Sign says “no,” but hot weather says that sign is … all wet. What could a dip in Overlook Park falls hurt, if you didn’t drink the water?
Hate the heat? Why might that be? Remember December, when you were craving a bit of warmth? Well, here it is. Quit your griping, and get your arms around the joy of basting. Here’s our Top 10 ways to engage hot weather — with a little joie de sizzle.
1. What SUP, Doc? Uh, renting a standup paddleboard from Big Winds or Windance, Hood River’s two biggest gear shops. Big Winds offers rates ranging from $20 for an hour, to $69 for the entire day. Windance just does daily rentals, at $40.
2. Cool your nether regions by standing over the fountain in the courtyard at Doppio.
3. Get an iced coffee while you’re at Doppio. Or at Dog River. Or at Ground. Although you might want to do decaf, because, in our humble opinion, there’s something weird about drinking a cold beverage designed to boost your energy and activity, which on a hot day can only make you hotter, not cooler, and get you thinking about drinking an … iced coffee?
4. Uh-uh. Beer. In the shade. Outside. Let the heat wash over you, while you wash down a cold sudsy one. It can get a little busy on the sidewalk out front of Double Mountain (now selling beer in bottles, too), so don’t forget the decks at Full Sail Brewing, Everybody’s Brewing in White Salmon. Our favorite alternative sipping scene is up at Volcanic Bottle Shoppe. Sample the guest taps, and sit outside on its quiet patio, away from traffic.
Aerial view of Waterfront Park with the Halyard Building in the background. The Halyard is home to the new Pfriem Family Brewers tasting room.
5. Hood River Waterfront Park. Take Second Street (Exit 63 from I-84) north toward the Columbia River. When Second T’s into Portway, turn left. Go about 200 yards and look for the park on your right. Great playground equipment for the kids. But in the heat, you’ll want to head down to the sandy-bottomed, protected swimming lagoon. The water temp in the Columbia is currently 71 degrees at Bonnville Dam, about 23 miles west of Hood River.
6. Go to the pool. Seriously. In our outdoor-nutty city, the Hood River Aquatic Center is still cool. Great people watching. Perfect for kids. Staffed with lifeguards. Deep and shallow. It’s all here, and cooler than air temp.
7. Mike’s Ice Cream. A summer institution in Hood River, Mike’s features frozen treats from Prince Puckler’s Gourmet Ice Cream of Eugene.
8. Did someone say Eugene? Home of the Oregon Ducks? This part of North America’s favorite football team? And how (ahem) cool it will be when they finally win a national championship? The dream is chilling us out.
9. Grab a blanket and find a shady spot on the lawn of Jackson Park. It’s a cool zone in the heart of the city. Do it mid-day. Don’t go on Thursday night, unless you’re fine with crowds and music and food vendors and lots of activity. The park is just part of the city’s weekly Families in the Park event, now paired up with the Gorge Grown Farmer’s Market in a street fair.
10. Get your wet T-shirt on by sitting in the waterfall at Overlook Park, where Second Street T’s into State Street one block south of Oak in downtown. And think about how cool it will be on Friday, Dec. 7, when the city lights its Christmas tree.