Westward Ho – Bend, Oregon!

posted in: Family and Friends | 4

Oh, the packing! Three weeks with temperatures ranging from the 30s to the 70s – just bring everything that fits in the suitcases, 2 checked bags and two carry-ons. We left for the airport on May 1st at 5:15 am and arrived in Redmond, Oregon at 1:00 pm where Tim and Amanda picked us up.

Leaving from Denver – quite the view out of the window.
May 1st and there is snow on those mountain peaks.
As the plane began the descent to Redmond, Oregon, the terrain changed. Looks like there are pines everywhere.
Bend, Oregon is a small city on the Deschutes River (pronounced duh·shoots) with the Cascade Mountain Range, almost all volcanic in origin, to the west. Bend is known as an “outdoor lover’s paradise” and we can quickly learned why.

May 2

Tim and Amanda had reservations to play pickle ball so we went along to watch. We are pickle ball curious after hearing a lot about the game, here and there. We thought it was mostly for seniors but at the Widgi Creek Golf Center there were plenty of younger folks like Tim and Amanda playing. One of their foursome didn’t show up, so guess who got to try a little pickleballing(??) We discovered we liked it! And then discovered there are simply no pickle ball courts near us at home (that we could find on a google search.)

After pickle ball and lunch, we headed off to Mt. Bachelor, one of the Pacific Northwest’s largest ski areas and a volcano that last erupted 8,000 years ago. As a year-round destination, Mt. Bachelor boasts nearly 4,300 acres of skiable terrain, 360 degrees of skiing off the summit, and 3,365 feet of total vertical, and 370 inches of snow each year.

If you look closely you can see the lifts going up the mountain.
He had to make a snowball, especially since we had so little snowfall this winter in Connecticut.
There were other mountains in the distance. This is either Three Sisters or Broken Top. Wish I could remember which!
The parking lot at Mt. Bachelor is rimmed by plowed (or snow blown) dingy snow. Tim and Amanda’s car gives a better perspective of just how massive that snow was. We couldn’t visit some other mountains because access roads were still blocked by winter snow.

The day wasn’t over yet. A short rest back at the house and we were off again. Tim is a beer connoisseur, a true lover of beer. We enjoy beer, too, although we are not at all the expert he is. Bend is known as the brewing capitol of Oregon with over 30 breweries in the town.

We walked from the house into downtown Bend to the Bend Brewing Company. The brewery was established in 1995 and is the second oldest brewery in Bend, Oregon. We sat outside to enjoy the deck and parklike setting along the Deschutes River. Yes, quite a contrast to our earlier snowy visit to Mt. Bachelor!

I do love a flight of beers. Making a decision is so much easier when you can try six little ones. Although six little ones do add up to something larger!
Delicious beers and sweet potato fries.
What a setting on a gorgeous day.

This first full day in Bend was not over yet. Next we walked to  McMenamin’s Pub and Brewing Company (Brewery #2) McMenamin’s is a family-owned company in the Pacific Northwest that serves their own handcrafted beer, wine, cider, spirits and coffee with pub fare. They choose and then revitalize historic buildings turning them into hotels, bars, restaurants, gardens, soaking pools, spas, breweries, movie theaters, art, history, hidden rooms, fires, and fun. 

In 2004, McMenamins transformed the Old St. Francis School, in downtown Bend, from a 1936 Catholic schoolhouse to a hotel complete with classrooms-turned-lodging rooms, a pub, brewery, a movie theater, private meeting/event space, live music bookings, and a soaking pool. 
The grounds around the exterior were landscaped and charming. The windows are evidence of the old school. Any teacher can recognize that original purpose.
The pub inside.
This part was just a little weird. As we walked through part of the building, the part that must have been the hotel, we peaked into this space. Quite the “pool” area, isn’t it?

And that was just our first day in Bend with Tim and Amanda!

4 Responses

  1. Ellen R Seltzer

    hi there…did i know you were going to oregon? i thought you were off on a boat trip…missed you at book club but am so glad to read you were doing something exciting and different…looks like a lot of fun…never been to oregon but it’s on our list! harry wants to do crater lake and then oregon after flying into san francisco…a trip for the year after next…just so you know there are pickle ball courts here…lots in fact!
    keep us posted on your travels and adventures and stay well! 🙂

    • watsons

      We started our trip in Bend and then went to Alaska. I have so many photos to review and blog posts to write. Going to take awhile!
      Do you play pickleball? We are intrigued by it. So where are those courts????

  2. Gwynn Sterken

    We have a few friends in Bend although we have never been there. Hear it’s lovely. Jim and I love pickleball and so do Tim and Stefanie. I hope you can find a place to play at home.

    • watsons

      Bend is really amazing. I can see why Tim and Amanda chose it.

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