday urban attractions, and Willamette River adventurers will enjoy sweeping vistas and a pterodactyl's-eye view of breathtaking crop circles.
Situated on 250 acres between Siletz Bay to the north and the great expanse of the Pacific Ocean to the west, Salishan Spa & Golf Resort welcomes visitors into a serene coastal environment surrounded by virgin forest and picturesque highlands. The resort has granted guests a wealth of diversions since opening in 1965, including a par-71 golf course redesigned by PGA professional and native Oregonian Peter Jacobsen. The course’s bent-grass fairways hug the hills that dot the coastline, yielding panoramic vistas of the Pacific on the front nine and the bay along the links-style back nine. Though challenging, three sets of tees per hole make the course enjoyable for every golfer and greatly increase an individual’s chances of making an ocean-in-one.
After a round, players can rest tuckered-out tendons in the spa, where saunas, rain showers, and whirlpools ease the physical self and a rustic-chic aesthetic works on spiritual clarity. Natural stone walls and tree-branch arrangements blur the boundaries between indoors and outdoors, and antler chandeliers present numerous options for hanging golf bags.
Course at a Glance:
* 18-hole, par-71 course
* Total length of 6,470 yards from the back tees
* Course rating of 72.3 from the back tees
* Course slope of 132 from the back tees
* Three sets of tees per hole