Vista House at Crown Point was dedicated in 1918 as “the finishing achievement for the greatest highway in America.” (See Historic U.S. 30)
Officially known as Crown Point State Park, a description from the Vista House Story says this remarkable structure “Affords shelter and comfort to all who come to look on the splendor of the scene.”
I ended up here when the colors of the sunset were being reflected in the stained glass windows, adding to the magic of this place.
Sunset is obviously a spectacular event here!
Samuel Lancaster (Asst. Highway Engineer for Multnomah County in 1913), supervised the Columbia River Highway project and his proposal was to “inspire the traveler along the highway and to make the wonders of the gorge accessible.” He thought “the Crown Point promontory was the ideal site for “an observatory from which the view both up and down the Columbia could be viewed in silent communion with the infinite.”
I totally agree! It really is one of the most majestic views I’ve ever been blessed to witness.
Pulling out from the parking area and looking back, I loved how it was highlighted by the sunset.
Continuing on Hwy. 30, the next lookout is called Chanticleer Point where you can see Vista House from a distant perspective.
Zoomed a bit to bring it closer.
As wonderful as the sunsets are, if you want to see the inside, you’ll have to get there before closing time at 4:00.
It’s worth two visits and the museum is interesting with its old photos and history, and on a day that’s not too windy, you can get outside to the upper observation deck.
Crown Point State Scenic Corridor (Oregon State Parks): The octagonal building with its green ceramic tile roof houses a museum, gift shop and interpretive display of historic and geologic points of interest in the Gorge.
OregonLive.com: The state park Vista House atop Crown Point (south) is one of the signature man-made features of the gorge. Perched 600 feet above the river, the house was restored in 2006.
My visit in 2002 (MaliasRV): When I started this journey, there were lots of famous landmarks I wanted to see, like Niagara Falls and Grand Canyon. But I felt like I had discovered a secret land since I had never heard of this area before. I kept exclaiming, “Why didn’t somebody tell me about this???”
My visit in 2005 (MaliasMiles): Even though our goal was to head south down the Oregon coast, I set this as our starting point because I just had to show this to my mom. As I knew she would be, she was in awe of this view!
All Malia’s Miles Columbia River Gorge pages: (some coming soon)
Mosier Twin Tunnels ♦ Memaloose State Park ♦ Hood River ♦ The Dalles