Callisto, ya know, this is just my opinion... please don't put a lot of stock in it. It's always best to check it out as thoroughly as possible on the internet and then spend some time in the area if at all possible before moving there (the expense of the move being the reason for that, along with the disappointment involved should you get stuck there and can't move somewhere else).
Pendleton wool comes from this area. That should have been a clue for me but it wasn't. Wool is the only natural fiber that will keep you warm when it's damp, or rainy, and cold out. We're so far north, we get a lot of the Alaskan storms during the winter/spring, as well as the Pacific storms during the spring and early summer, but can also have it come down from Canada and in the back door from across the Rockies. Although, Portland itself gets almost no snow... just a powdering 'perhaps' every winter that lasts a couple of hours. We did have an exception to that 1-1/2 years ago with 2 blizzards, one right after the other that shut down Portland for 10 days. However, that's very rare... at least rare any more. The climate has changed here during the last 50 years or so.
Oregon is really varied in what you'll find in the way of big cities. Once you get out of the Portland area (Salem is about 45 minutes away)... the big (?) cities are about two hours apart, separated by farming, vineyards and ranches (sheep and cattle, with a few horse and llama here and there). But it's the same in every direction, except southeast where there are only a couple of bigger towns because it's desert. And although I don't know how much there is to be worried about, we do have Mt. St. Helen's not far away... and it is
an active volcano (just thought I should let you know if you weren't aware). There are also logging communities here and there as well (not directly in Portland), Portland is a major inland seaport, so there's a fishing industry here, as well as importation of goods from all over the world - just like any other large seaport.
I've only been here about 3-1/2 years, moved here from the mts of NC where we lived in a rural area, but also a vacation/resort area, for 13 years, and before that all over CA. Like I said, each state is different... they each revolve around what's important to the majority of the people. Oregon happened to be where a lot of the hippy culture came in the 60's and 70's if they wanted to get back to nature, so there's a big art and nature culture here - the Portland area especially. But Portland, itself, has built up to a great extent with business since that time too - and as it's grown, so have the bedroom communities around it.
But you can still find many smallish sea-side towns, or wilderness areas in the mts not far away too. And it is beautiful with all the large rivers, the waterfalls, the mnts, caves, the ocean... and the wildlife - bear, cougar, beaver, deer, etc. This is going to sound really odd... but we even still have beaver that live in the small streams and creeks that go through our cities (several just up the street from where I live), and there are raccoons that have adapted to city living and get into the trash bins here all the time... and this is a city, not a rural area.... just don't have much in the way of high rises in this immediate area. At the apt complex I live in, there's a nutria (a large south amerian rodent that resembles a beaver) that lives in our pond. How it got there, I have no
idea! I don't live directly in Portland, I'm about 10 miles SW of there.
This is just one view... perhaps the ugliest... of what Portland looks like. Although the one of Hood River isn't one of the prettiest pictures they could have displayed either.
Here's a site with photos - post cards - of Portland.