As spring blooms along the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area, it brings the return of the Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler from her winter home in Portland. Operated by Portland Spirit Cruises & Events, this authentic 1800s style Sternwheeler vessel has been cruising the Gorge through Cascade Locks, Oregon, for the past 34 years. With a history and personality as rich as the river she cruises on, The Sternwheeler is composed of 3 decks and holds up to 499 passengers. From May to October the Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler provides cruises for families, tourists and adventurers alike.
Considered an essential part of the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area experience, a sightseeing cruise aboard the Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler is a great way to see the river up close and personal. Passengers are given the choice of a one hour cruise following the East or West Loop or they can choose to take the two hour sightseeing trip, which includes both the East and West Loop for only a few dollars more. Some of the highlights of the East Loop include the Bridge of the Gods, Bonneville Dam, and the North American fishing platforms. Along the West Loop one will see Wind Mountain and the Skamania Lodge & Interpretive Center, as well as groups of kiteboarders and windsurfers from all around the area. Passengers can purchase food at the Locks Waterfront Grill to bring aboard the one or two hour sightseeing cruise.
The Sunset Dinner Cruise from 6:00-8:00 p.m. features fresh, farm-to-table, Pacific Northwest cuisine. Take in the sights of the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area while dining on an incredible meal prepared in the on-board galley. During the dinner cruise take some time to visit the rest of the vessel, which features photos and more telling the history of the Sternwheeler and the Columbia River Gorge. As you cruise along, the Captain provides live narration of the sights and history that is equally educational and entertaining.
Sunday Brunch is a two hour cruise featuring a bountiful Northwest buffet with a variety of breakfast foods, fresh fruits and cheeses, juice and champagne or sparkling cider.
The Landmarks of the Gorge cruise is perfect for those wanting to take their time and really make an adventure out of their trip to the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area. This five hour cruise includes a continental breakfast and lunch buffet. The Captain provides live narration as the Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler glides past natural and historic landmarks such as the Bridge of the Gods, Beacon Rock and the Native American fishing platforms. A highlight of the cruise―and what is for many a once-in-a-lifetime experience―is when the majestic Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler passes through the Bonneville Locks and Dam.
Whether one is looking for a fine dining cruise, a family sightseeing trip, or a day long Columbia River Gorge adventure, the Columbia Gorge Sternwheeler is the perfect way to create lasting memories of the Columbia River Gorge Scenic Area.