Oregon State Travel Guide

North America

On February 14, 1859, Oregon officially became the thirty-third state of the United States. The state has an area of ​​255,026 km², of which 248,849 km² is land. Oregon, the Beaver State, borders the Pacific Ocean to the west and is bordered by Washington State to the north, Idaho to the east, and California and Nevada to the south.

Important cities

The capital Salem is located in the Willamette Valley in the northwest of the state. Portland is about 47 miles up here. Oregon has 39 wildlife parks (wilderness areas), 14 national forests and one National Park, called Crater Lake. This park is unique because of the clear blue lake that was formed in the extinct crater of the volcano Mount Mazama. The rock formations around the lake were formed centuries ago by the volcanic activities. Crater Lake is the deepest lake in the US and is about 600 meters deep, 9.6 km long and 7.2 km wide. The park has been a protected area since 1902.

Crater Lake National Park

Crater Lake National Park is open year-round, except during heavy snowfall, and accessible through the south and west entrances. The north entrance is closed from October to mid-July due to snowfall. Oregon has numerous other lakes, such as Malheur Lake and Upper Klamath Lake. The main rivers are the Columbia, which forms most of the border with Washington, and the Snake, which forms a large part of the border with Idaho. Oregon is bisected from north to south by the Cascade Mountains, which stretch all the way from Canada to California. Thousands of lakes, about 900 glaciers and 18 volcanoes are located in the Cascades.

Mount St. Helens

The most famous volcano is Mount St. Helens, which is known for its huge eruption in 1980. The Cascades are also known for the many birds that winter here and breed in the spring. Various birding trails have been set out so that the most beautiful and rare species can be admired. Oregon is also home to the beaver, America’s largest rodent, hence the nickname Beaver State.


Lewis & Clark National Historic Trail

Between 1804 and 1806 there was an expedition led by Meriwether Lewis and William Clark, whose task was to explore the Missouri River and its tributaries. The expedition was approved by the then president of the United States, Thomas Jefferson, and a total of 33 men participated in it, of which 25 were volunteers.

The goal was to see if the Columbia, Oregon, and Colorado rivers offered any practical, direct water route across the continent. The expedition thus followed the path to the Pacific, while traveling more than 8,000 miles. Preparations for this journey had been going on since the spring of 1803. The entire expedition finally set off on the expedition on May 14, 1804, from the Camp Wood camp near the Wood River in the state of Illinois. Already in August of the same year, the expedition reached Nebraska and South Dakota. However, problems began in North Dakota, where the temperature reached a freezing -40°C and the group had to set up camp for the winter.

The expedition continued towards the Pacific Ocean and on the way she often met native Indians who helped her in many ways. Clark once helped a young Native American girl give birth to a son, and that would come back to him a hundred times in the future. The Shoshone Indians were very grateful and helped the expedition cross the Rockies. In August 1805, they therefore reached Montana, where they learned from the Indians how to make dugout canoes. They were thus able to navigate the Clearwater and Columbia Rivers and on November 24, 1805, they finally found themselves on the shores of the Pacific Ocean.

With the coming of winter, they were forced to build another winter camp. They placed it near an Indian tribe called Clatsop, and a fort of the same name was later built at this location. Everyone got through the winter in order, because it was completely classic and almost all of it rained. As soon as it warmed up a bit and spring began to arrive, the expedition set off on its return journey. On September 23, 1806, a group of adventurers returned home to St. Louis as heroes.

This expedition made a significant mark in the history of America and is considered a deed that changed the face of the country. Thanks to her, it was possible to find out that the desired northwest route, along which it would be possible to transport cargo by water from the center of America to the west coast, unfortunately does not exist. One of its participants died during the expedition, but it could still be considered very successful. All other members completed it and returned home safely.

Another reason why this expedition was undertaken was to obtain the center of the continent for America. The English occupied the territory from the north and the Spanish from the south. Therefore, the center of the continent could only belong to the one who thoroughly explores it and thus obtains it for his land.