Anybody commute in "The Gorge"????

  1. I'll be re-locating to Hood River and my sister-in-law is telling me hwy 84 is so bad in winter that people slide out all the time and are stranded in the snow. She then said that since I'll be commuting to Portland I should bring a shovel, water, extra food, and my sleeping bag for the times I'll be stuck in the snow. Now if things were that bad I would assume people would not be commuting to Portland at all, however, I know that the Hood River/Portland commute is a daily reality for some people. So how bad is it....really? Thanks -Lance
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  2. 6 Comments

  3. by   KristiePDX
    I have never lived in hood river. I used to live in troudale for several years. EVERY YEAR I 84 is closed down for bad weather. I lived in the city that that they would shut down the freeway at. We would get LOTS of truckers waiting it out there. The freeway would be closed for 2-3 weeks a year somtimes more. Not usually more than a week at a time.
    The problem is not the snow, you can still navigate in snow. The problem is snow encased in freezing rain/ice. Cold central air from canada whippes down the gorge with 75+ mph wind gusts brining the wind chill down to -25. Rain coming from the west instantly freezes encasing everything. The East wind comes every year never fails. The cold air sinks to lower elevation and the gorge is a natural depression in the earth.

    I love the gorge. I would move out there if I found the right place to live and a good job in hood river. I absolutley love it out there. When I go for drives in my car, hood river is often my destination because I feel most centered out there. Not to mention that it is one of the most beautiful places on earth. I envy that you have the opportunity to live out there.

    The advice you were given is good. I would encourage the same. You need to buy a good colombia sportswear parka with inner liner, and some isotoner like gloves you can double up or other high quality gloves. Maybe some of those warm inserts you can put in your gloves and shoes. It is a good idea to keep warm arctic survival gear in your trunk.
  4. by   medsurgnights
    A lot of people do commute from the gorge, but it does usually close down at least once a year d/t the freezing rain. We have all wheel drive cars and have never had a problem driving through it for recreation when it is open. It is beautiful out there, and as far as I know, not as expensive to live in as PDX.
  5. by   ankendia
    My mother in law was killed on the gorge trying to travel to a client (she was a lawyer) during winter. She lost control on the ice in heavy wind and slid into an oncoming semi. BE CAREFUL
  6. by   mariedoreen
    I lived in The Dalles for 11 years. I would not want to have to commute I-84 in the winter time. The concern is of course the ice, but the snow's no picnic either. You would have to worry about this every winter. If you're an RN looking for a good hospital position, consider Mid-Columbia Medical Center in The Dalles. It's an easier commute and an awesome facility to work for.
  7. by   mariedoreen
    Quote from ankendia
    My mother in law was killed on the gorge trying to travel to a client (she was a lawyer) during winter. She lost control on the ice in heavy wind and slid into an oncoming semi. BE CAREFUL
    Head-on collisions are fairly impossible on I-84. East and West lanes are separated by concrete dividers. Am I reading your post correctly?
  8. by   ankendia
    I am not sure exactly where she was killed on the gorge, it was close to 14 years ago, and I had just moved from California to Eugene and had never been to the northern part of the state. Maybe you can tell me where it was possible for her to cross over the center and hit a semi. I know it was on a two lane high way that ran parallel to the border. Was there a concrete divider back then?

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