Description - Portland is a city of outstanding public art, dozens of urban parks and green spaces, a lively downtown, and a world-class transportation system. Downtown Portland boasts an amazing array of attractions, including an outstanding collection of cast iron and terra cotta architecture, the largest new-and-used bookstore in the world, a nationally acclaimed art museum, and a vibrant culinary community.
Copyright: Zander Higbie-Interactive Outdoors, Inc.
The Coast Range and Clatsop State Forest from U.S. Highway 26
- Dedicated in 1948, Portland's 5,000-acre Forest Park is the largest forested municipal park in the United States. Just two minutes from Portland's downtown, the lush forest is home to trillium, more than 50 miles of interconnecting trails, 100 types of birds such as the Red Crossbill and Stellar Jay, and dozens of species of furry critters. Portland's waterfront development and park systems (Portland has 37,000 acres of parks) are the envy of cities around the nation. One of Portland's parks, Mt. Tabor, is the only extinct volcano within the limits of a United States city.
The Portland Metro Area has six State Park sites including the Banks-Vernonia State Trail, Willamette Stone State Heritage Site, Tryon Creek State Natural Area, Mary S. Young State Recreation Area, Bonnie Lure State Recreation Area and Milo McIver State Park. These park sites offer opportunities to experience a piece of nature within a short distance from the city. Situated along the scenic Clackamas River, McIver State Park is only 45 minutes away from Portland. This beautiful park provides a variety of outstanding recreational opportunities including the closest State Park campground to the city. Mary S. Young State Park offers a peaceful place to walk or sit by the Willamette River. This quiet, forested park is a favorite for urban birders. As you walk deeper into the forest on the numerous trails, it's easy to forget you're in a city.
Mount Hood can be seen rising in the distance outside the city. The 11,235 foot peak offers the only year-round skiing and snowboarding in the United States. Other attractions near the city include the Columbia River Gorge, the Mt. Hood National Forest and the Pacific coast.
Recreation - The Portland Metropolitan Area offers some of the best outdoor recreation opportunities of any large metropolitan area in the country. Biking, hiking, fishing, picnicking, viewing nature, bird-watching, fishing, camping, canoeing, rafting, kayaking, and horseback riding are a few of the popular activities available within or very near the city.
Climate - The area receives a high amount of precipitation. Much of the precipitation comes from October to April in the form of rain at the low elevations and as wet heavy snow in the higher elevations. Winter temperatures are normally cool at the lower elevations and cold at the higher elevations. Although snow is possible in the lowest elevations, it is infrequent and does not stay on the ground for long. Late spring, summer and early autumn bring the best chance for clear, sunny days and bring moderate temperatures.
Portland is located in northwest Oregon, near the confluence of the Willamette and Columbia Rivers. Interstate 5 runs north-south through Portland and Interstate 84 leads into the city from the east.