Ask a traveler from across the United States to name a few specifics of the state of Oregon.
After a lengthy conversation on how to pronounce our state’s name, they will probably concede with trees (lots of), Portland, Voodoo Doughnuts, craft beer, the High Desert, coffee, and bearded hipsters.
While this is a relatively accurate depiction of some of the things that make the Beaver State great, it ignores some of the best treasures, eateries, and potential adventures to be had in the small towns of Oregon.
Little pockets of lumber towns nestled next to the freight train line, five, ten miles off of I-5 along what used to be the old highway.
They hold homegrown folks with never-say-die attitudes, hearty restaurant meals, crazy sign ladies, delicious wineries, covered wagons, covered bridges, and troves of untapped history.
Some, like Scottsburg, only 20 miles from the coast, were thriving and expanding until disaster struck. For Scottsburg, it was a flood in 1861, for others, it was the Interstate. These towns are host to city-wide garage sales, to festivals and live music. To excellent fishing—salmon, shad, and bass, following the west Umpqua River out to the wide mouth of the Pacific Ocean.
Towns like Drain, Elkton, Yoncalla, Oakland, Yachats, Scottsburg, and Depoe Bay—these treasures are waiting to be explored, tasted, enjoyed, and shared.
And heck, if we are going to take a veritable tour of Small Town, Oregon, I am ready to be your guide to the quirks and joys of these tree-hidden wonders.
So buckle in, trust me, and let’s set out on this two lane road.
More adventure to come, folks.
Some cool links: