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Old 04-03-2016, 03:29 PM   #1
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Multnomah falls and Columbia river

We are going to our son's wedding ( April 16th )in Chehalis Washington. We are driving our 38 foot Dutch Star with a Honda Pilot toad from Fresno ca. Our first stop might be Grants Pass, and then we want to go directly to the falls and see the Columbia River Gorge for the first time. We can only stay a night and a day there.

Most of the rv parks reviews on the Oregon side of the falls talk about trains, highway, and Airport noise, and we are light sleepers.

Am I correct in assuming that I might do better by staying in parks near Vancouver? We don't want to go very Far East in our rig to get to a park.

Would also appreciate any recommendations for parks in Grants Pass and one near Lacey or Olympia Washington as well. We will have our some of our adult kids and young grandkids ( all boys ...one loves military history, the other sports, and the third just loves Grandpa the best with us as well!
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Old 04-03-2016, 03:54 PM   #2
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Grew up in the Gorge and have gone back many times. Train noise is a problem in a lot of the RV parks. If you want a nice park near the falls we like Ainsworth State Park. Just off the freeway. It has full service and some sites for bigger rigs. Was no reservation park but think you can make them now. Also we like Memaloose State Park near the Dalles - Great view of the river and full service but you will here the trains a couple times a night. There is a county park near Hood River don't remember the name and think it's only water and electric but near the Wind Surfing and the town is nice. There are also many private choices.
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Old 04-03-2016, 06:38 PM   #3
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Fresno to Grants Pass is about 500 miles - that's a long day. Between Medford and Grants Pass (Gold Hill) is Valley of the Rogue State Park. It is a good layover park. Or, if you can go another 45 minutes you will come to 7 Feathers in Canyonville and one of the best parks in Oregon.

Bridgeview (Gold Hill) and Moon Mountain (south end of Grants Pass) are nice possibilities also.

Ainsworth State Park and Memaloose State Parks are excellent options - we like them both. There is a KOA in Cascade Locks which makes a good Launchpad for a brief Gorge stop. Sandy Riverfront RV park may be a possibility on the west end of the Gorge in Troutdale.
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Old 04-03-2016, 06:53 PM   #4
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Thanks Melvo and zekgb. I like to drive far on the first day! I will check out those parks you mentioned
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Old 04-04-2016, 09:24 AM   #5
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If you have the time, there is a nice casual restaurant at Multnomah falls.
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Old 04-04-2016, 09:41 AM   #6
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Second Seven Feathers, great pull throughs for an over night and a shuttle to the casino for dinner after a long drive. Of course it has all the features of a good RV resort, nice and clean. Plus a truck stop for fuel. Be sure to get reservations, lots of people know about it.

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Old 04-04-2016, 11:59 AM   #7
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Last time I visited Multnomah Falls the parking area was packed - I'd suggest you overnight in Portland area and take your tow car to the falls. You also can hike up to the top of the falls. If you make a day of it also drive up to Crown Point but not in the RV. Crown Point State Scenic Corridor - Oregon State Parks and Recreation The view of the Columbia River is outstanding from that location.
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Old 04-04-2016, 12:05 PM   #8
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Over night in Portland or Vancouver. Multnomah Falls and all of the cool things in the Gorge are an easy full day trip out and back in a good car or pickup. If the weather is nice, be prepared for big crowds, especially if it 's the weekend.

The Gorge has train tracks on both sides of the river, and they are busy. If that kind of things is something you almost always try to avoid, then finding a quieter park in the Portland/Vancouver area is what I would recommend.

I might also recommend giving yourself more than one day to tour the area. There is more to see in the greater Portland area than just the Gorge if you haven't toured around the area before.

I'm a "local", from Vancouver. I might could help you with some advice, but for parks I'd check some of the places where people leave RV park reviews for more information.

Have a great trip!
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Old 04-05-2016, 02:35 PM   #9
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Great advice. I will see if I can get another day in the Gorge. Since our destination is near Olympia, Washington, is the Olympia National park worth checking out?
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Old 04-05-2016, 10:00 PM   #10
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It's called Olympic National Park.
Lake Quinault is about 2 hours from Olympia, nice hiking trails, historic lodge with a great restaurant.
Up to the Hoh rainforest is amazing, but about 4 hours.
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Old 04-05-2016, 10:31 PM   #11
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Great advice. I will see if I can get another day in the Gorge. Since our destination is near Olympia, Washington, is the Olympia National park worth checking out?
Olympia is quite a distance from the main park area of Olympia Nat'l Park. The entrance road is between Sequim and Port Angeles. Then further west is the rain forest area. Yes, they are both worth checking out but not from Olympia. Consider moving closer.
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Old 04-05-2016, 10:47 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Melvo View Post
Grew up in the Gorge and have gone back many times. Train noise is a problem in a lot of the RV parks. If you want a nice park near the falls we like Ainsworth State Park. Just off the freeway. It has full service and some sites for bigger rigs. Was no reservation park but think you can make them now. Also we like Memaloose State Park near the Dalles - Great view of the river and full service but you will here the trains a couple times a night. There is a county park near Hood River don't remember the name and think it's only water and electric but near the Wind Surfing and the town is nice. There are also many private choices.
Memaloose state park can only be gotten to from the westbound lanes of I-84 through the rest area. Sits on a bluff with the RR tracks just below. Also windy there at times. Nice park though and the train noise isn't bad due to the bluff.
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Seven Feathers is at MP 99. It's rated 10 10 10 and a great spot to stay. Good food at the casino although there's a restaurant right near the park. Shuttle service will even take you into town and there is a good restaurant or two there.
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Old 04-05-2016, 11:16 PM   #13
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Be prepared for some wind along the Columbia river. We've been through there several times and it's always very windy.
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Old 04-05-2016, 11:32 PM   #14
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Be prepared for some wind along the Columbia river. We've been through there several times and it's always very windy.
40-50 mph winds are not unusual there, and if headed west they are usually a headwind. Coming back from Newmar in 2004 I was getting 3 mpg fighting them with our '02 DSDP with ISC 350.
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