Calling all Deadheads, Grunge kids, Phish Phans, Swifties, Beliebers, Metalheads, and country lovers. Whatever genre of music gets you going, there is one thing all music lovers can agree on. Washington’s Gorge Amphitheater is THE place to catch a show in the PNW. Located in remote George, WA, (around 2.5 hours from Seattle) the amphitheater sits above the Columbia River at the foothills of the Cascade Mountains and offers a beautiful and sweeping backdrop to your concert. It draws big names because the venue holds over 27,000 fans at one time and offers a wide selection of food and drinks for all guests (including Beecher's!). Fun fact: The venue has won a ton of awards for being the best outdoor venue in America (take THAT Red Rocks).
Now, a concert venue in the remote desert does come with some logistical problems. First off, you aren’t going to find many hotels close by. In fact, there is only one we know of, Cave B. This spot is pretty sweet because it’s a spa AND winery (why, yes, please), and it’s walking distance to the amphitheater. However, it books up fast especially for big name shows.
Your other option is to camp, which really is what a weekend at the Gorge is all about. Our favorite campground is Wild Horse, which provides shuttles to and from the show, a restaurant/grill so you don’t have to pack all your camping cooking equipment, and free coffee in the mornings (which if you are doing things right you're going to need). You can also camp on the Gorge property. The Gorge offers a tiered selection of camping (including glamping in yurts!), but if you want the main lot, just know it’s a little bit crazier and a little bit dustier than Wild Horse. There is a ton of other camp ground options around the gorge, but they tend to be a bit more primitive and will require someone to stay sober to drive you to and from the show. No drinking and driving. This is important.
Your options for summer shows are running out as the season wraps up Labor Day weekend with a four night run by Dave Matthews. If Dave isn’t your thing, there are also a few festivals left as well.
Insider tip: Due to the location of the venue, it gets very hot during the day and very windy at night. Pack layers and don’t forget to check the weather!