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Old 06-29-2019, 06:45 PM   #1
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Dalles OR, Hwy 197 to 97

Anybody have any concerns to share about this route from Dalles, OR to connect Hwy 197 to Hwy 97 and south to Bend area? Heading from Portland area to Bend area and wanted to spend some time up the Columbia Gorge area before heading south to Bend. Looks like one pass to head over outside of Maupin but okay otherwise. Looking for something easy with no surprises. Not looking for a scenic route but just an easy drive to head to Sisters area and an RV park there. Thanks for any input.
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Old 07-10-2019, 09:53 AM   #2
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The Dalles to Bend, OR

I assume it's too late for your trip now, but we took this route 7/4 on our way south and stayed at Bend/Sisters Garden RV Resort...what a beautiful spot. Curious how you found the route if you ended up taking it? We are new to driving a class C and so far a lot of terrain feels like a challenge quite frankly. (I realize you are towing but was just curious how it went for you.)
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Old 07-10-2019, 06:05 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by drfievez View Post
I assume it's too late for your trip now, but we took this route 7/4 on our way south and stayed at Bend/Sisters Garden RV Resort...what a beautiful spot. Curious how you found the route if you ended up taking it? We are new to driving a class C and so far a lot of terrain feels like a challenge quite frankly. (I realize you are towing but was just curious how it went for you.)
Nope, not too late. Our trip is planned for early August so I was doing some early planning; and Bend/Sisters Garden RV resort is our destination from Troutdale. We've never been up I84 to The Dalles and thought that
would be a nice scenic route to see that part of the Columbia gorge area.

Anything along the 197 route that we should be concerned about? Thanks for the reply.
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Old 07-10-2019, 08:37 PM   #4
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I'm now realizing that our RV nav took us over to Hwy 26 just before Maupin, most likely due to the very twisty drop into that valley and back out again. As long as you've got the power, you should be fine. I have not driven the stretch after Maupin for many years and I've never towed it, but I'm recalling that it is very similar to the 197 stretch from The Dalles to Maupin.

Another route to consider is the Gorge until Hood River (which gives you a majority of the scenic gorge section) and then take 35 south around Mt. Hood and 26 south from there. Driving around the mountain gives you a bunch of scenic views even from the windshield. The mountain looks different close up and from the different angles. The Gorge from HR to TD is still beautiful, but the landscape changes between there and remains very similar way beyond The Dalles. The steep, treed Gorge is mostly on the West side of Hood River.

One other note in case you are just travelling from Troutdale and not a local there...the Gorge can get extremely windy so be mentally prepared for that.
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Old 07-10-2019, 09:27 PM   #5
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The WIND! I just traveled 84 from the Tri Cities area to Portland and on down 5 over the past few days. The wind in the Dalles was blowing 40+ and made for a few white knuckle moments and I got my worst tank of fuel that leg at 6 mpg. I only got 110 miles out of the tank of fuel it was brutal. There's a reason that Hood River is the windsurfing capital of the world I guess.
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Old 07-10-2019, 10:10 PM   #6
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We took the highway 35 route at Hood River a couple of years ago. We were in a car, but that would still be an easy drive with an RV. As mentioned previously, all the scenic waterfalls and such are before Hood River anyway.
Research this a little bit before you go because the road is somewhat curvy and narrow in places, but If you can, get off I 84 at the Corbett exit and take the Old Columbia River Highway. It will take you past all the waterfalls in the area plus the Vista House for a major viewing area overlooking the gorge. All of the things to see have pull outs or parking areas. If you stay on the 84, you'll only get a few glimpse as you drive by on the freeway.


Riverhttps://www.tripcheck.com/Pages/Scenic-Byways-Historic-Columbia-River
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