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Top Winter Adventures in Central Oregon

Central Oregon is an outdoor enthusiasts paradise – perhaps known better for our endless summer activities like hiking, cycling, golf and more. The thing is…you can actually do a lot of those same things during the winter AND we have one of the top ski resorts in the world right in our backyard.

Here’s our list of Top Winter Adventures in Central Oregon


Skiing/Snowboarding

a skier at Mt. Bachelor
Photo by Alan Huestis/Studio 404

In Sunriver and Bend’s backyard is Mt. Bachelor, the Northwest’s premier ski area, famous for its dry and abundant powder and 360-degrees of skiable terrain. Just outside Sisters, Hoodoo offers some no-frills/big hills skiing that stretches into the night! Both ski areas work with area lodging partners to offer great stay-and-ski deals during the winter.


Sled Dog Rides

sled dog rides
Sled dog rides with Oregon Trail of Dreams

Experience the unique thrill of a sled dog ride from the team of Oregon Trail of Dreams at Mt. Bachelor. Get up close and personal with the team of four-legged endurance athletes and mushers who have raced the pups in some of the biggest events in the world, including the famous Iditarod.


 

Golf

Fairway on The Nicklaus Course near Bend, Oregon

That’s right – golf in the winter. Thanks to our 300 days of sun and relatively warm winter climate, many of Central Oregon’s 30 golf courses are open year-round – including Pronghorn, one of Golf Digest’s 100 Greatest Public Courses. Or check out Meadow Lakes Golf Course in Prineville, where it rarely ever snows.


Snowshoeing

snowshoeing image

Take a hike into the Central Oregon backcountry with a knowledgeable U.S. Forest Service Ranger at Mt. Bachelor. Free guided hikes are available every day during holiday breaks and on the weekends throughout the winter.


Ice Skating

Sunriver Resort Near Bend Oregon

Channel your inner Michelle Kwan or Wayne Gretzky at one of Central Oregon’s ice skating rinks. You can find rinks at The Village at Sunriver, Seventh Mountain Resort and Centennial Plaza in Redmond. There’s also a full-sized rink in the heart of Bend near the Old Mill District.


Cycling

Smith Rock State Park

In Central Oregon, most of the snow falls in the mountains which means many of our 300 miles of singletrack remain open year-round. In fact, the trails at Smith Rock State Park in Terrebonne and Horse Butte in Bend are actually better in the winter when it’s not so hot. But if you want to play in the snow, we have bike trails for that too. Fat biking is the next big thing in cycling and Central Oregon and a must-do for avid cyclists visiting the area in the winter.


Nordic Skiing

Mt. Bachelor nordic skiing
Nordic skiing at Mt. Bachelor

With numerous snow-parks on the road to Mt. Bachelor offering miles of groomed trails and a huge groomed trail system at the ski area, there’s no shortage of cross-country ski options in Central Oregon. Golf courses at places like Black Butte Ranch and Sunriver Resort also become Nordic ski areas when there’s enough snow.


Tubing

hoodoo tubing hill 2
Autobahn Tubing Park at Hoodoo

We know not everyone is into skiing and snowboarding (some just enjoy hitting up the ski area bars.) But for those who want just a taste of adrenaline, try one of our tubing or sledding hills. At Mt. Bachelor, the Snowblast Tubing Park is “where the rubber meets the snow…and is full of fun with an 800-foot ride full of rollers.” At Hoodoo near Sisters, the Autobahn Tubing Park is a blast for kids of all ages. You can also find a popular local sledding hill at the Wanoga Sno-Park on the way to Mt. Bachelor.

Ted Taylor
Ted Taylor
Ted Taylor manages COVA's digital content, media relations, PR and social media. He's an award-winning reporter and editor who has worked in newspaper and televisions newsrooms in Nebraska, Colorado, Arkansas and Oregon. A former assistant golf professional, Ted still loves to sneak in a quick 9, but you're more likely these days to find him on the mountain bike trails when he's not spending time with his family. He's called Bend home for 17 years.