One perfect day biking in The Dalles, OR

Visit this lesser-known town for abundant sunshine, wine, and an exciting bike trail

Salmon Cyclery

Salmon Cyclery is the place to go for bike rentals, trail maps, spare tubes, and snacks.

John Clark

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Sunshine Mill
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Columbia Gorge Discovery Center
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ANZAC Tea Parlour
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Why go now: Unlike the coast, this town gets loads of sun in May--and a new wine bar and bike trail give you a reason to stick around.

Vitamin D fix: Portland averages 2 to 3 inches of rain this month; the Dalles gets half an inch.

Lay of the land: It's 84 miles east of Portland on the Columbia River.

Say it like a local: The Dalles rhymes with "pals." Forget the "the," and it's a dead giveaway you're from out of town.

Who lives here: Winemakers, cowboys, and triathletes-in-training.

Ticket to ride: The nearly complete Dalles Riverfront Trail is boosting the area's bike cred.

If you don't have your own wheels: The closest rental is at Discover Bicycles (from $25/day; 210 State St.; 541/386-4820) in Hood River, about 20 minutes away.

Architecture fans will love: Streets chockablock with restored Queen Anne homes.

Make a night of it: Order the prime rib and listen to old-timey piano music at the Baldwin Saloon ($$; closed Sun; 205 Court St.; 541/296-5666).

Coolest place to taste wine: What used to be a flour mill with a towering grain silo is now the place for wines from local stars Quenett Winery and Copa Di Vino--and maybe a game of bocce or two. Sunshine Mill has turned a cavernous 100-year-old factory into one of the most dramatic places to taste Oregon grapes. Grab a glass of crisp Pinot Gris, then head out to the patio, where you can work on your bocce toss. $5 tasting; 901 E. Second St.; 541/298-8900.

 

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