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u-pick recommendations and tips in Portland Metro area

Aside from frequent readings of Blueberries for Sal, any knowledge I might have regarding u-pick farms probably goes back to when I was a wee one, right about Sal's age. My friend Carol is our u-pick hero. She and her husband picked 85 pounds worth of strawberries last year. Eighty-five pounds!! Mark my words, this is the year my husband and I will do the same. Jam, dried strawberries, frozen berries, you name it. We are going to put up enough strawberries to last us through the winter. We hope to avoid meeting any bears out there, but other than that, we are ready! We have our game faces on. We're ready to rock!!

Only we don't know what to bring, we don't know what to wear, we don't know how long it will take, we don't know where to pick and we have no idea what it will cost us. Therefore, some advice is in order. Tell me dear readers, where and when does one find the most delectable Oregon strawberries? I found a website that lists some tips on picking strawberries, and stresses the importance of phoning farms before heading out, and getting there early. Any other indispensable tips to share?

My husband and I have earned a little weekend R&R (without kids!!) right after school lets out in mid-June. We'll be staying in Hood River, and we thought this might be a good time to hit a u-pick farm on our way home. Any suggestions on u-pick strawberry farms between Hood River and Portland?

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