1923-53: "World's Largest Logging Town";

Since 1953, the Oldest "Planned Community for Retired Persons". 

​​Photo by Kerry Haley via drone 3/30/2018

SR 506 starts here, no matter what the GPS says...

​​1923 - 1953: The Long-Bell Years

  • Longview and Ryderwood, WA were founded in 1923 by the Long-Bell Lumber Co. to harvest the virgin timber surrounding this area known as Cougar Flats.
  • The "World's Largest Logging Camp"" was built for loggers and their families. The Company provided a full array of services including a store, theater, cafe, drugstore, bowling alley, creamery, school and church. 
  • The first logs were shipped to Longview the spring of 1924 via Long-Bell's Longview, Portland & Northern Railroad.

Ryderwood, Washington ~ "The Town With Two Histories"

Travel note: From I-5, follow SR 506 detour signs to Exit 63. From  south, can take Westside Hwy to intersection with Vader Rd. (SR 506 W).

​​1953 - Present: Retirement Village

  • By 1953, the logs and the loggers were pretty much gone and the entire town was for sale.
  • Town for Sale for $90,000! Senior Estates, Inc. was formed to purchase and develop what we believe is the oldest "planned community for retired persons" in the US.​​​​
  • Today, all 274 privately owned homes are reserved for owners and occupants over the age of 55.
  • ​Today the Town is managed by the Ryderwood Improvement & Service Association, Inc. (RISA). The Association complies with all aspects of the “Housing for Older Persons Act” (HOPA) exception to the Fair Housing Act. 
  • With the exception of 2 Office employees, Ryderwood is totally managed and operated by volunteers, which is reflected by its low membership fees (currently $35/mo.). The Association's Board, Café, Library, and Maintenance crews are all volunteers.