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Clients can get a close-up look at century farms, pettable alpacas, heirloom vegetable growers and blacksmiths creating hand-forged gardening tools by following the Sandy Area Farm Loop. An easy-to- follow driving tour, it includes dozens of sites clustered around the Mount Hood foothills' town of Sandy, Ore., about 30 minutes east of Portland.
Sites along the loop include Esterbrook Farm, where the main attractions are the alpacas and fresh eggs; Red Pig Garden Tools, with hand-forged garden implements for sale in a rustic two-story barn that also houses a small museum; Starr Alpaca Farm, whose line of items made from alpaca fibers — blankets, shawls, teddy bears, gloves and hats — is complemented by nearby U-pick lavender fields; Wasson Brothers Winery, offering tours and wine tasting daily; and Rainbow Trout Farm, where clients can fish in any of ten ponds on a 30-acre estate. Most stops on the loop are open from spring through early fall; some operate year-round.
Clients can pick up a copy of the Sandy Area Farm Loop tour brochure at the Sandy Area Chamber of Commerce or download a PDF versions of the tour at www.sandyoregonchamber.org.