As a last minute trip, we decided to come down to Oregon for some camping at Viento State Park. The park is old, but beautiful. The campground sits in a beautiful forest of trees that spills out onto the windy shores of the Columbia River. Gorgeous!
I didn't like staying there.
The reason is because the beautiful forest is sandwiched between busy Intersate 84 (which my kids had fun playing under),...
... and an active train track. And by active, I mean blaring its horn as it went by the campground every hour or so. We made the best of it by experimenting with pennies on the track.
Lots of pennies because lots of trains.
We also happened to have a little trouble with forest fire smoke. Our poor forests are burning up this summer!!! But the smoke didn't really affect our stay. The noise, however, was beyond what we could handle! It was really a bummer! The location is fantastic -- access to the Columbia River and so close to so many amazing sights -- it's just too bad!
I would recommend using Viento State Park for day use only. Bring your wind/water gear and have fun on the river for the day! Unless you're a heavy sleeper, then by all means, stay the night.
Fees: $17-$22/night camping, $5 day use parking
What to bring: paddle boards, kite surfing gear, windsurfing gear, EARPLUGS IF STAYING THE NIGHT
Sights nearby: Historic Columbia River Highway State Trail, Bridge of the Gods, Historic Columbia River Highway Scenic Byway, Multnomah Falls