Luxurious Mountain Lodge on Columbia River
The word skamania means swift water in the Chinook language. Inasmuch as Skamania Lodge is situated on the Columbia River near more than 70 natural waterfalls, the resort is aptly named. Surrounded by 175 thickly wooded acres in the Columbia River Gorge, the sprawling mountain retreat's sloping roof and timber-centric architecture blend artfully into the landscape, and its stately interior calls to mind the majestic mountain lodges popular with turn-of-the-20th-century travelers.
Upstairs in a superior river-view room, windows overlook a prototypical Cascade Mountain landscape abounding with verdant evergreen trees. In the room anchored by a pillow-top king bed or two double beds, each crowned with a leather headboard, a warm color palette and original artwork by artists hailing from the Pacific Northwest decorate the space. Fluffy terry-cloth robes, a flat-screen TV, and in-room WiFi round out a full complement of creature comforts.
Back downstairs, the Cascade Dining Room serves an eclectic selection of gourmet cuisine, such as smoked pork loin and Washington beef, in front of sweeping views of the mountains. River Rock restaurant prepares less formal fare for diners to enjoy in the radiating warmth of an enormous rock fireplace. The lodge's outdoor offerings include a beautifully landscaped 18-hole golf course and several private trails, which can be traversed on mountain bikes borrowed from Skamania's fitness center. An indoor swimming pool and outdoor tennis courts also stand ready for games of amphibious mixed doubles.
Columbia River Gorge: Natural Splendor near Historical Attractions
The most famous of the dozens of natural waterfalls dotting the Columbia River Gorge is Multnomah Falls, an awe-inspiring, 611-foot cascade reachable by a hike that culminates in a bridge offering close-up views of the roaring water. A popular nearby winery offers tastings, and a renovated saloon, originally constructed in 1876, dishes up innovative Pacific Northwest dishes. Tours of an iconic wool mill acquaint visitors with traditional weaving techniques and the metallic sheep from which steel wool derives.