In Oregon, school students are required to learn their state history in fourth grade. We were a bit late and studied it last year in fifth grade. Oregon's most interesting history is from the mid-nineteenth century when pioneers were arriving to settle the state via the Oregon Trail, which passes through here, over Mt. Hood to the Willamette Valley on the western side. Last spring we went to the Columbia Gorge Discovery Center to learn about the difficulties the pioneers faced in making the trip past the mountains. They had to choose between using the Columbia River or traveling the Barlow Road over the mountain.
Last week some hearty folks set up a pioneer re-enactment camp up on the Barlow Road. We headed out early one morning to find them.
Oregon is proud of its heritage and its place in U.S. pioneer history.
Like making fire using a flint and steel.
This home-made contraption was for making rope.
The boys were curious about making one of these for themselves.
At one station the kids got to try their hand at carding wool.
The final station we visited had toys that nineteenth century children played with on the Oregon Trail.
Before we left for home, we made a side trip up the mountain to a spot I had visited before.
But we did find an artisan spring and had some pure mountain water.
We again have to recognize how privileged we are to live in this beautiful and fascinating place.