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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Abandoned Highway

This abandoned road is just barely visible from I-84 in the Columbia River Gorge. You can just catch tantalizing glimpses of it as you speed around the curves near Arlington. Years ago, I impulsively decided to stop and take a look. It required circling back around and finding a good place to stop along the freeway (there aren't really any good places to stop).

It appears to be part of the old highway system that was used before I-84 was built, and it has a very interesting ambiance.

abandoned highway
abandoned highway, oregon

I was never very happy with the images from that day. The light and time of day was wrong, and I was worried about getting a ticket from the Highway Patrol. This was not conducive to good image making.

Not long ago, I visited the same area again. Again, the light was wrong. But I still think the location is really interesting visually.

abandoned highway
overgrown, abandoned highway.

abandoned highway
abandoned road

old highway
abandoned highway

The prairie grass and brush are slowly taking over the old asphalt road. It might be many more decades before it is completely covered.


Anonymous said...

Very nice - I know the spot. It's old U.S. Highway 30 as designated in 1926. Before that it would have been the eastern end of the Columbia River Highway. I've got late 1890s and late 1930s photos of Arlington looking west with the old alightment coming in at the foot of the bluff before the construction of the dams. The stretch was probably abandoned in the late 1940s or early 50s and replaced with a two lane Super 2 up hill on a new alignment that eventually became one side of I-84. There's another stretch of the orginal road at the foot of bluff off of Exit 131 of I-84 from the high alignment between Arlington on the east and the Blaylock Canyon interchange on the west, but you can only get off the freeway heading eastbound. Anyway, thanks for the pics - I'm adding a couple to my screen saver. dh

OregonWild said...


Thanks for all the great info. I want to make a trip just to photograph this stretch of highway - hopefully i can find the time.



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Portland, Oregon, United States
Husband, Father, Student Of Natural History, Photographer