Explore Oregon

Trip Planner: Redmond

Central Oregon’s oft-overlooked city is getting cool before our eyes written by Sheila Miller Not so long ago, downtown Redmond was crowded—but not in a good way. Thousands of vehicles traveling north and south on U.S. Highway 97 drove right through the middle of downtown on Fifth and Sixth streets. Semi trucks coughed plumes of diesel and horns honked all day—downtown Redmond a decade ago was not a place you lingered. But ten years can mean a lot of change, and Redmond has made great strides. Today, this is a city center that has been reborn. There are vestiges of the old city—a Sears Hometown store still holds a prominent place in the downtown core and the Historic New Redmond Hotel is undergoing what may seem like never-ending renovations. But around the corner is a city-operated ice rink, Centennial Park with its green space at the center of downtown, and…

Angel Face in Portland

Libation Vacation – Plan your next trip around your favorite spirit, wine or beer

Drinks are a natural part of life on vacation. But what if the vacation was … all about the drinks? We cooked up three perfect libation vacations—wine in the Willamette Valley, beer in and around Bend, and booze in the big city. written by Amira Makansi and Sheila G. Miller What are you looking for in a wine tasting experience? Clearly, great wine tops the list. But there are other factors, too. What about quality of service? Sweeping vistas? Ambience? And that ever-elusive je ne sais quoi?   Wine in the Willamette Valley In Oregon’s Willamette Valley, unique wineries and diverse identities abound—to such an extent it can be difficult to narrow down your tasting list. But on a weekend getaway when time is limited, choosing your top destinations is paramount. Here are five diverse establishments worth a visit on your next escape to the Willamette Valley. If you’re coming…

Oregon Resorts

Escape To An Oregon Resort

written by Sheila G. Miller In the beginning, there was Sunriver. And it was good. It was very good. Sunriver Resort, which was built as a World War II training post called Camp Abbot, became Oregon’s first big resort back in the 1960’s. It wasn’t alone, though it was certainly the best known of the group. Early resorts in Oregon include Black Butte Ranch outside of Sisters, Salishan Resort on the Oregon Coast, Tu Tu’ Tun tucked away on the Rogue River in Southern Oregon, and Resort at the Mountain in Welches (now known as Mt. Hood Oregon Resort). #1 OLD FAVORITES Sometimes glory fades. Sometimes it’s reborn again and again. At Salishan, one of Oregon’s first and most reliable resorts, that rebirth is taking place as we speak. It’s hard work keeping a coastal resort looking good—the wind and the rain of the Oregon Coast can weather even the…

The Hoxton Portland

written by Jen Stevenson If banishing the winter doldrums with a vacation (or staycation) to Stumptown is just what the doctor ordered, pack your best walking wellies and check into this hip, playful, delightfully designed new downtown Portland hotel for a long cozy weekend of binge-watching, basement bar cocktail sipping and breakfast in bed. The sixth addition to the globetrotting U.K.-based chain, on the heels of outlets in Paris and Brooklyn’s Williamsburg neighborhood, The Hoxton Portland chose to homestead in downtown’s historic Old Town/Chinatown. Set in the 1907 Grove Hotel building at the corner of busy Burnside and NW 4th Street, just inside the landmark Chinatown Gateway, it’s steps from Voodoo Donuts and Portland Saturday Market, and a short stroll from the trendy Pearl District’s shops, parks and restaurants. Adventure seekers can rent a bicycle nearby and loop around Tom McCall Waterfront Park’s riverfront trail to the Eastbank Esplanade and…

New Coastal Trail Coming Soon!

Corvallis to the sea will soon be possible, thanks to a new trail. written by Amira Makansi There is something alluring about the idea of hiking from one place to another without interruption. From the Pacific Crest to the Continental Divide to the Appalachian, hikers in America have tested their mettle against trails that span thousands of miles and traverse the breadth of the country. But you need not walk from Mexico to Canada or Georgia to Maine to achieve the sense of satisfaction that comes from crossing a great distance on your own two feet. Soon, hikers will be able to walk from the heart of the Willamette Valley to the Oregon Coast on a 60-mile stretch of uninterrupted trail. The Corvallis-to-the-Sea Trail Partnership has finished construction on the first half of a trail that will lead—as the name indicates—from downtown Corvallis through the coastal mountain range and finish…

Bozeman, Montana: An outdoor lover’s paradise

written by Katheryn Houghton There’s a reason people are discovering Bozeman. The town’s growing fast, but with fewer than 50,000 locals, Bozeman has held onto the character that comes with a small ski community framed by mountains. There are packed storefronts with places to eat, drink and find local creations, from leatherwork to plays with live symphonies. The sun rises over the Bridger Mountains and dips behind the Tobacco Roots with forty-three peaks reaching beyond 10,000 feet—what to do between those ranges is endless. For ambitious hikers, Sacajawea Peak is a 4-mile trip pared with a 2,000-foot elevation gain. Those who take on the trail are rewarded with views from the highest point in the Bridgers, Bozeman’s nearest range. Sypes Canyon Trail offers a less-steep family day hike. The 4-mile round trip weaves through a creek-fed canyon on the west side of the Bridgers and unfolds to rocky open sections…

Oregon’s Adventure Coast

written by Sheila G. Miller Growing up in the Portland area, the Northern Oregon Coast was easier to access than other coastal areas. That was where I learned that sweatshirts were beach gear and “laying out” was something for other coastal states. But in all my years as an Oregonian, I had hardly set foot on the Southern Oregon Coast except to drive through on my way elsewhere. That changed this fall, when I spent a few days in Coos Bay, North Bend and Charleston. This area of the coast, like other parts of Oregon, was greatly impacted by the timber industry. In 1947, just three years after Coos Bay gave up Marshfield as its name, The Oregonian called the city the “Lumber Capital of the World.” As Oregonians know, that came to an abrupt end in the 1980s, and the area has been searching for its next big thing…

WEEKEND WANDERINGS: SOUTHERN WILLAMETTE VALLEY

We are exploring the wonders of the Southern Willamette Valley. written by Jen Stevenson EN ROUTE Junction City, known for its popular 57-year-old summer Scandinavian Festival, also has a robust wine-tasting scene, so take a scenic detour off the interstate, rochambeau to see who gets designated driver duty, and start sipping. Sample estate pinot noirs and pinot gris at Walnut Ridge, where the 25 acres of dry-farmed vineyards are surrounded by bucolic pasture land and forest, then continue up the road to Pfeiffer Winery, a former chicken ranch and sheep farm where you can sip small-lot pinots in the peaceful water garden. A cork’s throw away, a personable flock of Katahdin-Dorper sheep graze the vineyards at rustically charming appointment-only Antiquum Farm; book the tour and tasting a few days ahead of time. Five minutes north, find lushly landscaped Brigadoon Wine Company. Uncork a bottle of riesling, unpack your picnic and…

Tidbits + To-dos

Each issue we scour the state looking for the best local products and events to share with you. Here’s our list for January and February. Black Butte Ranch Jam You know Black Butte Ranch as a perfect spot for a Central Oregon getaway. Did you know it also sells its own housemade jams? Made with Oregon strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and marionberries, they’re a great gift for the Oregon fan in your life. www.blackbutteranch.com FisherPoets Gathering Since 1998, fisherpoets and their fans have gathered in Astoria to tell stories, sing songs about the commercial fishing industry, filling the area’s taphouses, galleries and restaurants from 4 p.m. to 11 p.m. on February 23 and 24. The event also includes workshops on Friday afternoon and Saturday morning, and a Story Circle, at which fisherpoets tell oral histories and show fishing films. www.fisherpoets.org wool& Discover the magic of wool clothing with wool&, a new…

WEEKEND WANDERINGS: MID WILLAMETTE VALLEY

Exploring the Mid Willamette Valley written by Jen Stevenson EN ROUTE As you fly south for the winter (weekend), detour east of Salem for a slice of caramel apple pie at the Willamette Valley Pie Company, or meander on to charming small-town Silverton for cinnamon roll pancakes and crispy fried chicken with brown butter syrup and Sriracha honey atop a golden buttermilk waffle at Gather. After a lovely late-fall hike in Silver Falls State Park, tuck into a piping-hot smoked pork shoulder and pineapple-topped Pine & Swine pizza at The Old Oak Oven food cart. Then cross the street to Silver Falls Brewery for a pint of Catamount Trail Ale. A few miles north, in Bavarian-esque Mount Angel, Oktoberfest may be over, but you can still wash down authentic handmade German-style bratwurst, bockwurst and knockwurst with an authentic German beer at Mt. Angel Sausage Company. EAT + DRINK In the…