I met Brenda Edin through Twitter and after researching several incredible Oregon adventures at www.OregonAdventurist.com I was in awe at the quality of her adventure website. Oregon Adventurist is a free reader-driven weekly web magazine, highlighting the best in Oregon’s lifestyle of adventure and exploration. The insider format offers unsolicited hints, highlights, recommendations and off-the-beaten track secrets from its readers and staff alike. Brenda is keen on building a community of folks that share her love of travel and exploration throughout the northwest. Enjoy her interview and a few Oregon secrets!
How and where were you introduced to the outdoors?
Raised in Minnesota, my brother and I spent a good deal of our growing up years out on the lake fishing and riding bikes through the countryside. We also did a lot of camping and road tripping with my family. Adventure and exploration has always been core for me, but it wasn’t until moving to Oregon in the late 90’s that I discovered the joy of hiking. My first hike was actually on the drive into the state. After hours and hours of being in the car, we cut off I-84 onto the Historic Columbia River Highway and stopped at the first trailhead we saw – Oneonta Gorge. It’s still one of my favorite treks
What has been your favourite outdoor recreations area?
The Pacific Northwest at-large is such a phenomenal part of the world that it’s hard to narrow it down to just one area. For camping and hiking, I’m a huge fan of the Columbia River Gorge. I also enjoy the high desert in Central Oregon, but to be fair, I can’t really think of an area in Oregon that DOESN’T offer spectacular outdoor adventure. We’ve got ocean, rivers, mountains, deserts, valleys – the diversity and recreational opportunity is pretty vast.
Have you ever experienced a wilderness medical emergency or been lost in the wilderness?
I’ve never been lost or had a wilderness medical emergency, but I have certainly overextended myself by underestimating the length of a trail or the weather conditions. When I was new to the area I had friends come for a visit and wanted to show off the panoramic view from Larch Mountain. They arrived in November. I had previously taken the hike in June. Not realizing that the elevation meant snow cover that time of year, we didn’t plan for trekking in 2 feet of snow or the extra energy and time required to reach the viewpoint. Nothing critical, but we ended up walking down the trail in the dark, underdressed, miserably cold and incredibly hungry. Now I always pack a Camelback with water, a snack and an emergency blanket and we’ve outfitted our children with the same gear. My son has also taken on the responsibility of trail medic. In addition to his own gear, he packs a first aid kit and implements skills he’s learned from my partner, a longtime emergency medicine professional, whenever the need arises.
Can you share any unique encounters with wild animals?
This past summer we were out on a trek near Nehalem Bay on the Oregon coast and came across a family of three deer. Separated only by some tall grass, the deer were only 7-8 feet from us. My entire family, along with the deer, were all struck silent staring at each other perfectly frozen for what seemed to be an eternity. Being city folks, having that kind of encounter with wild animals is magical and highly memorable. It was a moment where time stood still and we made a true connection with Nature.
What is your favourite outdoor website?
I love the reader-submitted adventures of our website OregonAdventurist.com Two of my personal, regular go-to sites for hiking include http://www.gorgefriends.org andhttp://www.oregonstateparks.org. Oregon State Parks just came out with a stellar map of the Oregon Coast Trails http://www.oregon.gov/OPRD/PARKS/OCT_main.shtml
What is your favourite outdoor hiking gear store?
I’m partial to supporting local culture and economy so my favorites are Oregon-based companies. Because we outfit an entire family for our outdoor adventures, I like Columbia, Keen and Kleen Kanteen. They’ve got rugged, high quality gear that can not only stand up to the Elements, it can handle the wear and tear of active kids.
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