Sammies and Sandos: Central Oregon’s Best Sandwiches

Sometimes after a day full of adventure, all that you crave is a simple, yet delicious, stick-to-your-ribs sandwich. (And a beer, obviously.)

Whether you call it a “sammie,” “sando,” or “sammich,” there’s an amazing sandwich waiting for you at the end of the trail in Central Oregon. Heck, even if you’re one of those weirdos who consider a hot dog a sandwich, we have you covered. For the purposes of this story, we’re not including burgers in the “sandwich” category, but rest assured there are TONS of great burgers here. (Don’t see your favorite listed? Tell us where to find the best sandwich in Central Oregon in the comments!)

In the iconic downtown Bend breezeway, the Beach Hut Deli offers a great selection of hot and cold sandwiches in a “chill” setting perfect for catching a game on TV or just people watching on Mirror Pond Plaza. Try the Surfin’ Bird with turkey, avocado, bacon, cream cheese, mayo, mustard, pickles, tomato, red onions, lettuce, Greek peppers and cheese.

In beautiful Sunriver, Sunriver Brewing‘s menu is filled with post-adventure favorites, but one of my staples is the Turkey Dip with smoked turkey breast, pepper bacon, tomato, Tillamook white cheddar on a french roll with a side of natural turkey jus. Pair it with a Fuzztail Hefe and your afternoon is golden. (You can get the same sandwich at Sunriver Brewing’s Galveston Pub in Bend too.)

Sunriver Brewing Co. Galveston Pub

Three Creeks Brewing in Sisters is a perfect rest stop after hiking up Black Butte, fishing at Camp Sherman or mountain biking the Peterson Ridge trails. And for me, there’s not a better sandwich in all of Central Oregon (or anywhere for that matter) than the legendary Chicken Bacon Tater. NBD, just your basic sandwich with grilled chicken breast, thick sliced hickory smoked bacon, fries & chipotle ranch all rolled together in a toasted pita, “Taco Style.” Yes, that’s right: THERE’S FRENCH FRIES IN THE SANDWICH! Pairs nicely with a Knotty Blonde.

The Row at Bend’s Tetherow Resort has a great pub-style menu that includes all your favorites like burgers and wings and a rotating beer menu featuring several local breweries. And while it sounds simple: sourdough bread, smoked ham, and Tillamook cheddar cheese served with daily soup – the grilled cheese is top notch (especially served with the tomato soup that’s usually available.)

Crux Fermentation Project

Crux Fermentation Project is easily one of Bend’s favorite brewpubs. The pub features three hugely popular food carts outside on the lawn. And while the pub itself has a limited menu, the Banh Mi sandwich has long been a standout dish. It’s porter-hoisin roasted pork belly, cubed ham, fresh cucumber, cilantro, do Chua, and sweet chili aioli. My colleague Kristine implores you to get EXTRA CILANTRO!

Exterior view of people on the patio at 10 Barrel on Bend, Oregon's westside
The patio at 10 Barrel Brewing’s West Side Pub.

You can find a great steak sandwich on just about every menu here these days (most here are made with locally grown beef,) but you probably won’t find a better one than the one at 10 Barrel Brewing‘s West Side pub. Know how I know? Because my wife says so and, well, she’s kind of a steak sandwich expert (or so I’ve been told.)

For an out of this world dining experience, Worthy Brewing is your place thanks to the world’s first “Hopservatory.” Founder Roger Worthington will tell you the Salmon Sando is the best in the universe: grilled Atlantic salmon, Tillamook pepper jack cheese, fresh guacamole, lettuce, tomato, pickled onion, chipotle aioli on ciabatta. (Pro tip from my colleague Kristi: Get it as a lettuce wrap.)

And finally, Brother Jons has two locations in Bend and both have great menus. You can’t go wrong though with the Cuban: Pulled pork, ham, melted swiss, sautéed onions, dill pickles & spicy brown mustard on a grilled hoagie roll. (While you’re waiting, the habanero cheese dip is worth noshing on – it’s a white wine & garlic habanero cheese sauce with house-fried yellow and blue corn tortilla chips.)

Central Oregon Vacation Rentals Offer an Affordable Home Away from Home

HomeSpun Vacation Rentals/Bend

There’s something quick, easy and consistent when choosing a hotel or destination resort for your vacation lodging.

But there’s something quirky, fun, interesting, spacious, well-appointed, private and luxurious about choosing a vacation rental home instead.

Central Oregon has more than 3,000 amazing vacation rental options, from cozy cottages near downtown to townhomes in the woods to expansive homes along the banks of the Deschutes River. They all provide a lodging opportunity that really lets you feel like a local as soon as you pull into the driveway.

Why choose a vacation rental home?

  1. More Privacy
  2. Less expensive for small groups
  3. You can save money by cooking at home
  4. Most are pet-friendly
  5. There’s often laundry on site

Granted, staying in a vacation rental isn’t the best option for every trip, especially if you’re only going to be in one spot for a couple of days. But if you’re planning a longer trip, say 3 days or more, you’ll likely get a lot of  bang for your buck in a rental home.

For example, if two couples looking for a place to stay close to downtown, the river, shopping, and tons of dining, they could split the cost of a nice 2-bedroom rental home for five days in late June for about $70/person/night. Or, go a little more upscale and rent a house (with a hot tub) on one of Central Oregon’s 30 golf courses for $109/night.That’s considerably cheaper than some rates for hotels during peak season here.

Vacation rental home in Sunriver, Oregon
Bennington Properties/Sunriver

Some rental homes amenities include hot tubs and BBQ grills in addition to cruiser or mountain bikes to check out the sights and sounds around Bend, Sunriver and beyond. Many of the homes are situated within well-established neighborhoods, lending themselves to a “local’s vibe.”

What else makes vacation rental homes so great? Here are a few highlights:

Bennington Properties in Sunriver might be the most dog-friendly vacation rental company on the planet! Not only do they offer an off-leash play area at the management offices, but there’s a complementary dog wash there too so you can clean up the pup after a day of adventuring. Stock up on provisions at Country Market in The Village at Sunriver or grab a bite and brew at Sunriver Brewery.

DiamondStone Guest Lodges in Central Oregon

At Diamondstone Guest Lodges in La Pine, you can stay way off the beaten path.

This rural resort has a wide variety of lodging including a bed & breakfast, a Log Cabin and more, including an upstairs “Treetop Lounge” that can host events. The bed & breakfast has a 3.5-acre meadow for small outdoor weddings. The resort is also home to a 3-day summer music and arts festival known as “The Newberry Event.”

DiamondStone also hosts MOTOFANTASY Motorcycle Rentals.  Experienced riders can choose from over a dozen unique bikes to ride for a day or a week.

Cold Springs Resort

Tucked beneath a canopy of Ponderosa and Tamarack and only steps from the spring-fed Metolius River in Camp Sherman the cabins at Cold Springs Resort offer the perfect family retreat. Hiking, biking, and world-class fly-fishing opportunities abound and all are within walking distance. Bring the kids, the dog and let yourself and your family unwind.

Cold Springs Resort was originally a dairy and the springs were used to keep the fresh milk cool before distribution.

Elk Lake sailboats in Central Oregon
Elk Lake Resort

Elk Lake Resort, on the Cascade Lake Scenic Byway, offers rustic or upscale cabins just steps away from one of the region’s most popular recreation spots. Grill on the deck or head on down to the lodge before renting a canoe for the afternoon. There’s often live music at the resort as well.

Vacation rental home at Tetherow in Central Oregon
Tetherow Vacation Home

Looking for destination resort amenities, but vacation rental lodging? Sunriver Resort, Tetherow, Black Butte Ranch and Pronghorn all offer vacation rental options. Tetherow has the region’s first vacation rental neighborhood called “Cairn,” which includes 4 and 5 bedroom homes along the award-winning golf course.

*These are just a couple of examples and rates will vary, but they are actual examples, from one of Central Oregon’s more popular vacation rental companies. 

Bend’s Worthy Brewing Expands to the Stars with New Hopservatory

Bend’s growing beer scene has seen numerous breweries expand facilities and pubs to accommodate their skyrocketing popularity.

But Worthy Brewing in Bend is taking its expansion to a new, intergalactic level.

Bend’s only East Side brewpub this spring opened the nation’s first “Hopservatory,” featuring a 50-foot tower that houses a 16-inch RCOS-based Ritchey-Chrétien telescope. Not familiar with that particular model? You can see REALLY far and REALLY clearly into the sky.

The Hopservatory will be run in partnership with the Sunriver Nature Center/Oregon Observatory, who will provide stargazing tour guides to help visitors navigate the skies above.

“Our goal is to raise scientific literacy and educate our visitors about big and unwieldy concepts like scale, size, time, distance, and speed in our solar system and beyond,” Worthy owner Roger Worthington says.

There’s open house viewing on Thursday and Sunday nights from 7 to 9 p.m and Saturday nights from 7 to 10 p.m. with resident sky guy, Grant Tandy. No need to register. Just show up the night of and take the stairs directly to the 3rd floor Hopservatory.

There’s a $5 fee for the tours but all of the proceeds will go to support science literacy programs and initiatives through the Worthy Garden Club, the brewery’s non-profit foundation. (Kids 5 and under are free.)

worthy brewing
Worthy Brewing’s Transporter Room

Additionally, Worthy has unveiled the Transporter Room, Hop Mahal Banquet Hall, the Beermuda Triangle private bar and the Star Bar balcony pub with access to the observatory and amazing views of the Central Oregon sunset. All the new projects are part of a 3,800-square-foot expansion collectively dubbed Beertopia.

worthy brewing
Worthy Brewing’s Hop Mahal banquet room

The Hopservatory joins Worthy’s on-site gardens and greenhouse that grow more than 20 types of hops and other herbs used throughout the brewery’s beer and food menu.

“From our state-of-the-art solar panels to our spent hop recycling program, we try to keep our restaurant and brewery as sustainable as possible,” Worthington said. “This includes our grounds and gardens. Our landscape was designed to conserve water and support a healthy population of pollinators. We grow fresh herbs, greens, and veggies for the kitchen year-round in our high-tech greenhouse and raised garden beds, avoiding the use of harsh fertilizers and pesticides.”

Worthy’s Hop Garden/Courtesy David Zinn & OregonBeerGrowler.Com

Where to Apres Ski in Central Oregon


The early season snow conditions at Mt. Bachelor have been spectacular so far this year – and we think it’s going to continue well into winter. So the most important question to ask yourself this season is: where should you apres ski after a stellar day at the mountain?

That’s a great question, by the way, with a bunch of great answers.

One of the newest and best apres ski options in Bend also happens to be one of the closest options to Mt. Bachelor. The Row at Tetherow has a great vibe, cool views and a beer and food menu that’s second to none. I’ve written about this in previous blog posts, but if you’re a fan of buffalo wings – try the ghost pepper wings. They’re as hot as they sound, but oh-so-tasty!

The Row at Tetherow

And just a little farther down the road, check out Bistro 28 inside the Athletic Club of Bend. Warm up in front of the historic Pilot Butte Inn fireplace, ACB membership not required. Enjoy 1/2 off any pizza with the purchase of an entree or a free dessert with a purchase of an entree. Open at 4:30 Monday thru Friday and 3:30 on Saturday and Sunday

A little farther down the road you’ll find The Lodge – one of the Cascade Lakes Brewery locations in Central Oregon. This is a hugely popular joint for post-ski beers and food. Founded in 1994 in Redmond, Cascade Lakes is one of the stalwarts of Central Oregon’s craft beer scene. Check out Happy Hour Monday-Friday from 4 to 6 p.m. for $3 off apps and reduced prices on the pub’s imperial pints. (That’s 20 oz. of beer!)

Cascade Lakes Brewery Lodge

In downtown Bend, you’ll always find a fun apres ski crowd at Deschutes Brewery. The popularity of Bend’s oldest brewpub used to mean it was tough to get a table or seat at the bar, but the restaurant expanded a few years ago creating room for everyone even on the busiest of nights. The beer menu is filled with pub-exclusive creations and the food can lead more toward fine dining than bar food. That said, Deschutes’ fish & chips are among the best in Oregon.

deschutes pub winter
Deschutes Brewery

Other great options downtown include Pizza Mondo (named Bend’s best pizza every year since it opened in 1996,) the Bend Brewing Company, where you’ll be treated to live music, an award-winning selection of beers and hearty food that include some of the best wings in Central Oregon. For a more upscale vibe, check out  900 Wall, Zydeco or 5 Fusion and Sushi Bar – all are welcoming of folks in ski gear so don’t worry about having to change before grabbing a bite.

You’ll also find several options at one location at McMenamin’s Old St. Francis School in downtown Bend. The campus features four pubs, a Turkish soaking pool and a fun patio area with a fire pit to relive some of the epic moments on the mountain earlier in the day.


Other popular spots in Bend include Crux Fermentation Project, 10 Barrel Brewing and Worthy Brewing – all feature great craft beers, tasty menus (Crux is home to a couple of fun food carts as well) and large outdoor areas with fire pits to hang out around.


For those of you staying in Sunriver, you’ll find a bunch of great apres ski options both at the resort itself and just down the road at The Village at Sunriver. Enjoy great food and drinks at Carson’s American Kitchen or The Living Room or Twisted River Tavern – all located at Sunriver Resort’s main lodge. The new restaurants have quickly become a popular place for locals and visitors alike with their diverse, Pacific Northwest-inspired menus.

Twisted River Tavern, Sunriver Resort
Twisted River Tavern, Sunriver Resort

At The Village at Sunriver, snowriders flock to Sunriver Brewing Co. for a huge selection of craft beers and a menu filled with hearty items perfect after a long day at Bachelor. (There’s also a cool Sunriver Brewing pub on Galveston Ave. in Bend.) And, of course, you can’t go wrong with the traditional pub favorites at Village Bar and Grill.

sunriver brewery in bend
Sunriver Brewery, Galveston Pub

Central Oregon’s Culinary Scene Part of Oregon Bounty Campaign

crux food image

Central Oregon has become a special place among foodies who recognize the region’s delicious focus on sustainable, farm to table menus that utilize locally-produced meats, cheeses and produce.

The region is taking after Oregon as a whole where restaurants are thriving with unique dishes not just Northwest inspired, but Northwest grown.

This fall you can experience the state’s culinary creations in a fun new way thanks to Oregon Bounty, a Travel Oregon-created celebration of the fresh, local artisan food and drink that make Oregon a true culinary destination.

Following the success of the Oregon 7 Wonders Campaign, foodies can now experience those 7 Wonders through food and drink with an Oregon Bounty Passport. The passport features three restaurants in each region, chosen by some of the state’s finest chefs. Just grab a passport at one of the Oregon Welcome Centers across the state or at any of the restaurants chosen to be part of the campaign. Then, all you have to do is eat your way across the state picking up stickers from the restaurants along the way.

Central Oregon’s featured restaraunts were chosen by Chef Paul Losch of Ruddick/Wood in Newberg who made his first trip to Smith Rock just this last spring. Crux Fermenation Project in Bend, Terrebonne Depot and Sisters Bakery are among 21 Oregon restaurants chosen. All of them embody the idea of Oregon Bounty.

crux food image 2

Crux Fermenation Project

One of Bend’s most popular breweries, Crux also features one of the best menus in town – despite not even having what most would consider a “full kitchen.” Wraps, sandwiches (including paninis) soups and salads are the stars of the menu at Crux. No burgers, no fries – just simply delicious food. (Always ask about the soup of the day because there’s a chance it will be Chicken Curry and it’ll be the best thing you eat that day.)

But perhaps one of the most unique aspects to Crux’s dining scene isn’t what’s on the menu but what’s outside the actual restaurant. Parked on a gravel lot adjacent to the pub sit two popular food carts – El Sancho Tacos and Broken Top Barbecue. Locals will tell you the El Sancho street style tacos are among the best in Bend and there’s always a line outside Broken Top’s bright red truck. The food carts are as much a part of Crux as the brewery’s delicious Outcast IPA.

sisters bakery pies
Sisters Bakery pies

Sisters Bakery

In small towns across the state there’s always that one place people will say “oh, you MUST go.” In Sisters, the Sisters Bakery is that place. For starters, it’s a real bakery with real people in the back making really delicious baked goods. They’re making 13 kinds of doughnuts, several breads (old fashioned cinnamon bread comes out of the oven first thing in the morning) along with cakes, pies and cookies that would make your own grandma’s mouth water. It’s the go-to folks for mountain bikers heading out on to the Peterson Ridge Trail System and for folks from Bend heading over the pass for weekend football games in Eugene or Corvallis.

Terrebonne Depot

Terrebonne Depot

Just minutes from Smith Rock State Park – one of the 7 Wonders of Oregon and the birthplace of American sport climbing – Terrebonne Depot has fed many a hungry family after a day of hiking, horesback riding or sightseeing at Smith Rock.

Fresh local ingredients are served inside a 100 year old train depot or outside on an expansive deck – where views of Smith Rock and the Cascade Mountains are unmatched.

Knowing their clientel might be on their way to Smith Rock, all of Terrebonne Depot’s menu items are available packaged to go. They offer picnic baskets filled with fresh sandwiches and salads and include a trail map highlighting scenic spots to stop and enjoy your meal. For the more adventurous, picnic baskets are also availabel as backpacks

Get Social

You might not want to share any of the meals you’re having at these amazing restaurants, but the least you can do is share your experience via social media! Use the hashtag #centraloregonbounty and #traveloregon and you could win some cool prizes like a growler. You can find us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

Central Oregon Getaway for Back to School Bargains

tetherow balcony shot 2
Tetherow Lodges

I don’t know about you, but I love a good fall shopping trip. It’s an excuse for one last summer escape before daily life gets hectic again. If you’re planning to visit Central Oregon, might I recommend a stay at Tetherow Resort and a weekend of shopping – tax free shopping – in Bend? (Bring the family..leave them at home and make it a girls trip – your call. )

Tetherow is Central Oregon’s newest boutique hotel, offering 50 deluxe rooms that overlook one of the nation’s Top 100 golf courses and a national forest that’s home to mountain biking and running trails. You’re also just a short distance from all the hiking and biking to be had along the Deschutes River Trail.

Old Mill District Shops - Bend, Oregon
Bend’s Old Mill District

Along with outdoor fun and relaxation at Tetherow, save room for a day of shopping in Bend’s Old Mill District. This outdoor mall along the Deschutes River has terrific finds at stores such as Banana Republic, Gap and American Eagle. Make sure to seek out one-of-a-kind treasures at local favorites like Vanilla Urban Threads and Nashelle jewelry too. (Here’s a link to check out the weekly specials at Old Mill shops.)

Once there, have lunch on the patio of Greg’s Grill. Enjoy Pacific Northwest cuisine a s you watch paddleboarders and kayakers float down the river while the sun’s rays highlight the majestic Cascades. It’s truly a serene setting. Afterwards stroll down to Ben & Jerry’s ice cream shop for a warm weather treat.


After lunch, head a little farther south in Bend to find some great back-to-school deals at the Bend Factory Stores. There’s a Carter’s for the little ones, Eddie Bauer, Izod, Columbia Nike and Van Heusen and much more in the open-air mall. Treat yourself while you’re there to a little decadence at The Rocky Mountain Chocolate Factory.

You’ll also find some good deals at the Cascade Village Shopping Center, home to Famous Footwear, Dick’s Sporting Goods, Rue 21, Ross, Best Buy and more.

After a full day of retail therapy and indulgence, head into downtown Bend for some dinner. You can go upscale at 5 Fusion and Sushi Bar, home to two-time James Beard Award finalist Chef Joe Kim – or find a brewpub with award-winning craft beers and amazing food. (You can’t go wrong with Deschutes Brewery or Bend Brewing Company, two local’s favorites.)

Chef Joe Kim, sushi, Bend, Oregon
Chef Joe Kim of 5 Fusion and Sushi Bar

So go on, you deserve it. Get out there and enjoy all the beauty and fun that only Central Oregon can provide. Make your travel reservations now. With all the back-to-school deals going on, it’s the perfect time for a little spree!

tetherow family biking

Black Butte Ranch’s “Cool” New Look is a Hit – Lakeside Pool Now Open

With it’s majestic mountain views, two world-class golf courses and multitude of outdoor activities, Black Butte Ranch near Sisters has long been a favorite family vacation destination.

So when the resort opened a new lakeside pool area, bistro and rec center during the summer of 2015, it was just adding to an already spectacular setting.

Black Butte Ranch
Black Butte Ranch lakeside pool

Spectacular indeed. The pool boasts a view unlike any other in Central Oregon – so close to the Cascades that it’s as though you can reach out to touch them while sitting beneath your umbrella sipping a fruity drink.

To read more on the revamped resort, check out this story from The Oregonian.

Black Butte Ranch
Black Butte Ranch lakeside pool bistro

Hopless in Central Oregon: Experience Scenic Cideries and Vino with a View


In an area dominated by craft beer, you might be wondering is there anything else on tap? The answer is, ‘Yes’. Central Oregon is home to award winning cideries and wineries and with postcard-worthy views from their tasting rooms – you won’t be disappointed.

Named after the Three Sisters, Faith Hope and Charity Vineyards is just over 30 miles from Bend. It’s hard to complain about the drive though when furry faces from the Alpaca farm nearby greet you right before you turn onto the property.

The tasting room is in a huge white barn. As soon as you get a glass of vino you can either sit and relax on the patio by the pond or go explore the 15-acre vineyard. The views at Faith, Hope and Charity are larger than life, but take a closer look and you’ll find beauty everywhere.

faith hope and charity 1

From the country to Bend’s Old Mill District, craft beverages know no boundaries. Atlas Cider serves up a good time in more ways than one at their taproom. From outdoor games to an indoor arcade and pool table, you’ll want to hang out here for a while.

Not only can you taste their entire line of ciders, Atlas has fridges stocked with ciders from all around the Northwest and beyond. With unique touches just about everywhere you glance, it’s impossible not to want to share this relatively new spot with everyone you know.

atlas cider 2

A winery on the side of a highway might not sound idyllic, but with panoramic views of Smith Rock and the Cascades, that’s exactly what Maragas Winery is.

Doug Maragas uses old world techniques passed down from his family to craft unique wines on his 40-acre plot of land between Redmond and Madras. The vineyard takes advantage of the unique microclimate here to create European varietals along with French American hybrids. Maragas and Faith Hope & Charity make up part of the new Central Oregon Wine Trail.

The toughest choice you’ll have to make out here is whether to enjoy your wine inside the barrel room, outside on the patio or while playing bocce ball in their court.

From craft cider in Bend to relaxed wineries in the country — these hopless options will hit the spot on so many levels.

Maragas Winery in Culver

How to Beat the High Desert Heat

The SHARC Aquatic Center in Sunriver, Oregon
SHARC aquatic center in Sunriver.

During the dog days of summer, one of your best options to beat the heat is to head up to the high lakes and splash around. But when you’re on vacation with the family sometimes all you want to do is go and relax at the pool. Luckily, Central Oregon has a handful of great places to soak up the sun in between cooling off in the water.

The Sunriver Homeowners Aquatic and Recreation Center (SHARC) is a village of water. It has indoor and outdoor pools, water slides, a lazy river, hot tubs and plenty of space for kids to splash and play.  If surfing is in your past, present or future, try Mavericks indoor wave rider. You’ll emerge either soaking wet or as dry as local surfing legend Gerry Lopez (a Bend resident, by the way) riding a curl.

A relatively new addition to Sunriver Resort is The Cove. The] swimming and outdoor recreation facility has a giant zero-entry pool and hot tub, private cabanas, a waterslide, nature discovery area, lakeside trails and a spacious deck and lawn. Need a bite to eat? The Spotted Frog serves poolside beverages and fare.

sunriver cove

Right in the middle of Bend, the Juniper Swim and Fitness Center is a cool water oasis that offers a 50-meter outdoor pool (domed in winter for four-season use) and its indoor 25-meter pool. There’s a fun little water recreation park outside too with shallow water and lots of fun features for the kids, including a water slide that’s open to big kids too.

After you drag the kids from antique shop to antique shop in downtown Redmond, reward them with an hour or so at the splash park on the corner of Evergreen and 7th. It’s the perfect place to let the kids run around to cool off – and there’s a coffee hut on site so you can refuel for the rest of your day’s adventures.

Black Butte Ranch recently opened a new lakeside pool with a year-round outdoor hot tub and new rec center. The pool offers outside dining and poolside service with a nearby playground. As far as views go, you can’t get any better than this when lounging poolside.

The pool at Black Butte Ranch near Bend, Oregon

On the Warm Springs reservation, Kah-Nee-Ta Resort boasts a 184-foot slide into its hot springs mineral pool that is twice the size of an Olympic pool and is cooled in the summer and heated in the fall. Couple that with a night under the stars in an authentic tee pee and you’ll have a weekend to remember.

View of pool at The Village of Kah-nee-ta Resort in Warm Springs, Oregon

If you’re looking for a little more adrenaline rush while cooling off, Sun Country Tours offers the famous Big Eddy Thriller whitewater trip for families in addition to other rafting adventures. Ouzel Outfitters also provides guided excursions including half/full day trips, multi-day trips or custom adventures tailored to you and your family.

Rafting the Deschutes River near Sunriver, Oregon

Want to chill out a bit more while staying cool? Head up to the high lakes. Elk Lake Resort has a restaurant, camping, rental canoes, boats and more for you to get out on the water. You can also rent a stand-up paddleboard in town at Tumalo Creek Kayak and Canoe and take it up to Sparks Lake – Outside Magazine named Central Oregon the top spot for SUPing in the world! South of Bend, check out Paulina Lake Lodge in the Newberry National Volcanic Monument.

SUP at Sparks Lake - Central Oregon