The city of Bend, in central Oregon, often called “the outdoor playground of the west,” is renowned for its summer pursuits like camping, hiking the mountains and buttes, kayaking and stand-up paddle boarding on the lakes, and the myriad dog parks. But Bend also offers a full palette of adventures and pastimes for winter fun.
Ride an Iditarod Dogsled
The highlight of a trip to Bend will be the Trail of Dreams dog sled tour through the towering, snow-frosted hemlock pines. With Mt. Bachelor, Broken Top, and the Three Sisters mountain ranges hovering on the horizon, the exhilarating race through the chilly Deschutes National Forest is magical. The Alaskan Huskies, directed by the tour guide, Jerry Scdoris, bounds along the twists and turns with guests bundled under blankets inside the Iditarod sled. Jerry does not use whips or “motivational” instruments of any kind – the dogs respond solely to his voice commands and his care and connection to his animals is inspiring.
Wanderlust Tours runs several snowshoeing tours which start out at the base of Mt. Bachelor. Their tours are geared toward the skill level of the guests, from the slower pace of seniors to airborne jumps into high drifts of powdery snow more suitable for 20-something young men. You can stop to make snow angels, have a mug of hot chocolate under the stars, or one tour even combines beer tasting with snowshoeing. One thing in common for all groups is the stunning wooded scenery with the Cascade Mountains juxtaposed against the periwinkle blue sky.
Ski Mt. Bachelor
Part of the Cascade Mountain Range, Mt. Bachelor is the second largest single-mountain ski resort and the sixth largest of all ski resorts in the United States. The resort is known for its powdery conditions, 10 working chairlifts and one old-school chairlift that is non-operational but has been left on the property for nostalgic value. There are also 12 groomed trails for cross-country skiing.
For more Bend Oregon events and activities, click here to read about winter adventures in Bend, published 2/13/2104 by TravelersPress.
You may also be interested in these stories about Bend Oregon: