area is divided into three parts:
Boardman, Pendleton, Hell’s Canyon & Wallowa
Sisters, Metolius River, Camp Sherman, Bend,
Crater Lake, Klamath Falls, Steens Mountains
Since the early 1900s, vacationers have been flocking to this
tiny town on the Metolius River near Sisters.
Most of those visitors were wheat farmers from Sherman County,
Oregon, hence the name. Camp Sherman Store is
still a hub for fishing gear, groceries, community news,
deli sandwiches, fresh baked goodies and the all-important
Sisters & Vicinity
Sisters is all gussied up frontier style with replicated
facades of authentic historic buildings. Shops, galleries and
cafes offer diversion, but the true allure is the setting and
300 days of sunshine. Desert sagebrush landscapes transition
to Ponderosa pine of the Deschutes National Forest where
countless lakes and trails are set amid a cluster of snow-capped
volcanoes — Three Sisters, Mt. Jefferson, Mt.
Washington, Three-Fingered Jack. Don’t
miss the sparkling, sometimes teal and turquoise Metolious River
as it gurgles out of the ground from springs, even though now
partially obscured by vegetation. Still, how many rivers can
you see being born?
Black Butte Ranch has golf and drop-dead views,
and lunch on the docks at Suttle Lake Resort is
It’s so dark in Sisters under a new moon that
you cannot ride a bicycle along back roads without the help of
a young niece, whose night eyes are better than yours. But the
niece does not have a sense of direction, and you do. It is a
happy combination that gets you both from dinner at Jen’s
Garden after visiting with the chef and owner and a couple of strangers
over dessert and wine on the outdoor candle lit patio until nearly
midnight back to Five Pine Lodge on the outskirts
of town without mishap.
Whatever you do, don’t miss that stupendous night
sky — not so great for bicycling, but splendid for stargazing.
Five Pine Lodge The dramatic
rock fireplace is the first thing you encounter in the lobby
of this classic new lodging. Custom Craftsman-style furniture
is elegant and perfectly suited to the surroundings with charming
details such as hand-painted fireplace tiles and chess board
side tables and hand-carved chess pieces. Watch out for the tubs!
Water falls from overhead. All cottage and lodge rooms include
a complimentary natural energy breakfast, hosted wine reception
and access to the on-campus Sister Athletic Club.
The surprisingly serene Shibui Spa is on site.
Bikes available for tooling around town.
www.visitbend.com Once rugged cowboy and timber country, Bend has become a premiere
leisure destination and recreation paradise with tons of
golf courses, Mt. Bachelor and plenty of
rivers and lakes nearby. The recent influx of newcomers has
transformed the sleepy lumber town into a tiny cosmopolitan
city full of interesting shops, galleries, restaurants, breweries,
coffee spots — basically anything an upscale heart desires.
With the meteoric growth, things are a bit wobbly at the
moment — land & housing speculators caught in the crunch.
Evolution or devolution? Still, all that sun!
Summer Lake & Vicinity
This favorite remote lake in south central Oregon is high desert
glorious. On Oregon’s “Outback” National Scenic Byway (Hwy.
31). From central lodging at the lake, you can explore ancient
petroglyphs and geologic wonders, hike, fish, bike and explore.
Hot springs too and those star-filled nights. Nearby Paisley,
home of the mosquito festival, is Summer Lake’s home post
Summer, Summer Lake and Another
Summer, Summer Lake]
The Chinook Room, Juniper
Room high desert views & outdoor
summertime salmon bakes at Kah Nee Ta High Desert Resort & Casino www.kahneeta.com.
The Boathouse Restaurant at
the Lodge at Suttle Lake www.thelodgeatsuttlelake.com NW
cuisine, beer, wine (summertime outdoor on the lake dock) 541.595.BOAT
(2628). Kokanee Café in Camp Sherman very fine
dining indeed in a rustic location, bar and excellent wines 541.595.6420. Lake
Creek Lodge Restaurant July & August, NW cuisine,
wines, share outdoor tables friendly family style. Camp
Sherman Store www.campshermanstore.com,
great little deli, baked goods and all the fishing, camping,
hiking gear you need. The Restaurant at the Lodge at
Black Butte Ranch www.BlackButteRanch.com 541.595.1260,
NW cuisine, open vistas to meadow, lake and mountains & Aspen
Lounge for cocktails, lighter fare. Sisters Bakery 251
E. Cascade Ave., Jen's Garden www.intimatecottagecuisine 541.549.2699, downtown Sisters. Not to be missed! French inspired
NW cuisine (outdoor summer patio). Now serving breakfast. Yes,
of course, excellent desserts, wines & beer.
Pine Tavern www.pinetavern.com all-natural
Oregon Country beef, famous sourdough scones. Bend
Brewing Company www.bendbrewingco.com overlooks
the Deschutes River at Mirror Pond, outdoor decks. Jackalope
Grill www.jackalopegrill.com NW
cuisine, excellent wine list. McMenamins
Old St. Francis School www.mcmenamins.com pub
and good food. Crossings dining and lounge at Riverhouse
Hotel www.riverhouse.com breakfast,
lunch & dinner award-winning steakhouse & wine
list. Weather permitting river view patio. Meadows, Owl’s
Nest Pub, Merchant Trader Café, Zeppa’s at
Sun River Resort www.sunriver-resort.com and
other Village eateries www.sunvillage.com
Cowboy Dinner Tree http://cowboydinnertree.homestead.com steakhouse, pre-fixe meals cowboy style. Fair
only 541.576.2426. Silver Lake Café & Bar www.silverlakecafeandbar.com,
burgers, BLTs, shakes!
The Lodge at Summer Lake www.thelodgeatsummerlake.com home
cookin’ breakfast, lunch & dinner.
Kah Nee Ta High Desert Resort & Casino www.kahneeta.com on Warm Springs Indian Reservation. Hot springs spa and resort
with lodge balcony view rooms, Village suites, teepees, RV park.
Golf, hiking, horseback riding, spa, natural hot springs pools.
Perfect destination for cold, rainy west-of-the-Cascades days.
Dining on site.
Sisters and Vicinity
Lake Creek Lodge www.lakecreeklodge.com at Camp Sherman. If you yearn for a true vintage summer cabin-in-the-woods
vacation, this is it. Nestled among ponderosa pine with wide
lawns and a creek running through the property, cabins are close
enough for friendly visits, yet apart for privacy. Take the whole
family including grandma and grandpa, aunts, uncles and cousins
like some have done for decades and call the place home for a
week or two. Pool, tennis court, restaurant on site.
Five Pine Lodge www.fivepinelodge.com Classic new lodging in Sisters. Choose suites in the lodge or
cottages sprinkled amongst pine trees along a rock-lined creek.
Fair Warning: No elevator to two-story lodge suites. Bikes, healthy
continental breakfast and evening wine social included. Shibui
Spa & Sisters Athletic Club on site.
Black Butte Ranch www.BlackButteRanch.com,
spectacular green pastures, lake and mountain views. Closed community
of privately owned houses & condos tucked in pine woods with
asphalt biking & hiking paths meandering to and around pools,
ponds, golf course. Great for families & groups. Fair
Many disappointing 1970-80s suburban style dwellings.
The Lodge at Suttle Lake www.thelodgeatsuttlelake.com.
Luxury and historic cabins with full kitchens. A thriving resort
in the 1920s–1940s, recently revived with new Cascadian Style
lodge & cabins near water’s edge. General store/marina for
summer bikes and watercraft rentals. Floating Boathouse Restaurant & bar
House on the Metolius www.metolius.com.
An away-from-it-all retreat with four fully equipped cottages
amid towering pine and lawns, two perched above Metolious River
gorge eye-to-eye with osprey & eagles. Lovely meadow, river,
Metolius River Resort www.metoliusriverresort.com.
Privately owned cabins on the banks of the Metolius River in
Old St. Francis School www.mcmenamins.com another whimsical art & history filled historic re-do, this
time a 1936 Catholic schoolhouse in the center of downtown Bend.
Lara House Lodge www.larahouse.com.
Luxurious B&B in 1910 craftsman two blocks from downtown
Bend shops and restaurants. Fair Warning: Untested, highly recommended
Hotel & Convention Center www.riverhouse.com.
Sprawling lodging along the Deschutes River. Some units with
decks, river views. Pool, golf course & steakhouse on site.
Sun River Resort www.sunriver-resort.com Premiere summer vacation and ski resort with lodges, condo-style
rooms & suites, cabins, privately owned vacation home rentals,
golf course, restaurants, spa, village. Some river, meadow and
Summer Lake Hot Springs Resort www.summerlakehotsprings.com Wonderfully rustic & remote with houses and newer tiny thermal
heated cabins, RV and campsites. Alas, the fine collection of
Air Stream trailers for rent blew away years ago in a storm.
A 1927 shed houses the hot springs pool, showers and changing
Summer Lake Inn www.summerlakeinn.com.
Exceptional high desert oasis featuring the 1902 homestead lodge
and cluster of custom cabins overlooking a wide expanse of lake
and sky, rugged mountains looming in the distance. Kitchens,
decks, handsome antique and contemporary furnishings, accented
with Native American art. Canoe on the inn’s small pond or bird
watch from your deck. [ARCHIVES: A
Summer, Summer Lake + Another
Summer, Summer Lake]
The Lodge at Summer Lake www.thelodgeatsummerlake.com.
1940s “lodge” (former remodeled barracks) with Western Façade.
Motel and simple cabins (on three-acre bass pond), RV, tent sites
and showers. Good food on site at the only restaurant in Summer
Fly-fishing, white-water rafting, skiing, hiking, biking.
Cascade Birding Trail www.oregonbirdingtrails.org,
Suttle Lake (boating, biking, hiking) and
Wizard Falls Fish Hatchery (toss pellets in the pond to lure
monster trout into a feeding frenzy – take plenty of quarters
for the pellet machines and walk back to the bridge to ogle Metolius
River turquoise here. www.metoliusriver.com;
golf at Black Butte Ranch, winter skiing at Hoodoo www.hoodoo.com.
Famous rock climbing at Smith Rock.
Two gems: The Museum
at Warm Springs www.warmsprings.biz.
Small, but very special at the base of the hill US Hwy. 26, Warm
Springs — beautiful weavings, basketry, beadwork, art,
crafts, songs and languages of the Confederated Tribes of The
Warm Springs Reservation. High Desert Museum www.highdesertmuseum.org near Bend. Splendid art, artifacts, culture, natural history,
homestead. Not to be missed.
Summer Lake Wildlife Area & Vicinity: www.oregonsoutback.com hot
springs, fishing, hunting, birdwatching, pictographs at Picture
Pass; weird Lost Forest ponderosa pines
in desert sand dunes; geologic wonders of Crack-in-the-Ground and Hole-in-the-Ground;
10,000 year old sandals, artifacts and homestead buildings at
Fort Rock State Natural Area www.oregonstateparks.org;
dinosaur bones at Fossil Lake; hike and ride (horseback mountain
bike) all day rarely seeing anyone else except possibly mountain
lions, elk and mule deer in Fremont-Winema National Forest www.fs.fed.us;
watch for mountain goats on Winter Ridge. Fair
Warning: Big country;
lots of driving from site to site. But great stuff.
Summer Lake + Another
Summer, Summer Lake]
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