This past week I had the joy of partnering with Land Rover USA to go on a road trip around my home state of Oregon in search of the essence of autumn. As recent Land Rover owners ourselves, my wife and I had an amazing time exploring the beauty of the Pacific Northwest in the Discovery Sport and thought we’d share our adventure with you via photos.
The trip started down I-84 through the Columbia River Gorge. For those of you familiar with the area, you know that this is a very colorful place in the fall. As we wound along the Historic Columbia River Hwy, our breath was taken away with magnificent foliage around each and every turn.
We made pit stops for water falls such as Latourell Falls, the famous Multnomah Falls, and the lesser known Horsetail Falls.
Next, our journey brought us ascending to Mt Hood. It started raining hard but the drive was smooth and comfortable in the Discovery Sport and we saw the speckled hints of autumn on our way up toward the mountain.
At one point the rain stopped and the sun parted briefly through the clouds. Out of the corner of my eyes I noticed something I had never seen before on the way to Mt Hood—a little pond with a white walk bridge across the water. The glow of the sun created a reflection on the water that only seemed like it could be real in dreams! This was the result:
After we made it to the top of the mountain, we took in the views at Trillium Lake to the smell of fresh rain.
The second day of the journey found us racing toward central Oregon for some morning light. I could not believe the Land Rover brought us across this gorgeous fall reflection pool in Redmond, OR. It was so calm and we watched geese and otters search for their breakfast. It was perfect! I was surprised at how smoothly the SUV handled any and all off-road driving throughout this trip Just before this moment, I activated the Land Rover's "Terrain Response" for adapting to the drive surface to "Hill Descent Control", which was handy and I can't believe a car can do that! So cool!
Next, we went to Smith Rock State Park just in time to witness an other-worldly thunder storm taking place over the majestic rock structures. We stayed in the SUV to avoid the cold (and to avoid being struck by lightning : ). Unlike our other road trips, we were never antsy to get out of this SUV because of the abundance of leg room and cozy leather interior. Not to mention, there was better temperature control than I've found in any other vehicle. With all the control options, you can isolate the temperature dynamic for practically each seat in the car! We utilized this feature the most, because of the varying climates we encountered on our journey!
It seems like often times the weather just cannot make up it’s mind in Oregon, and sure enough, the storm passed in time for some fun light around the bright colors of Bend, OR. After getting a tip on where to find fall colors from a local friend, I went on a stroll through Drake Park, and this was the results!
On the third day, we searched for fall colors on our journey south to our final destination: Crater Lake. The colors were pretty along the drive as we saw more and more bright yellow aspens appearing the more central we got in Oregon. It made us so excited for the anticipation of the pay off: Crater Lake itself.
But what we found at Crater Lake was quite different from what we expected. The higher elevation of the lake had given way over night to an early Autumn snowfall (rare in Oregon), and as a result we were saddened to find the gate to the Crater Lake Park was closed due to the snow! It would’ve been a 20 mile hike round-trip through the snow, so we decided to pass.
However, nearby Diamond Lake was accessible and even though the goal of this trip was to find autumn colors, we couldn’t help but try out the Discovery Sport in the snow. It handled so wonderfully and we were delighted to find that the nearby Diamond Lake was open to explore.
After that, we headed back toward Bend to check out Mt. Bachelor in search of more fall colors…but guess what? We were all snowed out there as well! What lousy luck. (Although, I must admit the snow was beautiful in it’s own right…)
No need to worry though. As our journey concluded, and we finished the rest of the drive back home, we were greeted again with the dynamic autumnal colors of Oregon on the streets of Portland neighborhoods!
What an amazing trip. We took in so many amazing fall colors and sights that we will never forget. And we were so grateful that we took this trip in the Discovery Sport, it’s seriously such a great car! I was so impressed with how easily it handled the driving conditions of rain, ice, storms, and snow all in the same trip! We were so comfortable and surprised by great high-tech features such as automatic brights at night, and an amazing navigation system that made us forget our phones. But most of all, they look awesome. We highly recommend checking out one of these SUVs. Thank you Land Rover USA for making this trip possible and for giving us a window into the glory of autumn in the Pacific Northwest!