The Dalles

"A great place to start" If you're new to the high winds of the Gorge you'll find The Dalles Riverfront Park a great place to begin your windsurfing adventure. The city of The Dalles has really gotten behind the sport of windsurfing. It shows in the attention, care and thoughtful planning behind the development of this site. The Dalles Riverfront Park is one of the nicest family/beginner sites in the Gorge; there's plenty of parking, a beautiful park with excellent grass for rigging, playground equipment for the kids, barbecues, food concessions and even an outdoor shower, reminiscent of the beaches of Hawaii. There is even a specially designed pond in the center of the Park that waterstarters and micro-shredders can practice in. Perfect.

RIG & LAUNCH A nice, big grass rigging area is right next to the main parking area. A short walk to the sandy beach and launch is your biggest challenge. Just remember, the main park is closed from November to May 28th (Memorial Day) for wildlife sanctuary purposes, but access is permitted off the small beach east of the boat ramp. Do not park or leave your equipment on the boat ramp.

WIND Expect 50 to 60 conditions. The Dalles can get bigger days, but it is generally more moderate. Best in spring and summer, the wind blows somewhat on shore, stopping beginners from getting blown too far from the launch or into the main channel.

WATER There is protection from the current, swell and wind afforded by the point extending out from the launching areas. General sailing conditions offer good intermediate slalom and speed sailing with small swells in the main channel for chop hopping.

GETTING THERE 23 miles east of Hood River. Take exit #85 off of I-84. Turn north off the exit and follow the signs to Riverfront Park, next to the Dalles Boat Basin. There are plenty of parking places available either next to the main park or up above near the boat ramp.