This morning we left Hood River with the intention of discovering something unexpected. We started up Rt 35 in the direction of Mt. Hood. It didn't take long to come to spectacular views of the mountain. The sky was blue and the snowy peaks contrasted sharply with the sky. It was spectacular.
We had a small leaflet from Vista House which we picked up yesterday. In addition to the map of waterfalls that we had used, there was a schematic of the main routes around Mt. Hood. There was a small road to Lost Lake. I had read about it in the guidebook and knew that there was a good view, so we decided to try to find it. We drove through a plateau north of Mt. Hood where the peak was easily visible. The plains were covered with flourishing orchards. There were peaches and some cherries, but also miles of pear trees.
At one point we stopped to photograph Mt Hood and turned around to see Mt. Adams, just opposite on the north side of the river. It was amazing to turn 180* and see another enormous snow capped peak.
The road wound around down into a valley and then up again. We reached an altitude where wild rhododendrons flourished.
Finally we arrived at the park entrance to Lost Lake. A kindly woman welcomed us and pointed us in the direction of the lodge. The place is mainly campsites grouped around a spectacular lake with a view of Mt. Hood.
We found a spot at the shore of the lake and broke out our picnic. Kate and I had replenished our picnic stores so the lunch was delicious. After we ate Kate did the dishes in the lake.
We watched osprey pull fish out of the lake and fly off with their catch. It was hard to imagine a better spot for a picnic. It is the most beautiful one we've found yet. We were glad to have found Lost Lake.
Finally we pulled ourselves away to star the drive to Yakima where we would spend the night.