When planning a ski vacation in Bend, most visitors immediately think of Mt. Bachelor. However, there is an alternative. Hoodoo Ski area is located west of Sisters OR near Santiam Pass, about 45 miles from the Salmon Lodge. Hoodoo is priced competitively and is a great destination for families or beginners. Coming up on February 10 is Hoodoo’s Winter Carnival; it is a celebration of the fun and excitement of winter recreation in the Northwest. The day-long schedule of events includes an ax throwing booth, Frisbee golf, musical chairs, a three-legged obstacle race, a team tube race, a hula-hoop contest, a pie eating contest, a ski javelin throw, an archery contest, a Hoodoo employee snow sculpture contest and bingo.
As many of our readers know, Anne and I are passionate about kayaking, canoeing and river conservation. So were delighted when the City of Bend recently removed a small dam on the Deschutes River, replacing it with the Bend Whitewater Park. Located just downstream of the Old Mill District, the park offers three channels for the river to follow. The habitat channel is there to restore riparian life and is off-limits to human use. The passageway channel offers mild rapids and can be floated by most users. The whitewater channel includes a good-sized breaking wave and is a popular play site for kayakers and surfers. Even if you don't surf or kayak, I encourage you to head down to the park and watch the action. Located only a half a mile from the Salmon Lodge, you can walk there in 10 to 15 minutes!