North of McMinnville, the foothills of the Coast Range create an AVA of nearly 60,000 acres, centered around the hamlets of Carlton and Yamhill. Low ridges surround the two communities in a horseshoe shape, with the North Yamhill River coursing through nurseries, grain fields, orchards and more than 1,200 acres of vineyard. This pastoral northwest corner of Oregon’s Willamette Valley provides a unique set of growing conditions. The Coast Range to the west soars to nearly 3,500 feet (1,200m) establishing a rain shadow over the entire district. Additional protection is afforded by the Chehalem Mountains to the north and the Dundee Hills to the east. Importantly, the coarse-grained, ancient marine sediments native to the area are some of the oldest soils in the valley. These soils drain quickly, establishing a natural deficit-irrigation effect.