Fall into Portland—Autumn Beckons
The days grow shorter and wetter, and the Portland playlist just moves inside and doesn't miss a beat. Keep the rain gear handy because there's plenty to do around town while dodging the raindrops.

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Lost in Space

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Perched on a not-so-lonely nude beach on the northern end of Sauvie Island is an enigma. Well above waterline lies a 30-foot orb that piques the imagination and challenges explanation. The "spaceship" origin is not interstellar but certainly presents itself as other-worldly. The craft is actually a ferro cement experimental boat built around 1970 just upriver. It was designed as a self-righting sailboat and carried a local family on adventures for a couple decades before it got away. Now covered in moss and graffiti, it sits as a testament to Oregon innovation and exploration.

To do some of your own exploring of this mysterious craft, take Reeder Rd out to where the pavement ends at a spot called Collins Beach, aka the nude beach. (Yes, if you venture out in summer, you will see naked people.) There's a parking area (permit required) and trails down to the beach. Sitting up in the trees, just above the sand, sits the stripped-out hulk of a dream. The tri-hulled beast looks more like a lifeboat than a spaceship, but alien nonetheless. Be careful climbing around if you decide to explore inside. The rusting steel framework is losing its cement skin in places and can be dangerous. Cycling to the site is a great way to spend an afternoon on the island and get a great workout in the process.

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by Jay Rymeski
AFAR Local Expert
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