Over the last five years people have flocked to the Central Cascades wilderness areas. Some trails have had visitation levels increase 300 to 500 percent. To keep these wilderness “wild” the United States Forest Service(USFS) has implemented a limited entry permit system. Beginning the Friday before Memorial Day and ending the last Friday in September, overnight permits will be required within the Mt. Jefferson, Mt. Washington and Three Sisters Wilderness. Day-use permits will be required on 19 of the 79 trails in those wildernesses.
Reservations for the permits will open on the first Tuesday in April. You can get permits at www.recreation.gov. When you go to the website search for “Central Cascades Wilderness Permits” and follow the prompts. Make sure you are getting the permit you want before you finalize. Permits can be downloaded onto your smartphone or be printed out. If you need help you can visit any Forest Service office on the Deschutes or Willlamette National Forests.
There are some exceptions to the permit system and a few other important details that you can find at Recreation.gov. The USFS’s goal with the permit system is to make sure you plan ahead and get the permit you want to experience an adventure in the Central Cascades Wildernesses. Remember they are yours to enjoy and yours to protect.
We’re all out there, so Take Care Out There.
Explaining the Central Cascades Wilderness Permit Program
Summer in the Central Oregon outdoors will look different this year, due largely to the unveiling of the Central Cascades
Wilderness Permit System.
What to Bring on Your Next Central Oregon Hike
With Cascade peaks dotting our skyline and clear mountain lakes enticing paddlers — not to mention thick forests, craggy volcanic features…
How the Central Cascades Wilderness Permit…
To say that the Deschutes National Forest has seen higher use in recent years is kind of like saying that Central Oregon offers “some” outdoor recreation…
More inspiring stories, adventures, and tips & tricks for planning and experiencing the best Central Oregon has to offer.
Hiking Black Butte – Central Oregon’s Iconic & Majestic Cinder Cone
From a distance, Black Butte looks like it doesn’t quite match the picturesque alpine mountains that surround it. The volcanic rock that emerges above the tree line gives the impression of a hill constructed with loose stones that was carelessly dropped in the middle of the woods. Unlike the Cascades that puncture the horizon to the west and north, Black Butte can be hiked and enjoyed in under four hours.
Accessible Adventure: Easy Hikes for Families near Bend, Oregon
There are so many great hikes in Central Oregon, it can be tough to choose where to start. For beginner hikers or families here’s a couple of easy to get to – and more importantly – easy to conquer starter-hikes. Flanking the Deschutes River near Bend’s Old Mill District, the Deschutes River Trail is a 3-mile loop that starts near Farewell Bend Park.
Adventures Abound Starting at Sunriver Resort
Sunriver is the type of place that takes your breath away no matter what season it is. During the summer you can hop on a horse for your very own wild wild west experience. The team at Sunriver Stables will make you feel comfortable on your ride, even if you’ve never saddled up before. Whether you’re in a tube or a kayak, floating down the Deschutes River is a relaxing activity that’s fun for the whole family.
Casual Family Weekend in Sunriver
Imagine this: you’re riding your bike through a rolling meadow, the Cascade mountain range in the background, and the only sound is from the whir of a prop plane taking off against a crisp blue sky. Up ahead, your children pull carrots from their pockets and present them to a gathering of friendly horses in an adjacent pasture.
Outward Bound in the City: Central Oregon’s 5 Best Urban Hikes
Hiking in Central Oregon can take you deep into the wilderness, far away from worry and stress. But sometimes all you need is a quick break from reality…just a half hour or so outside in nature, on a trail, alone with your thoughts (or with your dog, husband and two kids.) There are hundreds of hikes and trails available in and around Bend, Oregon and Sunriver, Oregon. These “Urban Hikes” are the perfect remedy to slow down our all-too-busy lives.
Lava Lands Visitor Center a Central Oregon Geologic Gem
In the late 1960s NASA looked for a place to send astronauts who were training for a mission that would change the world. But before the mission could happen, NASA needed a place to mimic what they believed those astronauts would find on the surface of the moon. Because, after all, nobody had been there before so nobody really knew what the surface of the moon was like.
Central Oregon Hiking Trails
Head east on Highway 20 (Greenwood Avenue) to the Pilot Butte State Park. The parking area and trailhead are just east of the butte. Walk on either the nature trail or the paved road. The road is also for vehicle traffic, weather permitting. It is a wonderful viewpoint for the entire Bend area. This hiking trail is one of the most popular in Central Oregon.
Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway: Pull Off For a Central Oregon Adventure
The Cascade Lakes Scenic byway is one of the prettiest drives in the U.S. But it might be the most recreationally rich road you’ll ever drive too. From Bend southwest to the Highway 58 junction, the Oregon Route 372 cuts through 66 miles unique volcanic formations and geological beauty that offers everything that makes Central Oregon an outdoor lover’s paradise.
Central Oregon’s Moonscape
Many who come to Central Oregon say it looks like nowhere else they’ve visited. Sure, there are the mountain vistas and the Ponderosa pines, the picturesque rivers and the deep blue lakes. But to many, the most astonishing aspect is the lunarscape — the lava rocks, cinder cones and lava tubes that dot the region, betraying its geologic history.
The Central Oregon Adventure 6-Pack
6 ADVENTURES…1 DAY….A LIFETIME OF MEMORIES. “You should do it,” they said. “Think about how cool it’d be,” they told me. “You get to do it during the work day, ya know,” they reminded me. So I said yes.