The Oregon Trail

Continuing east on US-26, 60 miles from Portland, about 18 miles from the coast highway and a mile west of the hamlet of Elsie, the remarkable Camp 18 Logging Museum and Restaurant (503/755-1818 or 800/874-1810, daily) draws travelers for a variety of reasons. Some people come for the absolutely massive portions of good food, from the gigantic fresh-baked cinnamon rolls and quart jugs of coffee at breakfast to the steaks, chicken, and seafood served up at lunch and dinner. Others are drawn by the playful Paul Bunyan-esque scale of the place: The front door handle is a hefty old ax, the spacious dining room roof is held up by a single massive Douglas fir log—85 feet long, 8 feet thick, and weighing 50,000 pounds—and many of the tables are made from foot-thick planks of planed and polished wood.

The whole room is packed with an amazing collection of old logging gear, but best of all is the setting, overlooking a babbling brook, with dozens of bird-feeders attracting flocks of finches and other colorful songbirds. Outside, an extensive museum in the parking lot lets visitors examine more old logging equipment to get a feel for a bygone era of misery whips, 20-foot handsaws, and steam donkeys. (Surprise, surprise: There’s also a good gift shop.)