Our second day in the beautiful autumnal forests of the Columbia River Gorge began in the small city of The Dalles, where we boarded our coaches for a morning’s scenic drive on the old two-lane highway that winds along the cliffs on Oregon’s side of the river. We stopped for a delightful hike through the colorful oaks and maples along the old route of the highway (now closed to motorized traffic) and then drove to the Rowena Crest overlook for a fantastic view of the eastern end of the gorge. Our afternoon was spent cruising through the gorge, admiring the scenery from every new angle and enjoying our final lock passage through the Bonneville Dam. Then the pirates appeared!