This is the first stopping point for visitors traveling the old Columbia River Highway into the Columbia River Gorge. The viewpoint was saved from development by the Portland Women’s Forum. It is a beautiful place to photograph the Gorge.
Portland Women’s Forum is a group that has been active in the Columbia River Gorge since 1946. The founding members were responsible for recognizing that this viewpoint was unique and should be saved. The women had teas, sales and raised the funds to buy the viewpoint and eventually
gifted the property to the Oregon Parks & Recreation Department.
The viewpoint was originally named Chanticleer Point by Mr. & Mrs. A. R. Morgan who purchased the property in 1912 and built an inn on the point. They called their popular inn “Chanticleer” after the rooster in the story, “Reynard the Fox.” The area took on the name of the inn
and is still known by some as Chanticleer Point.
Early train travelers could take a shuttle and brave a winding road from the base of the cliff to the inn. Portions of that road still exist. The upper end of it can be accessed only by hikers from the western side of the parking lot. Several vistas are available for those taking the time to walk the existing portion of the road which is passable for eight tenths of a mile from the park. The Chanticleer Inn eventually burned.
There are two interpretive signs at this location: one describes this view and the vision of Sam Hill and Samuel Lancaster to create the Historic Columbia River Highway; the other describes the ice age floods that created this landscape. A memorial to Sam Hill is located on a large rock adjacent to the HCRH. There are four bronze plaques on this memorial. (Information source: Portland Women’s Forum Website)
The viewpoint is open 24/7.