Northwest Mustangs and Classic Fords met in the parking lot of the Troutdale Outlet Mall, along with members of the Mustang Wranglers and Mustangs Unlimited car clubs. It was very wet and windy, probably not the best day to be out driving in a long line of Mustangs going up the gorge!
The formation of Mustangs was 18 strong; good northwest brave souls that were not afraid of the rain. NWMCF's had the best showing of the cars for the three clubs present, representing with 7 of the 18 vehicles. We all braved the heavy rain and headed up the gorge to our first stop at the Bonneville Dam and Fish Hatchery. While there, we got to see the Salmon, Trout and Sturgeon ponds, which are always impressive. Some of us headed off for the hot coffee and the gift shop. We then continued up the gorge to Hood River for our next stop at Rasmussen's Orchard where we were greeted with some fanfare. We were parked in the back by the Pumpkin Patch and were greeted by all of the other visitors to the Orchard. The owners brought us some of the best Apple Cider that I have tasted in a long time. We walked around and talked to people about our cars and we noticed that some families were using our Mustangs as a back drop for their "holiday photos" with family. Many of us came away from Rasmussen's with some great looking fresh fruit, vegetables and not to forget, pumpkins. We had a good chance to get a group photo of the NWMCF members with a cool wagon behind us.
At this point the club broke off from the main group and headed to lunch at the Skamania Lodge in Stevenson. We said our goodbyes to the Wranglers and thanked them for putting this very fun event on once again and to look for us again next year. We all crossed the bridge over the Columbia River at Hood River and drove the Washington side back to the Skamania Lodge. We all sat together in their wonderful restaurant and had a great lunch, enjoying Pulled Pork Sliders, Hot Soup of the Day and of course some great beer from the local Walking Man Brewpub. With our stomachs full, we took some time to walk around the lodge and enjoy some free Starbucks coffee.
As I was driving home, I thought to myself what a wonderful group of people we have and how I enjoyed the day immensely. A car club can be so much more than just sitting in a hot parking lot and wondering if or who will win a trophy. Events like this are just the tip of the iceberg of what is possible when you have a good group of people who enjoy getting together and having fun. Thanks for making a wet day, bright and sunny!