Archive of older cons
Watch this video to get a glimpse of what the Portland area has to offer.
More information about Portland itself is coming soon.
For those of you who prefer words, here are some possible day-trips or extensions. In no particular order:
The Columbia River Gorge
Just east of Portland out Interstate 84 you will find the awe-inspiring Columbia River Gorge home to quaint riverside towns, many waterfalls, excellent hikes at all levels of difficulty and great windsurfing. The highest of the waterfalls (Multnomah Falls) is just 30 minutes east. A trip to the gorge can be exhilarating or soothing, so if either your id or ego needs a fix, you can find something satisfying in the gorge. www.oregon.com/attractions/multnomah_falls
Rising high about the cityscape is the majestic Mt. Hood. Even in July, it will be snow-capped and if you were so inclined, there will be a few skiers high up on the mountain. Others might just wish to see Timberline Lodge (where The Shining was filmed, the real one not the one with the guy from Wings) or hike around the alpine fields and meadows and see an actual tarn. You could try panning for gold in one of the streams or mining but I'm afraid you'll find most of the ore gone. www.flickr.com/photos/markschindler1200/191902010/
Mt. St. Helens
If you haven't been to Portland in say 32 years, you might not recognize this peak. It's in the same place, about 50 miles northeast of the city, but for those of you without helicopters, it is a couple of hours by car. But there is more gone than there used to be. If you go to the mountain (we prefer that to having it come to you), you can see videos, visit information centers and hike around areas that were devastated and are slowly recovering.
The Pacific Coast
If you take Horace Greeley's advice and go west from Portland you will soon (90 minutes or so) hit the Pacific. My advice is to stop just short. The state is deservedly proud of its state law which makes the entire 363-mile coastline public land. Highway 26 takes you to the coast and went you hit the shore go north or south for numerous options either way. Beaches and towns in easy reach include Astoria (where The Goonies was filmed) Seaside (more developed, with arcades, shops, rentals-a-plenty, and Skee-ball) and Cannon Beach (more reserved and tranquil with boutiques and fine dining.
And speaking of fine dining, the Willamette Valley (the Willamette River flows through Portland) is home to a couple of hundred wineries. Many offer tours and tastings and are within an hour or two of Portland. Organized tours that take you to several vineyards are available. You can be picked up from your hotel door, e.g. on a trip that would take you to visit 5 wineries in a single afternoon.