This is a town with a vibrant, high-rise downtown area that is less than three miles from the largest wilderness park inside any city in America. A comfortable, welcoming metropolis of one-and-a-half million people, offering every urban enticement and opportunity, crisscrossed by bike paths and excellent public transportation. Where it seems like a city ordinance that every block must have a coffeehouse and a great ethnic restaurant. Home of high-tech and low crime, a great local music scene and theatre scene, police on bikes and horses, tranquil Japanese and Chinese gardens, noisy downtown clubs, a floating dance floor, a plethora of bridges, and 30-pound salmon swimming past the city lights.
And we're in quite a state: go west through rolling farmland and deep green forest and soon you arrive at the Pacific Ocean and the clean, uncrowded beaches, the chilly but good wetsuit-clad surfing and kayaking of the Oregon coast. Travel out through the basalt cliffs and towering waterfalls of the world-famous Columbia River Gorge, where windsurfing and kiteboarding rule the waves. Go east through rising hills and climb to the winter ski country and summer hiking and mountain biking of 11,235-foot Mt. Hood and its national forest (Reed maintains a ski cabin here for its students). Down the far slope lie the high desert and bright sun of eastern Oregon. All of these places are less than two hours from Reed.