For those who want to view the solar eclipse from the "zone of totality", you will need to make your way south or east of Portland. And you will also need to take part or all of the day off on Monday, Aug 21, since the eclipse peaks at about 10am.
Path of the total eclipse: http://www.eclipse20...7/states/OR.htm
I had toyed with the idea of trying to find a spot to camp the weekend before, but it's going to be crazy busy out there for finding a spot that isn't reservable. I have a hunch the eclipse weekend could be more frustrating for finding a camping spot than July 4 or Labor Day weekends. But it might still be worth trying to brainstorm an option people don't necessarily think of as camping locations (there are lots of old logging roads... but those are always a little challenging for group camping adventures)
It might be easier to wake up early and drive to a trailhead where we can run up to a viewpoint to take in the eclipse mid-run. That means we need a run within 1-2 hours of Portland. And I imagine traffic will be a cluster that day, so we would need to wake up early to get out of town.
1. Easiest. Drive south to Willamette Mission State Park or Minto Brown in Salem. Those are both within an hour of Portland, and mostly on I-5, so odds of traffic issues are lower. If we opt for Minto Brown, that is close to downtown Salem, so we could grab brunch/lunch afterward. We could probably leave Portland at 7 and make this option work.
2. Deschutes River Trail. While there is a little campground at Mecca Flats (near Warm Springs), I suspect it will be filled with boaters and fishermen long before the weekend of the eclipse. But there is a lovely trail along the river here. 2 hour drive under normal conditions, so it's hard to say what the drive on 26 might be like on eclipse morning. I suspect we would need to head out before 6 to get there in time. But Hey 26 might be easier than the other options below
3. Cascade Head. Not even sure why I am throwing this one on the list. Mostly because I think it would be a spectacular spot to be, but I imagine it will be overrun with folks staying in Lincoln City, and driving to the coast that morning... probably not going to be possible.
4. Central Oreon - Three Fingered Jack, Mt Washington or Jefferson Park. Beautiful views from the PCT, but all of these would require driving through Salem and then up past Detroit Lake - I suspect traffic will suck, and it's a long drive for day of. We could possibly find camping in this area, but it would likely require a weekend commitment and trying to find some place to camp. It is possible that somewhere like Jack Lake could be available if we headed up on Friday, but then there is a commitment for 3 nights of camping...
5. Smith Rock. Would be an easier drive if we stayed in Bend (which is just slightly south of the zone of totality) versus trying to get there from Portland.
Who wants in on this fun, and what option do you prefer?