Memaloose State Park

Memaloose State Park is a virtual oasis of beauty in the hottest part of the Columbia River Gorge, 11 miles west of The Dalles off Interstate 84. Temperatures can top 110 F on a summer day, but Memaloose always manages to provide cool comfort, lush green grass and shade thanks to the tall maples and willows that loom large in the park. The sound of pulsating sprinklers provides a melodic nighttime rhythm to the counterpoint of chirping crickets and lonesome train whistles.

On summer nights, families select prime viewing spots on the cool grass and open meadows around the campground and observe the nightly celestial performances of shooting stars, wandering satellites and far-away galaxies.

Memaloose Island, visible from this point, was once an important Native American burial ground for Mid-Columbia Tribes. The dead were wrapped in skins or blankets and often placed in a sitting position, sheltered by grave houses of poles, slabs and bark. Before water rising above Bonneville Dam reduced the original four-acre island to about half an acre, Native remains were removed for reburial elsewhere. The monument marks the grave of Victor Trevitt, a pioneer printer who moved to The Dalles in 1854. A member of the first State Legislature and a state senator from 1866-74, he was buried in 1883, according to his wish, on the Native burial ground.

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National Geographic