Lewis and Clark's Columbia River
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Lewis & Clark's Columbia River - "200 Years Later"
"Cook and Cook Hill, Washington"
Includes ... Cook ... Cook Hill ... Cook-Underwood Road ...
Image, 2005, Cook, Washington, from Viento State Park, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Cook, Washington, as seen from Viento State Park, Oregon. Image taken September 25, 2005.


Cook ...
The small community of Cook, Washington, is located just west (downstream) of Drano Lake and the mouth of the Little White Salmon River, at Columbia River Mile (RM) 161. Upstream are the Washington communities of Hood and Underwood, and downstream lies Dog Creek, Dog Mountain, and the old Washington community of Collins. A good view of Cook can be had from across the river at Viento State Park.

Early Cook ...
Cook was named for Charles A. Cook, who homesteaded the ground on which the town was built. At one time Cook was a busy sternwheel landing spot.

The U.S. Bureau of Land Management's General Land Office (GLO) Records website (2012) shows a Charles A. Cook being granted title to 160 acres of T3N R9E on December 22, 1896 (1862 homestead entry original).


Cook Hill ...
Cook Hill borders the western side of Drano Lake and rises above the town of Cook. The hill separates the Little White Salmon River from the Columbia River.

Image, 2003, Cook Hill from Drano Lake, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Cook Hill, as seen from Drano Lake, Washington. Image taken October 25, 2003.
Image, 2005, Cook Hill, Washington, from Viento State Park, Oregon, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Cook Hill, as seen from Viento State Park, Oregon. Image taken September 25, 2005.


Cook-Underwood Road ...
The Cook-Underwood Road traverses nearly 15 miles along the slopes of the Columbia River Gorge, north of Washington Highway 14, and stretches from Cook, on the west bank of the Little White Salmon River (RM 161.5), to Underwood, on the west bank of the White Salmon River (RM 168.5).
[More]

Image, 2013, Old house on Cook-Underwood Road, Washington, click to enlarge
Click image to enlarge
Old house on Cook-Underwood Road, Washington, near Cook. Image taken March 18, 2013.


From the Journals of Lewis and Clark ...

Clark, October 29, 1805 ...
A cloudy morning wind from the West but not hard, we Set out at day light [from their camp on Rocky Island at Crates Point], and proceeded on about five miles Came too on the Stard. Side at a village of 7 houses built in the Same form and materials of those above, here we found the Chief we had Seen at the long narrows [The Dalles] ...     they are hospitable and good humered Speak the Same language of the inhabitants of the last village, we call this the friendly village [vicinity of Dougs Beach]. ...     after brackfast we proceeded on, the mountains are high on each Side [high basalt cliffs of the Rowena Gap, with Rowena Crest on the south and the Chamberlain Lake area on the north], containing Scattering pine white oake & under groth, hill Sides Steep and rockey; at 4 miles lower we observed a Small river falling in with great rapidity on the Stard. Side [Klickitat River] below which is a village of 11 houses [today the town of Lyle is on the upstream side of the Klickitat], here we landed to Smoke a pipe with the nativs and examine the mouth of the river, which I found to be 60 yards wide rapid and deep, The inhabitants of the village are friendly and Chearfull; those people inform us also those at the last village that this little river is long and full of falls, no Salmon pass up it, it runs from N. N. E. that ten nations live on this river and its waters, on buries, and what game that Can kill with their Bow & arrows

we purchased 4 dogs and Set out- (this village is the of the Same nation of the one we last passed) and proceeded on The Countrey on each side begin to be thicker timbered with Pine and low white Oake; verry rockey and broken [passing Mayer State Park on the Oregon side]. passed three large rocks in The river the middle rock is large long and has Several Squar vaults on it. we call this rockey Island the Sepulchar [Memaloose Island] - The last river we passed we Shall Call the Cataract River [Klickitat River] from the number of falls which the Indians say is on it- passed 2 Lodges of Indians a Short distance below the Sepulchar Island [Memaloose Island] on the Stard. Side river wide, at 4 mile passed 2 houses on the Stard. Side, Six miles lower passed 4 houses above the mouth of a Small river 40 yards wide on the Lard. Side [Hood River]    a thick timbered bottom above & back of those houses; those are the first houses which we have Seen on the South Side of the Columbia River, (and the axess to those dificuelt) for fear of the approach of their common enemies the Snake Indians, passed 14 houses on the Std. Side Scattered on the bank- from the mouth of this little river which we shall Call Labeasche River [Hood River], the falls mountain [Mount Hood] is South and the top is covered with Snow.    one mile below pass the mouth of a large rapid Stream on the Stard. Side [White Salmon River], opposit to a large Sand bar [from Hood River], in this creek the Indians above take their fish, here we Saw Several canoes, which induced us to call this Canoe Creek [White Salmon River] it is 28 yards wide, about 4 miles lower and below the Sand bar [Hood River sandbar] is a butifull cascade falling over a rock of about 100 feet [Wah Gwin Gwin Falls, location of the Columbia Gorge Hotel],

[On the route map (Moulton, vol.1, map#78) a "C___ Spring" is shown on the north side of the river, today the location of Spring Creek and Spring Creek Fish Hatchery, with no mention of it in any text. On the south side, at the location of Wah Gwin Gwin Falls, only "Cascade" is labeled and "4 Houses of Indians".]

a Short distance lower passed 4 Indian houses on the Lard. Side in a timbered bottom, a fiew miles further we came too at 3 houses on Stard. Side, back of which is a pond [today the location of Drano Lake. The Little White Salmon River empties into Drano Lake.] in which I Saw Great numbers of Small Swan, Capt. Lewis and went into the houses of those people ...     Here the mountains are high on each Side, those to the Lard. Side has Some Snow on them at this time, more timber than above and of greater variety.





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*River Miles [RM] are approximate, in statute miles, and were determined from USGS topo maps, obtained from NOAA nautical charts, or obtained from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers website, 2003

Sources: Hitchman, R., 1985, Place Names of Washington, Washington State Historical Society; U.S. Bureau of Land Management website, 2012, General Land Office (GLO) Records;

All Lewis and Clark quotations from Gary Moulton editions of the Lewis and Clark Journals, University of Nebraska Press, all attempts have been made to type the quotations exactly as in the Moulton editions, however typing errors introduced by this web author cannot be ruled out; location interpretation from variety of sources, including this website author.
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March 2013