Why Bend is Rad

Why Bend is Rad

After leaving Umqua, we went east to check out Bend, Oregon. Both of us had heard really good things and wanted to see what the craze was about.  We understood after our short 3 days of being there.  

1. The city of Bend is a pretty dope!  

We walked around Farewell Bend Park a bit, which was near the Mill District of Bend.

In town, there seemed to be lots of great places to eat, drink, shop, and hang out.  

There was even a little holiday market happening in the middle of town when we were there.  And we didn’t even explore more of the town – which I’m sure there are even cooler spots!

2.  Lots of live music options

Our friend showed us a copy of this Bend newspaper – almost every night of the week you can find some type of music playing somewhere!

We didn’t go and see any music during our time here, but if you go, I’m sure you can catch some good tunes somewhere.  

3.  LOOOADS of hikes

One hike close-by had a great viewpoint of the city and was relatively short.  

This was at Pilot Butte State Park.

This is a ‘cindercone’ (a fun vocab word that I fully enjoyed using on this hike) that you basically hike around until you read the top.  You can choose to walk the road or the dirt path to the top.  And the views do not disappoint up there.

Pretty much 360 view all over Bend and the surrounding area.  RAD.  One the information boards they explain what mountains you are seeing in the distance too.

View from Pilot Butte State Park hiking down

Another hike that we went to after leaving Bend was Tumalo Falls.  There was fresh snow from the day before when we went, so the hike ended up being 2 miles longer since the road to the trailhead was closed.  

But ‘twas a beautiful sight at the end!

There are plllllenty of others all around Bend, because there is so much beautiful nature surrounding the area.  I suggest asking a local for a good one – they always tend to know the best spots!

4.  Outdoors activities galore!

This obviously goes hand in hand with the amount of nature and outdoor recreation areas around Bend.  But, it seems they have something for everyone, for every season of the year!

When we went in January 2019, it was snow season, and there is definitely a big snowboard and ski community in Bend.  There are nearby mountains you can buy passes from for snowboarding and skiing.  When we hiked, there were loads of people cross country skiing or walking with snowshoes.

Bend also seems very bike-friendly.  We left bikes locked overnight in town and they were still there in the morning.  Lots of walking and biking paths, hikes, etc.  

Our friend was also frequenting a rock climbing gym near home – so I’m sure there are dope rock climbing spots around as well!  

All of the opportunities around there!

5.  Plentiful craft beer options

While in Bend for the weekend, there happened to be a free brewfest called Bend Resilience Beer Fest, hosted by Sierra Nevada.

You pay $10 for a cup and then you get to sample all these local IPA’s version of Resilience IPA. Also, this event was for the Campire Relief Fund. Drinking for a good cause? Hell ya!

Wish I had taken pictures of the event!  But there are also loads of microbreweries in the area.  Here is a site that I found dedicated to all of Bend’s breweries.

6.  Camping options near

Our first night in Bend, we stayed at a campground only like 15 minutes away from the center.  This was at Tumalo State Park.

An obvious google screenshot

About $20 for a standard tent spot we car camped at and $5 for a firewood bundle.  YAY, fire babay!  They also had hot showers – which was a rarety during our trip.  

This closeby campground obviously didn’t have the best views or anything, but it was a cheap place to stay close to Bend!  Other campground options can be found here. (Not my site, an official visit bend site 🙂)

And if you’re looking for how to find free places to sleep in your RV or other camping vehicles – HERE is a comprehensive guide! Happy camping!

7.  The views surrounding the city do not disappoint

Here we have a picture of the view from the deck of our friends.

Not bad at all!

I wish I would have taken more pictures, but guess that just means you’ll have to go see the sights yourself! 😋

8.  The people that live there all seem to be chill & interesting

Walking around, you just got that ‘chilled out, just-happy-to-be-there’ vibe from everyone.  

Our friend that grew up there, Claire –  we met her in Nicaragua and she is super talented, outdoorsy, hilarious, and not to mention gorgeous!  

Of course, you can’t generalize a population of people from one person, but I like to think that Bend just breeds people like Claire.  People that enjoy being active, having fun, and are thankful to live in such a dope spot of the world.  

9.  Scenic drives you can take coming & going

When we left to go to Silver Falls State Park we drove the highway 20 to the 22 (I think). It was quite beautiful to see all the mountains in the distance!

Can only image how much cooler it would be to drive close.  Do it, do it, do it, if you can!

10.  The COOLEST AIRBNB house EVER resides here!

To be honest, we did not do that much around Bend, because we got to get more of a local experience and stay with our friend, Claire.  

Her parents built this UNBELIEVABLE AirBnb house, that was all made of wood.  Actually, her father build both the AirBnb house and the house they live in – his nickname is “The Beaver” because he is always working with wood.

Not only is the house a work of art, all on its own, but it was decorated with all these beautiful colors and interesting decorations.  Lots of books to read and music to play.  Hot shower and comfy big bed.  GORGEOUS kitchen.  A deck overlooking Bend.  Tons of windows to let the sun and beautiful views in.  I really could not describe how amazing it was in words.  Sadly, I didn’t take any pictures – you’ll have to use your imagination.

I got this cute bench at the entrance though!

 When Claire’s parents allowed us to stay there we were simply happy to take a break from sleeping in the Subaru.  Then we came inside and I was shocked and amazed.  Leveled up to living like kings for a couple days!  We actually got snowed in too a bit.

Seriously, best house ever.  

Anyways – we are BEYOND grateful to have had the opportunity to even step inside this immaculate home.  Thank you, thank you, thank you for your generosity and kindness!!  

Hope you go check out what Bend has to offer & have your own adventure there! 🤙🏼😁🥾🏔🌲

And if you want to take charge of your life & plan your own long-term travel dream trip, then CLICK HERE

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