Last April I went hiking with Meghan Sinnott and four-legged friends, Maddy and Journey, up Coyote Wall at the eastern end of the Columbia River Gorge in Washington. Overall, I can say that I always love taking this family-friendly and dog-friendly hike, but do watch for poison oak and for ticks.
The outing offered me a great chance to try out my newly purchased Velvet 56 lens from Portland's own Lens Baby; the lens can do some really fun "velvety" bokah tricks (particularly along the frame edges) and looks nice whether you're shooting landscapes, portraits, or macros.
To get to Coyote Wall, stop along Washington Highway 14 at Coyote Wall Trailhead at Straights Point. We took the eastern trail, called the Labyrinth, but there are a couple other options, all of which begin along the old highway, which had to be abandoned after rockslides. The hike moves upwards slow and steady through switchbacks, mostly in open, high desert grass fields, but occasionally beside a creek with oases of oak trees (with sadly much poison oak as well!) and lovely little waterfalls. No matter which trail you take, you will find yourself at many nice viewpoints of the Columbia rolling its way towards you from the Dalles.
And after the hike that day, the cool spring morning air had grown blazing hot; so we stopped for a while along the Columbia at Hood River, Oregon. Always worth stopping at Hood River!