While other parts of the state start seeing gloomy, gray skies, Central Oregon’s sun continues to shine throughout the autumn. After the constant buzz of summer, fall in Central Oregon’s outdoors is a real opportunity to get back to nature. In southern Deschutes County, especially in the Newberry National Volcanic Monument, you’ll find no shortage of beautiful views and chances for adventure at Paulina Lake Lodge.
Sunriver Resort is an ideal jumping-off point for a weekend adventure in Central Oregon. Start your morning with a decadent breakfast at the lodge.
A short drive north toward Bend, you can learn about the volcanic activity that formed the region with a hike through the Lava Cast Forest, a stop at the Lava Lands Visitor Center or a trip into the Lava River Cave, which is an underground lava tube that stretches for a mile.
Nearby, a must-see is the High Desert Museum, which has exhibits about the region’s environment, historic significance and animals such as porcupines and river otters; a favorite for kids and adults alike.
For a bit of adventure, fall is the best time of year to mountain bike on Bend’s hundreds of trails or at Mt. Bachelor, the winter ski resort that increasingly offers off-season options like steep mountain trails for riders of all levels.
Fresh hop season, which generally starts shortly after Labor Day and gets into full swing in October, means Bend’s dozens of local breweries will offer pints of limited release fresh-hop beers—try Crux Fermentation Project, which recently underwent a remodel and has a happy hour around each day’s sunset.
Less than a 30-minute drive from Bend, Redmond’s downtown continues to flourish. Visitors can walk throughout the downtown area and see many public art pieces.
From Redmond, a short drive east takes you to Prineville. This small city has a pretty little downtown where you can pick up legitimate western wear at Prineville Men’s Wear and stroll by part of the Oregon Mural Trail.
A visit to Central Oregon isn’t complete without stopping at the Warm Springs Indian Reservation. Head to the Museum at Warm Springs, tucked away on the west side of Highway 26. It has a remarkable collection of artifacts from Native American life in the region and well-tended and organized exhibits.
Need help planning your trip? Contact Visit Central Oregon’s free travel concierge at 800-800-8334 or go to VisitCentralOregon.com.