Category Archives: Central and Eastern Oregon Region

Oregon Outback Scenic Byway

Oregon Outback Scenic Byway ~ A View into Oregon’s Past and Dynamic High Desert Scenery

Oregon Outback Scenic BywayRecently we took a road trip on one of Oregon’s 26 Scenic Byways, Oregon Outback Scenic Byway.  This byway takes you through a slice of the Great Basin, an isolated diverse landscape, where lush green forests of the Oregon Cascades are replaced by sagebrush and stunning rock formations.

See striking evidence of mysterious rock formations left behind by volcanoes at Fort Rock.  The Abert Rim is a 30-mile-long fault escarpment, one of the nation’s longest and most continuous fault escarpment that rises more than 2,000 feet above the Byway.

Take a few minutes to stop at Picture Rock Pass, named for ancient Indian petroglyph-decorated rocks that are within walking distance of the highway.  I discovered these while seeking Geocache GC18MWG ‘Between Basins’.  Yes, I am a cacher and, as everywhere in Oregon,  there are plenty for you to hunt for.  Don’t miss Lakeview Geyser Earthcache GC23CK7, the Old Perpetual Geyser.

Picture Rock Pass offers panoramic views of the lakes and forests. Stunning Winter Rim divides forest and desert and as the Geocache ‘Between Basins’ suggests, ancient lake basins.  The Paisley Caves, discovered in the cliffs above the Great Basin, have revealed fossils and evidence of human habitation as long as 14,000 years ago.

We also took advantage of a soak in the mineral baths of Summer Lake Hot Springs.  You won’t want to miss that.

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

On the birding trail again.  This time on the Three Sisters Loop of the Oregon Cascade Birding Trail.  This loop is a bit south of the Mt. Jefferson Loop so you could spend a few days, using an Oregon Bed and Breakfast Inn as your home base to observe the region’s birds and spectacular scenery that is the Central Oregon Cascades.

At the heart of the Oregon Cascades lies the Three Sisters Wilderness, named for three 10,000-foot volcanic peaks.  The Three Sisters Loop traverses some of Oregon most stunning scenery with nearly 50 prime birding sites.  Eleven species of Woodpeckers nest the between Santiam and McKenzie Passes.  Hidden lakes and marshes are home to many species, including the yellow headed blackbird and the Western Meadowlark, Oregon’s state bird.

May we recommend Long Hollow Ranch, just minutes from downtown Sisters?  This working cattle ranch offers at home atmosphere with quiet and comfortable guest rooms.  Guests of Long Hollow Ranch can schedule a trail ride, with a horse suitable to their size and riding skills.  What better way to explore the mixed conifer forests, high desert rim rocks and diverse birding habitats?

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

Oregon Birding

It’s that Time of Year again:  Time to follow the Spring Bird Migration

With the Spring Bird Migration about to begin it’s time to book your room, pack your binoculars and set out on your bird watching adventure to 7 superb Oregon Birding locations.  The state’s diverse and spectacular landscape provide varied habitats ranging from sandy beaches to verdant forests, from desert playas to alpine meadows. More than 500 species of birds call Oregon home year round or migrate through, sometimes stopping to nest.

The Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild has over 40 quality assured inns scattered throughout the state, each near a unique birding opportunity.  Our innkeepers know the most favorable viewing areas and after providing a comfy bed, hearty breakfast and useful information, will send you off on an extraordinary birding adventure.  The Guild recognizes this popular activity and has dedicated a page to Birdwatching that includes inns where innkeepers can share the best observation sites and what you might expect to see.

1. Watch surfbirds and black oystercatchers scramble over rocky headlands along the Oregon Coast.

2. Explore the alpine meadows, picturesque lakes, mountain streams, and dense conifer forests of the Cascades in search of Lewis’s woodpecker and Clark’s nutcracker.  Listen to the song of hermit warblers among majestic pines framing the snowy volcanic peaks. Mt. Jefferson, Oregon’s second highest peak.

3/4. The murmur of thousands of snow geese will mesmerize as they settle to rest in the tule marshes of the Klamath Basin and Malheur National Wildlife Refuge.

5. Salem, is a leader in urban forestry, with tree-lined streets and 40 city parks and is located in the heart of the Willamette Valley alongside the Willamette River so no wonder there are many birding sites in its backyard.

6. Supporting one of the highest concentrations of breeding hawks and eagles in North America, the Zumwalt Prairie in Eastern Oregon, is also home to falcons making this a haven for birds of prey and 17 species of grassland songbirds. The nearby Wallowa Lake has a wide variation in habitat and terrain drawing a large number of species.

7. The Mt. Hood Loop of the OCBT rises from the Columbia River to Mt. Hood and combines some of the best of the region’s birding with legendary Oregon scenery.  This loop traverses the Columbia River National Scenic Area and the Mt. Hood National Forest and visits 19 birding sites.

When your journey ends, your bags are unpacked, and you’re scrolling through your vacation photos you will reminisce on memories of great accommodations, food, conversation and of course birding in Oregon.

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

windmills of sherman county

Windmills of Sherman County GC1X205

The Windmills of Sherman County, GC1X205, is a geocache with expansive views of Oregon’s Windfarms.  Head east on I-84 out of Portland, through the Columbia River Gorge, where the spectacular river canyon opens up to the rolling high desert wheat fields of the Columbia Basin.  It is stunning, big skies and vast views.  Rock formations left over from the Ice Age Missoula Floods, floods that shaped the landscape and the Columbia River Gorge.  And wind, sometimes gentle but often times strong.  The perfect place for hundreds of wind turbines.  Oregon’s goal:  to capture 20% of our energy needs from the wind.

Traveling south off the Interstate into the heart of Oregon, along the John Day River, be sure to explore the three units of the John Day Fossil Bed National Monument.   Take a Journey through Time on a scenic byway into ancient Oregon where paleontological research is ongoing.  Millions of years ago the west coast states, Oregon, Washington, and California were sea beds and the fossils discovered throughout the monument are evidence to that.

Plan your road trip around an Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild Member Inns located in Central Oregon.

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

McKenzie River Koosah Falls

McKenzie Pass Scenic Byway

These Scenic rides/drives can be taking in your car or on your bike or maybe both.  Either way there is an Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member inn where you can rest your tired bones at either end.   Plan either your two or 4-wheeled vacation in Oregon on one of Oregon’s Scenic Drives in the Central Cascades.  Oregon has 15 routes in the Scenic Bikeways program. These routes were created, inspected, ridden and officially approved by Ride Oregon Ride and those cyclists who have made Oregon a bike friendly state at the head of the pack.

I’ve included links for both the McKenzie River Scenic Bikeway and the McKenzie Pass/Santiam Pass Scenic Byway.  Both allow you to start your journey in Sisters, Oregon, before heading over the McKenzie Pass to at the McKenzie River Round House. Finish the 82 mile ride by taking the McKenzie Pass/Santiam Pass Scenic Byway back to Sisters. Lava fields, snowcapped peaks and rushing rivers mark this 82-mile loop around two of Central Oregon’s Cascade Mountain passes.

Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild is ready to share Oregon with you: it’s environment, culture, and heritage. Combine gracious hospitality with ambiance at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

Total Solar Eclipse

Total Solar Eclipse to sweep across 14 states in 2017.  Are you an Eclipse-Chaser and do you have your accommodations reserved?

A Total Solar Eclipse will occur in America for the first time in 26 years and it will sweep across Oregon, first touching land at a rocky spot of ground just north of Newport at about 10:15 in the morning on August 21, 2017. This lucky little piece of earth will experience a full minute and fifty seconds of totality.

This total solar eclipse is the first on American soil since 1991, the first to sweep across the entire country since 1918, and the first on the mainland since 1979.  It will be spectacular and people from all over the world will converge on the United States. Eclipse-chasers are already making a plans to position themselves in a spot carefully chosen to ensure they see the the most beautiful celestial event on the planet.  Just ask the innkeeper at the Baker City Blue Door Inn.  She has already booked eclipse-chasers from the UK, making the trip to Oregon to observe one of the most spectacular things they might ever see in their lives.

The actual centerline of the eclipse path hits solid ground a 10:21 am and plunges Lincoln Beach and Depoe Bay into darkness for 1 minute and 58 seconds!  It will only take about two minutes for the shadow to race eastward toward cities in the Willamette Valley, each experiencing various durations of totality.  Salem is the first of 5 state capitals the shadow will visit and lucky viewers will be treated to 1 minute and 54 seconds of shadow just after 10:17am.

The eclipse continues traveling east through the forests of the Oregon Cascades, reaching Madras at about 10:19 before crossing the high deserts of Central Oregon.  And at about 11:25 am the shadow leaves Oregon just north of Ontario, continuing its journey through 13 more states.

Many inns of the Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild will be in the path of the 2017 Total Solar Eclipse.  I’ve linked their cities throughout this blog. Contact one to see how close they are to the shadows path.

The innkeepers of the Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild are ready to share with you their version of Oregon Culinary Tourism and Geotourism.  Get to know our State like a local; stay with one of our nearly 100 hosts in any one of our many regions. Experience romantic getaways, historic treasures, and tucked away rustic retreats.  Whether your trip is for a quiet escape to a quaint rural or coastal town, taking in Oregon Geotourism, for a World Class City experience, or for a new spin on business travel, you can be assured of combining gracious hospitality with ambiance by staying at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.

Tumalo Falls outside of Bend, Oregon

Tumalo FallsTumalo Falls is both the tallest, 89 feet, and most impressive waterfall along Tumalo Creek – as well as one of the most popular outdoor destinations in the vicinity of Bend.

You can Chase Waterfalls with us by subscribing to this blog, follow us on Pinterest, and on our Facebook Page.  According to Wiki there are at least 238 waterfalls in Oregon!  I’m guessing even more than that.  Wouldn’t it be grand to witness the beauty of every one of them?  With 77 waterfalls on the Oregon side of the Columbia River Gorge alone, we’ve set out to find them all plus those in the nearby Mt Hood National Forest, Washington and beyond. And when we do we’ll share our finds with you, our guests, so you too can set out to Chase Waterfalls.

Choose an Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member nearby as your home base.  May we suggest Long Hollow Ranch

The innkeepers of the Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild are ready to share Oregon, its environment, culture, and heritage with you.  Get to know our State like a local. Whether you’re looking for a quiet escape, a world class city experience, or a new spin on business travel,  you can be assured of combining gracious hospitality with ambiance when staying at an inspected and approved Oregon Bed and Breakfast Guild member Inn.