Situated in northwestern Washington County, just off Highway 26, the main route between Portland and the Oregon Coast, the small city of North Plains packs quite a punch. North Plains (population 1,700) is surrounded by lush farm land, and attracts throngs of sports enthusiasts and thrill seekers who flock to the area for its collection of activities, such as biking, golf, disc golf, and glider plane rides.
The North Plains Glider Port (Photo by Paul Loofburrow)
Nestled in a picturesque wooded canyon is Horning’s Fishing and Picnic Hideout, a multi-activity attraction that offers fly fishing and cast and lure fishing, and also allows overnight tent and RV camping. Don’t let the name fool you, this pastoral “hideout” wears many hats, as it boasts three highly rated disc golf courses, is home to endurance sporting events, such as Warrior Dash, and holds several music festivals throughout the year – all of this, plus fishing, picnicking, hiking and more.
If golf is your game, tee up at Pumpkin Ridge Golf Club, the famed, championship golf facility that has hosted many well-known golfers. Framed by spectacular vistas, Pumpkin Ridge has ranked among the country’s best courses to play for more than 20 years.
Take to the skies in a glider plane with a guided flight piloted by the Willamette Valley Soaring Club, which offers rides at the North Plains Glider Port (11870 NW Dersham Rd., North Plains) May through October (weather permitting). Marvel at the breathtaking views of the Tualatin and Willamette Valleys while soaring 3,000 feet in the air. Rides are offered on a first-come, first-served basis, and a standard ride is $120.
During summer months, visit the North Plains Farmers Market for a taste of local produce and artisan good (Saturdays 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., June 15-September 28). Year-round, browse the one-of-a-kind treasures at The Treasure Chest Antique Mall (open Monday-Saturday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Sunday, 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.).
Tantalize your tastebuds at one of Oregon’s Washington County’s newest wineries/tasting rooms: Abbey Creek Winery. This family run winery, which operates a vineyard estate not far from Washington County, produces Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc, and is open Saturdays from 12-5 p.m. (or by appointment).
Grab a burger and a brew at the Rogue Brew Pub & Eatery. This unassuming restaurant, located in the city’s center, earns raves for its burgers and selection of microbrew beers. The joint is jumping on Friday nights with live music. Or pop into the Old Hich-en Post for breakfast and lunch, or partake in their happy hour, which is daily from 3-7 p.m.
Mark Your Calendars
North Plains is home to several annual events, including the four-day bluegrass and Americana music fest, the Northwest String Summit (July 18-21, 2013) and the Warrior Dash endurance race (September 7, 2013).
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