As the outdoor recreation capital of Oregon (and that’s saying something in a state as outdoorsy as Oregon), Bend has plenty of fun ways for you to enjoy the Great Outdoors AND stay active during your vacation. Whether you prefer the snowy slopes, the sunny running tracks, or the wooded hiking and biking trails, you will find the time of your life waiting for you right here in the heart of the Cascade Mountains.
Trail Runs are Fun Runs
Nestled high in the Cascades located in a unique ecosystem known as a high desert, Bend is blessed with tons of sunshine year-round. The sunny weather, when combined with 51 miles of urban trails make Bend a natural winner of Outside magazine’s “Best Trail Running Town.” Check out the extensive network of trails perfectly suited for trail running including miles of graded dirt paths along the Deschutes River and winding routes through sagebrush and old lava flows on the Green Lakes Trail.
Central Oregon boasts some of the most beautiful scenery in the Pacific Northwest. Thanks to a large network of well-maintained trails, it is easy to find the perfect hike for you to explore this wild and beautiful wilderness. The Oregon Desert Trail runs for 750 miles, and hikers can hop on wherever they please in order to wander through sprawling deserts, towering mountain tops, and mysterious canyons. On the opposite end of the spectrum, Pilot Butte State Park offers easier hikes with a 2-mile hike up the butte skirting an extinct volcano while the Farewell Bend River Trail Loop is an inviting forest hike with excellent views of the river gorges. Another hike not to be missed is the Lava Cast Forest , a 1-mile paved trail through an old forest obliterated by a violent lava flow that left only ashy skeletal husks behind. If you are feeling really daring, there are even hikes into underground lava tubes and cave systems!
Bikes are a way of life in Bend. If you want to try a two-wheeled workout, there are hundreds of miles of scenic mountain biking trails as well as the Three Sisters Scenic Bikeway, a network of road routes offering unrivaled views of the incredible mountain vistas and river valleys. Whether you are looking for steep climbs, rapid descents, or long cruises, there is the perfect bike route for you in “Bike Town USA.”
Ride the River
Bend is also home to a wide variety of watersports. Rent a kayak and enjoy a calm paddle on the alpine lakes high in the Cascades, or test your mettle in the new Bend Whitewater Park featuring sections for floaters, nature enthusiasts, and whitewater warriors who want to battle the artificial – but very exciting – waves. For a new challenge, rent a stand-up paddleboard and set out on the Deschutes River to enjoy some peace and tranquility.
Of course, no review of the adventure activities in Bend is complete without a section on the slopes. Bend’s scenic mountains average 30′ of snowfall every year, making it the perfect destination for skiers and snowboarders alike. For a downhill workout, don’t miss the thrills of Mt. Bachelor Ski Resort or the major cardio workout of cross-country skiing or snowshoeing on the more than 45 miles of trails in the Bend forests, deserts, and wilderness areas.
Staying active in Bend is never a problem. With towering mountains, sweeping deserts, vast lava fields, and winding river valleys dotted with lush forests, here you can have it all, in any season. Ready for an adventure? Book your vacation rental home with Bend Vacation Rentals today!