Oregon Natural Wonders, Nature December 14, 2018
You’re Not An Official Oregonian Until You’ve Climbed To The Top Of This Historic Tower
Astoria is one of the Oregon coast’s loveliest cities, and a popular spot for a weekend getaway. It’s also home to the Astoria Column, and if you’ve never climbed it, you’ll want to visit asap.
The Astoria Column is the crown jewel of a series of monuments that stretch from St. Paul, Minnesota, all the way to Astoria. The monuments were created to celebrate American achievement and westward expansion.
The column is 125 feet tall and was dedicated on July 22, 1926 - even though the artwork wasn't completely finished. No matter! More than 8,000 people still showed up for the dedication of this unique landmark.
Artist Attilio Pusterla designed the artwork that wraps around the column. Each scene depicts a part of western U.S. history, including the Lewis & Clark expedition, the discovery of the Columbia River, and the arrival of the Tonquin, the ship that left New York City in 1810 and reached the Columbia River in the spring of 1811.
The Astoria Column received a $1 million renovation in 2015. Because of its location, the column is subjected to gale-force winds that affect both the structure of the column and its artwork. Workers repaired structural damage and painstakingly restored the murals.
When you visit the column, you'll want to climb to the top. The spiral staircase inside the column contains 164 steps. It's certainly a workout, but well worth your effort.
If you're afraid of heights, don't look down! Instead...
...look at the scenic vista spread out before you. From up here, you'll have stunning views of the Columbia River, the town of Astoria, the Astoria-Megler Bridge, and the ocean.
Because the tower was built on Coxcomb Hill, you'll enjoy views from more than 600 feet above sea level.
Bring some binoculars or a few quarters to the top so you can get an eagle's eye view.
The other thing you might want to bring with you on your journey to the top of Astoria Column? A balsa wood glider!
Pick one up in the gift shop for just $1, then throw it from the top of the column and watch it make its way to the ground below.
You'll find the Astoria Column at 1 Coxcomb Dr, Astoria, OR 97103. It's open to visitors daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m..
Learn more about this historic column on the
Astoria Column website, and check out more photos of the column on its Facebook page.
While you’re in Astoria, you’ll certainly want to grab an order of
the world’s best fish and chips from this humble little fishing boat, and take a tour through town on this waterfront trolley.
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Address: 1 Coxcomb Dr, Astoria, OR 97103