Spring always seems too short here in beautiful Bend. The weather wavers back and forth between staying cool and warming up, and there are days when we can experience snow flurries one minute and the next be basking in the sun enjoying a warm, balmy breeze. But, that’s all good, because it means you can also experience a wider variety of activities in Bend, Oregon during your stay.
Hit the slopes one last time! Luckily for us, Mt. Bachelor has one of the longest ski seasons in the country, so you can still enjoy skiing, snowshoeing, snowboarding and tubing. And if the snow is sparse, there’s plenty of other activities at Mt. Bachelor to enjoy, no matter the season or what the weather is doing. Get a bird’s eye view of the area on the scenic lift ride or the exhilarating zip line, hit the downhill mountain bike park, or just enjoy a day of hiking on the mountain.
Take a leisurely hike along the Deschutes River Trail as it winds along the river and downtown, or a hike up Pilot Butte (a dormant cinder cone right downtown!) for a panoramic view of Bend and the surrounding area. Hike to popular Tumalo Falls or the Paulina Plunge for a reward of spectacular waterfalls after a lovely hike through alpine forests and high mountain prairies. And mountain bikers can enjoy over 500 miles of single-track in Bend. Too muddy? Rent a fat bike!
It’s springtime in Oregon and that means wildflowers will be filling meadows with colorful blooms, and it’s birdwatching time. A few of the best spots for wildflower viewing and birdwatching (and scenic hikes) are Iron Mountain and pretty much anywhere in the Oregon Badlands Wilderness.
Take a tour focused on what you love. Wanderlust Tours offers half-day guided tours, and you can choose from kayaking and canoeing tours, craft beverage tours, lava tube caves and volcano tours, photography tours and snowshoeing tours, just to mention a few.
Golfing in Bend will be hard any time of year since it will be difficult to concentrate on your game instead of admiring the view. The Nicklaus Course at Pronghorn Golf Club, a Jack Nicklaus designed course in Bend features lava outcroppings, Juniper-lined fairways, and the Cascades as a backdrop as you play through. And Bend’s Widgi Creek Golf Club, in the Deschutes National Forest, boasts one of the longest Par 5s in the country (at 653 yards) along with practice putting greens and a natural grass driving range. The Juniper Golf Course in nearby Redmond, and the Aspen Lakes Golf Course and Big Meadow at Black Butte Ranch (both in Sisters) are a few other public courses worth the short trip. And while you play your round at Black Butte, others in your group can enjoy the fitness center, swimming pools and spa.
Enjoy a stroll through Downtown Bend or the Old Mill District where you can browse through galleries and shops featuring local artists’ wares and everything made in Bend or Oregon you can want. Plus, there’s always something going on downtown, with the First Friday Art Walk, the Bend Film Festival, the Annual Foodie Crawl and more. Or join the craft brew aficionados working their way along each delicious stop on the Bend Ale Tour.
Have the first cook-out of the season. Pick up some locally sourced steaks or chops while you’re in town, and get in your grilling zone out on your vacation rental’s deck as you enjoy the view of the snow-capped Cascade Mountains. Not in the mood to cook? While you’re downtown, stop at Baldy’s or The Speckled Pig for delicious BBQ and all the fixin’s, and have a picnic out on the deck with the view.
Smith Rock State Park (near Redmond) is known around the world by serious climbers as one of the best climbing spots, and to the rest of us for its unique, dramatic landscape full sheer cliffs, towering spires of colorful rock, and rocky canyons where the Crooked River has carved and cut through layers of the ancient rock.
Head to the Deschutes National Forest for wildlife viewing, amazing panoramic views, alpine lakes, scenic drives through alpine forests, and depending on the weather, skiing, snowboarding, sledding, tubing, snowmobiling, snowshoeing, hiking, biking, fishing and boating. From placid Lake Billy Chinook to the top of South Sister’s summit, there’s something for everyone here.
Visit Newberry National Volcanic Monument where you can walk over ancient lava flows frozen in time, like the amazing, brilliant Big Obsidian Flow, or explore the dormant cinder cone of a volcano. Crater Lake National Park is a little farther out, but worth the trip. It’s the deepest lake in North America, and is an amazing turquoise color.
Spring in Bend
After a long day of hiking or skiing on the mountain, you’ll want to head back to your vacation rental for an evening in front of the roaring fire, or maybe snuggling together out on the deck gazing at the stars. Our spring rentals are located throughout the Bend area, so you’ll be able to select the perfect vacation rental near the things you want to do while you’re here, whether that’s downtown or nestled on the side of the mountain.
Need help narrowing down your choices? Or maybe you’d like a few more suggestions for things to do near Bend Oregon? Just give us a call today!