12 thoughts on “Willamette River, 1966

  1. This appears to have been taken across from Elk Rock on Riverside Drive looking southeast. The large across the river building is currently Willamette View Retirement Home.

  2. Totally agree, looking upriver, southeast. But, just to avoid confusion, Elk Rock is the cliff where the photo was taken, versus Elk Rock Island which is just out of view to the left, and at this lower river level (in both pics) the island’s land bridge is exposed.

  3. I don’t know about you, but whenever I pass that view above Elk Rock or Elk Rock Island, by car or boat, on 43 or 99e, I always imagine the indigenous people like the Walmut or Clackamas tribes, utilizing this place to harvest elk, and I wonder how exactly they did it. How would they corral and spook the elk off the cliff? Did the elk get injured or die from hitting the cliff wall, ground, or water? Were they still alive or injured? Were other natives down below, perhaps in massive canoes, spearing and snaring the carcasses? Were there others on shore to assist or process the kill, or did they come just to see the spectacle? It must have been a an amazing scene full of adrenaline, excitement, danger, thrill and celebration. If anyone has any more details on how the process worked, I would love to learn more about it!

    And while I’m at it, I just want to send an immense thank you to all the people that contribute their incredible research, information, imaginations, memories, honest opinions, questions or just good old plain positivity, fun, and humor. All of it makes VP a wonderful resource. If you are one of those kind contributors…thank you.

  4. Elk Rock is an amazing spot. My wife and I used to hike out on Elk Rock Island quite often when weather conditions were dry.
    10,000 years ago, there was a very large volcano here, and Elk Rock island is what is left of the magma chamber.
    I’ve encountered tour boats running through this area on hikes and I’m always amazed at how easily they seem to move through here.

  5. The Kalapuya tribe hunters herded the elk and drove them over the cliff, breaking their legs and rendering them immobile. Tribe members waiting below closed in with spears and bows to finish the kills. Sometimes it was hand to hoof combat with knives. The Kalapuya called the elk cliff jumps “pishkun”, which loosely translates as “deep blood kettle”. This type of hunting was a communal event that occurred as early as 12,000 years ago and lasted until at least 1500, around the time of the introduction of horses. They believed that if any elk escaped these killings then the rest of the elk would learn to avoid humans, which would make hunting even harder, therefore there was no mercy shown to any elk. Above Elk Rock, there were driving lanes formed that would funnel the elk towards the cliff. Sometimes tribe members would dress up like elk or wolves to aid in herding the animals.
    Kalapuya depended on the elk for their survival. Every part of the animal could be used in some way: hides for clothes and shelter, bones for tools, sinews for bowstrings, and laces. Hooves could be ground for glue, and the brains could be used in the tanning process for the hides. The extra meat was preserved as pemmican.

  6. This image is of the Pacific Inland Navigation tug “Inland Chief” which is pushing and the Willamette Tug and Barge’s tug “Willamette Chief “ which is pulling. They are inbound at Elk Rock with a Sea Span limestone barge for Oregon City. These barge’s and their load’s originate out of Canada and were a weekly run to Oregon City until the early 1980’s, at which time the destination of these barges changed to the Rivergate Industrial District. The limestone run continues to this day. The loaded weight of these Sea Span loads varied anywhere from 10,000 to 14,000 tons.

  7. Chris B, interesting info. What was the limestone used for in Oregon City? I am thinking the destination could have also been the cement factory in Lake Oswego that operated until the early ’80’s?? Limestone is a major ingredient of cement.

  8. Correction, the tug out front on towline is the Willamette Tug and Barge tug “Willamette Navigator” a single screw YTL .

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