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The Umatilla River cuts through the valley creating the Echo Meadows. The Meadows is a large scenic flood plain that first was home to Native Americans as early as 3000 years ago.
By 1860, the setting had begun to entice Oregon Trail emigrants to settle and farm here. This valley is an attractive mix of cottonwood and willow lined river bottom surrounded by rolling hills of sage brush, rabbit bush, bunch grass, wheat and many other crops.
Center pivot irrigation systems pumping from wells over 1000 feet deep began to make the desert bloom in the 1970s. As a contrast to the desert-like hills, Echo has often been described as an oasis in the desert, a fact that residents take pride in.
Housing and Land
Housing is limited, but over 200 acres of undeveloped land zoned for residential, light industrial and tourist commercial development is located on the hills north and east of town. Most of the property located on the valley floor has been developed.
Echo still retains its school, educating Kindergarten through 12th grade students.
Camping and Recreation
Fort Henrietta RV Park offers low rates for campers visiting northeast Oregon in an historic setting. The park lies adjacent to the city's Fort Henrietta Park, a National Historic Oregon Trail Site.
The Floral City
Echo is the Floral City of Umatilla County. The Dahlia is our official flower and the Red Horse Chestnut is our official tree, as reflected in the recently dedicated Dorn Tree in Fort Henrietta Park. Echo remains Oregon’s smallest Tree City USA designee, an Arbor Foundation honor dating back to 1989.
The city was an America in Bloom Small Cities' winner in 2009, 2010 and 2013. As a three time winner, Echo was honored with an AIB Circle of Champions award in 2013. An Oregon Heritage Award followed in 2009.
Tree City USA
Echo has been an award-winning Tree City USA designee since 1989. The Oregon Trail Arboretum now features over 100 ornamental trees and shrubs.