Follow the rugged Lewis and Clark Trail Aboard American Cruise Lines Queen of the West.
Soft adventure and breathtaking scenery. Add regional wine and local craft beer and I couldn’t resist. Without hesitation (and a four-day Amtrak train journey from Florida) I hopped aboard American Cruise Lines paddlewheeler, the Queen of the West in Portland, Oregon for a 7-night Columbia and Snake River cruise. First cruise for me on an American river.
The staff and crew were wonderful, the small paddlewheeler was charming and the scenery…astounding. I brushed up on a little Lewis and Clark history and learned so much more about the Pacific Northwest as we slowly cruised towards Idaho and the Snake River.
Here’s my photo tour of the Queen of the West, interspersed with snapshots of scenery that you have to experience to believe. I had no idea what to expect in this part of our country.
Queen of the West with and an ever-changing view from my window, along the Columbia River.
Typical double stateroom – the door leads to private balcony.
After the rain, in Stevenson, Washington.
The bow ramp in use somewhere in Oregon…still not sure where we were!
Who says all the beautiful sunsets are on the ocean?
Bulletin board with the day’s activities. Note: No karaoke or laser light shows.
Multnomah Falls, 611′ foot roaring waterfall, 30 miles east of Portland.
Queen of the West passengers at 3,800′ elevation, take in the view of Mt. Saint Helens.
One of my favorite things – regional food and drinks. Oregon specialties are sooo good!
Down-home entertainment included this one-man band banjo player. Toe-tapping fun for sure.
Sunset on the Columbia River.
Cozy private balcony. Great weather to sit outside and watch the shore.
Queen of the West’s very traditional and lovely dining room.
Salmon, salmon and more salmon…if you wanted it. All from the Pacific Northwest.
Beautiful dark wood bar…and my new friend, Joyce. She’s 92 and traveling solo.
Queen of the West Paddlewheel Lounge.
The Library. One of the best spots on the ship for wifi.
On the top deck, next to the enclosed Caliope Lounge.
There’s Joyce again, at the Oregon region cheese and preserves tasting.
The weather-proof Calliope Lounge and “Fitness Center.” I had the elliptical machine all to myself.
Yes, there’s even a putt-putt course.
Docked for the day. Notice the two horizontal smoke stacks? They can go up and down to fit under bridges.
Our Captain explains the workings of the wheelhouse and navigation on the river.
The Captain announced when we’d pass Mt. Hood so of course everyone was on deck with their cameras. The weather cooperated, too.
Boarding our jet boat for a day excursion on the Snake River.
As close as our jet boat could get to the petroglyph rock. The photo below is the close-up.
Close-up of the Buffalo Eddy petroglyph; dates back about 4,500 years.
Eventually all good things must end and so it was time to leave the Queen of the West and head north to Spokane, Washington and catch my Amtrak train home.
It was a fabulous and incredibly interesting cruise aboard the Queen of the West. And yes, I did sit in several of the rocking chairs.
For more information about this cruise on the Columbia River, visit: American Cruise Lines.
Disclosure: I was a guest of American Cruise Lines aboard the Queen of the West, but all opinions are my own.
Photo credit: Sherry Laskin