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The New Year Is the Perfect Time to Start Planning New Adventures

Kick your year off and open your calendar to book one of these Oregon experiences.

Presented by Travel Lane County December 27, 2022

 

Oregon Coast

Day of Adventure - Sandboarding in Florence

1. Visit the largest mainland sea cave just north of Florence. Sea Lion Caves offers a tour of the massive cave 200 feet below the cliff, where hundreds of sea lions make their homes. 

2. Further up the coast, visit Heceta Head Lighthouse, a historic 100-year-old working lighthouse. This lighthouse remains the brightest light on the Oregon Coast and stands 205 feet above sea level, offering sweeping views of the beach below and miles of ocean.

3. Thrill-seekers won’t want to miss the Oregon Dunes National Recreational Area, where miles of sky-high sand dunes are the perfect playground for dune buggies, ATVs, and sandboarding. 

Winter at the Heceta Head Lighthouse B&B

Where to Stay: For seaside views, check out Driftwood Shores and the Heceta Head Lighthouse Bed and Breakfast. Or stay in historic Florence, close to cozy restaurants, shops, and the Siuslaw River.

Cascade Mountains

1. It isn’t 1994 anymore (unfortunately) and we say you should go chasing waterfalls. Head up the McKenzie River and discover Sahalie Falls (featured in the 1993 movie Homeward Bound, for another throwback.) Take a loop trail from Sahalie Falls to Koosah Falls before heading further up river to discover majestic Proxy Falls. Further south in Oakridge and Westfir, check out Salt Creek Falls, a 286-foot single-drop falls you can view from above. Get in a little more adventure by taking the trail from there to Diamond Creek Falls, 

Diamond Creek Falls Trail

2. Not far from Diamond Creek Falls, you can get a taste of the Pacific Crest Trail from a trailhead at Willamette Pass. If you’re looking to do some overnight backpacking, this section winds north past Waldo Lake, the Three Sisters Mountains, and Dee Wright Observatory, to the McKenzie River area. Or you can always do a shorter, out-and-back version of the trail that lets you decide exactly how much hiking you want to do.

3. Be sure to put Clear Lake in the McKenzie River area on your list. This crystal clear, bright blue lake allows you to see over 200 feet into the watery depths, where a preserved forest haunts the lakebed. 

Where to stay: In the McKenzie River area, cabins and lodges are abundant, and many properties offer riverside views. In Oakridge, stay at the Westfir Lodge, with cozy rooms, gear rentals, and a market to keep you fueled up for your adventures.

Eugene, Springfield and the Willamette Valley

1. On par (at least geographically) with France, the South Willamette Valley is home to an abundance of award-winning wineries. From clusters of urban wine bars to vineyard tasting rooms with scenic views, there are plenty of places to relax with an incredible glass of wine.

2. Home to the University of Oregon and known as TrackTown USA, Eugene is a sports lover's dream. Come for the Prefontaine Classic or the USATF Outdoor Championships at the reimagined Hayward Field, home to history-making track and field moments through the decades, including last year's World Athletics Championships. Autzen Stadium, home to the Oregon Ducks, is another fan favorite, known for enthusiastic crowds and great views from the stadium.

Currin Covered Bridge

3. Discover the Covered Bridges Scenic Bikeway in Cottage Grove (also known as the Covered Bridges Capital of the West) which offers six historic covered bridges on a 36-mile paved bike path. If you are a covered bridge romantic you’ll rejoice that the county has 20 covered bridges in all, each one its own nostalgic beauty. Combine touring the bridges with forays to small farms, vineyards and waterfall hikes.

Where to stay: Lodging is close to great restaurants and eateries plus many recreational, artistic, cultural and shopping options in the Eugene and Springfield metro areas. Tuck into cozy vacation rentals or sweet bed and breakfasts in wine country or in the smaller charming communities of Creswell and Cottage Grove.

For more adventures to liven up 2023, visit EugeneCascadesCoast.org. 

 

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