|Sunny ski day!|
A week ago last Sunday had me pondering these very questions. It was supposed to be a sunny day on the mountain, and a day of spring skiing sounded wonderful. But I'd also heard the fruit trees were blooming in the Hood River Valley. Having missed the big bloom for the last few springs, I really wanted to see it this year.
|Dean and Kathy make a cute couple|
So I did what someone with multiple interests would do - and compromised. I spent a fun morning on the slopes with my friends Dean and Kathy. The skies were blue and the snow was soft. I had a great time skiing from the resort's very top lift.
|Dean riding Outer Limits|
The views were so spectacular! I could see the surrounding hills with foggy clouds hanging in the valleys between.
|Foggy valleys below|
By early afternoon, endless solar energy beaming down began turning the firm, slick snow into a soupy, sticky mess. Time to quit skiing - and pay a visit to the Hood River Valley.
|Mt. Hood and pear orchard|
Yes, a trip home via the Hood River Valley is a bit longer than the standard direct route down highway 26. But this time of year, the fabulous scenery from thousands of blooming fruit trees makes it well worth the extra minutes.
The Hood River Valley is known for producing lots of fruit, specifically apples and pears. It's one of the world's largest pear growing areas.
|Found a pollinator|
A drive down US Highway 35 is particularly scenic in spring when huge blooming orchards line the nearby hillsides.
|Rows of trees|
I started my quest for blossoms outside the tiny town of Parkdale. It didn't take long for me to pass by a large field of pear trees in full flower mode. Not only was I able to capture the full height of bloom, Mt. Hood anchored the nearby skyline. What could be better?
After several photo stops around Parkdale, I drove further down the valley towards the city of Hood River. Although the trees at these lower elevations were starting to shed their petals, I still was able to capture some great shots of an orchard with perfect views of Mt. Adams down it's rows.
|Mt Adams anchors this row|
Oh it was a glorious afternoon! Clear blue skies and acres of trees decked out in frilly white pear blossoms.
|The Hood River Valley is gorgeous!|
Only in Oregon - Where else can you ski all morning and tour blooming orchards on your way home!
(Have I told you how much I love living here?)