In Bend Oregon, our seasonal weather is anything but predictable. These past couple of months have proved this, alternately between snow, rain, sun, wind and everything in between. The good news is that this “bridge” time gives us many options when it comes to recreation, depending on the day and its arbitrary weather pattern. The season right now? A mix of winter and spring: Sprinter.
Get some final turns in at Mt. Bachelor: Don’t put your snow gear away quite yet. After a winter that was decidedly light on snowfall, Mother Nature has graced us with a fairly wet April and May so far, which has meant more snow up on our local hill. Much more. While shortened spring hours and lighter staffing is already in effect up at Mt. Bachelor, you can still enjoy skiing and snowboarding for a few more weeks. And the chance of a bluebird day is high this time of year, so get the most out of this extended season.
Check out a newly opened Cascade Lakes Highway: You’re probably used to visiting this part of Bend Oregon’s recreational wonderland in the summer months, but there’s nothing like seeing this beautiful part of the region in spring (sprinter). The highway opened up this week past the Mt Bachelor turnoff, despite late season snow. It’s a different landscape up there right now, and you’ll love all the special discoveries you can make. Your favorite spots probably seem like an entirely different world this time of year. Crowds will also be at a minimum. The road up to Paulina and East Lakes has also recently opened.
Visit Lava Lands Visitor Center: Just opened up again for the season, this is the perfect time of year to visit the lava flows and lava river cave south of Bend Oregon. Hike the paved trail and get a view of the lava-covered landscape in the spring – you’ll be surprised how many hearty plants you’ll find growing among the dramatic rock formations. The Visitor’s Center is a favorite for all ages, giving insight into the volcanic events that shaped our area. Bundle up and take a tour of the Lava River Cave – a good place to escape the heat in the summer, it will be less crowded this time of year.
Plant your garden (but not too soon): Many people new to the area make the mistake of planting flowers or gardens too early in the season – tricked by one of our warm, sunny days before the night plunges to below freezing again. A good rule of thumb (although not foolproof) is to wait until after Memorial Day to plant. But you can get ready now by visiting some of our amazing local nurseries for ideas. There are a few tucked away that you may not know about, including Whistle Stop Farm and Flowers and Schilling’s Garden Market, both now open for the season.
While the weather may be up in the air, having fun in Bend Oregon is never uncertain. There is always something amazing to do, whatever the season.