Eagle Creek Overlook

Eagle Creek Overlook

Eagle Creek Overlook is about a mile and a half east of the Toothrock Trailhead, and is about 41 miles east of Portland. It was originally a site built by the Civilian Conservation Corps in the 1930’s so that tourists traveling along the scenic Columbia River Gorge Highway could watch the construction of Bonneville Dam.

Bonneville Dam - WPA

New Bonneville Dam Locks

This view is of the “new” locks at Bonneville Dam. The original section can’t be seen from where this history sign is located.

<img src="http://PNWPhotoBlog.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/11/2012/07/Eagle-Creek-Overlook-1024×768.jpg" alt="Eagle Creek Overlook History Sign" title="Eagle Creek Overlook History Sign" width="1024" height="768" class="aligncenter size-large wp-image-1687" /

“During the Great Depress, the CCC (Civilian Conservation Corps,) put young men to work and left a lasting legacy throughout the United States. Eagle Creek Overlook, located up the hill, was built in 1937 to accommodate sightseers watching construction of the Bonneville Dam.

“The Dam and CC project were efforts to revive a depressed economy. But more than just an employment program, the CCC came to mean a style of architecture and a level of craftsmanship. The CCC’s legacy can be seen throughout the Columbia River Gorge. Look for rustic style CCC shelters and buildings made of peeled logs, board and batten siding, cedar shake roofs, and native stones.”

The actual building mentioned is up to the right on the hill, but below is an example of a restroom built in the CCC’s distinct style.

Eagle Creek Restroom

Near the overlook is a Fish Hatchery. Remnants of the fish ladder can still be seen. The hatchery dates from 1956 and typically coho salmon, and winter steelhead. It has also raised Chinook Salmon for release in the past.

<img src="http://PNWPhotoBlog.com/wp-content/uploads/sites/11/2012/07/Eagle-Fern-Fish-Ladder-1024×768.jpg" alt="Eagle Creek Fish Hatchery Ladder" title="Eagle Creek Fish Hatchery Ladder" width="1024" height="768" class="aligncenter size-large wp-image-1690" /

In addition to the group campground near the overlook, there is another campground past the fish hatchery, which is the first and oldest Forest Service Campground ever built, having been built in 1915.

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