Lewis and Clark reached the Pacific here in Oregon, succeeded by pioneers in covered wagons following the Oregon Trail to their promised land. Oregon continues to amaze and delight visitors and residents alike. Portland is the very model of a small modern city, clean and green. The Oregon coast stretches 300 miles from the Columbia River to California. The volcanoes of the Cascade Range include Mount Hood and Crater Lake, with the mighty Columbia River slicing through in a waterfall-filled gorge. In the northeast corner we find Hells Canyon, the continent's deepest, and the southeast has some of the emptiest landscapes in the country.
In 5th grade I wrote my "state report" on Oregon, which inspired me to one day visit all the places I had read about. Fifty years later, I have now pretty well checked them off my list! But I return to Oregon most years, finding new and wonderful places, and revisiting old favorites. Ironically, Oregon Caves was one of the last National Park sites that I photographed, in 2011, and only above-ground.
My four regions of Oregon follow the obvious north-south environmental divisions of the state.