Hit the slopes this Friday instead of waiting in line at Walmart

By Dusty Trails

We all know the signs. The first morning you wake up with frost on the windshield of your car. The first holiday decorations at the grocery store. The first time you hear Jingle Bells on the radio–before Thanksgiving has even passed. I’m not talking about Christmas. I’m referring to the ultimate gift. The gift that truly keeps on giving. The one that’s white and powdery and falling all over town. It’s a little thing called snow.

Ski season is so close we can almost taste it–just like the turkey and cranberry sauce we’re about to consume on Thursday. It’s that wonderful time of year when we slip on our beanies and our boots, get stoked at the latest ski premier, and pick up some “Pray for Snow” from 10 Barrel on our way home from work. It’s when we dust off our helmets, wax our skis, and prepare ourselves for some delicious laps at Mt. Bachelor.

If you’re as excited as we are, then we know how important it is for you to have easy access to one of the Top Ten Ski Resorts in North America. Now get ready for some numbers: 20 is the number of minutes away Tripleknot is from Pine Marten or the Nordic Center. 10 is the number of minutes it takes to get to the newly revamped Meisner Sno-Park. 0 is the amount of time you’ll spend dealing with snow removal, landscaping, and routine maintenance, so nothing can come between you and a day in the mountains.

And infinity is the number of adventures you’ll find right in Bend’s backyard this winter, whether it be downhill skiing, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, sledding, skate skiing, cross country skiing, ice skating, or going on sled dog rides. And the whipped cream on the pumpkin pie is that you can even sink into a cozy sofa by the fire after an epic day of “shredding the pow.” Basically, Tripleknot is a snow lover’s dream come true. Even resident Terry Skjersaa thinks so.

Bend in the winter is magical. All we’re waiting on is those little white flakes to come down from the sky. Thankfully, regardless of how the weather treats us, Bachelor is set to open Friday at 9am! So kick your snow dance into high gear–and work off that Thanksgiving turkey while you’re at it.

Poling, Pedaling, and Paddling

By Dusty Trails

 

May has finally arrived. Which means athletes are scouring their garages for every piece of gear they own. Teams are coordinating their Jamaican bobsled outfits, military suits, and tutus. SUVs are loaded with kayaks, bikes and skis. The entire community is preparing for its signature event: The Pole Pedal Paddle.

The PPP on May 18 is the ultimate relay race. It starts just up the road from Tripleknot at Mt. Bachelor with an alpine leg to the exchange point at West Village Lodge. Then skate and classic skiers hit the Nordic trails for an 8 km dash to the cycling exchange, where racers enjoy a scenic 22-mile ride along Century Dive into Bend. The next leg is a 5-mile run along the Deschutes River Trail to a 1.5-mile canoe/kayak leg at Farewell Bend Park in the Old Mill District. As if all this wasn’t enough, the race ends with a .5-mile sprint along the grassy banks of the river to the finish line. Pheew! Did I forget anything? They don’t have a skydiving leg. But they might as well add one while they’re at it.

While it is Bend’s biggest community event, it’s far from being a local one. Incredible athletes from all over the country flock to this unique race. But you don’t have to be a pro to get your Pole Pedal Paddler on. You can compete individually, in pairs, and in teams. And you can be as competitive as you want. If you don’t compete, heading down to Farewell Bend to cheer the racers on and to enjoy the booths, live music, awesome food (and beer, of course), is just as much fun.

The Pole Pedal Paddle is the epitome of everything that Bend has to offer. On top of taking advantage of the awesome outdoor activities we are blessed to have in our town, the event demonstrates the strong sense of community we have built. We’ll see you out there on May 18 poling, pedaling, paddling and cheering!

What’s not to like?

By Dusty Trails

 

Last week, a little newspaper called The New York Times just included Bend in an article entitled “12 Months of Skiing, From Chile to China.” Somewhere between Chile and China, our own mountain is cited as one of the best places to ski in the month of July for its Fourth of July opening. That’s pretty cool. But the fact is, we have so much more to brag about.

 

For instance, National Geographic and Travel + Leisure magazines also recently included Mt. Bachelor on their compilations of best ski towns. Basically we’re proving what we already knew, that Bend is one of the best of the best when it comes to winter fun (and summer skiing, evidently).

 

Apparently The New York Times has a soft spot for us Bend-ites, because they published yet another piece back in April entitled, “Bend, Ore., a Brewer’s Town.” The newly expanded Deschutes Brewery downtown was the inspiration for the article, as it has become the fifth largest craft brewer in the nation and has contributed to one of the highest brewery-to-resident ratios in the country.

 

So we’ve got prime skiing and awesome beer. What else makes us so great? In a May 2011 edition of Outdoor Life magazine, Bend came in at number one on their list of America’s Top 200 Towns for Sportsmen for its “embarrassment of sporting riches.” What’s more, in a 2009 article in Mountain Bike Action magazine, Bend was named America’s Top Mountain Biking Town that “seems like it was founded just for mountain bikers.”

 

Central Oregon is not only a great place to live for humans, but for dogs, too. Every year, Dog Fancy magazine names the top “DogTowns,” and the winner for 2012 was…Bend! Rightly so. The article sites Bend as “a place where dogs both work and play, ski and swim.”

 

We were even awarded best tasting drinking water in the Pacific Northwest’s Cascade to Coast section of the American Water Works Association for its “clean, crisp and grassy” flavor with a “nice aftertaste.” Grassy? Whatever.

 

The latest writer to wax fondly about us is Nathan Borchelt who began his article in The Washington Post last month by stating, “I hate Bend, Ore.” But that’s only because he says, “No place should have it this good.” Truly, the man had nothing but positive things to say about our humble abode.

 

See for yourself what all the fuss is about at Visit Bend. Then don’t be surprised if you start bragging about it too.