Winter in Bend, Oregon starts with snowfall in the mountains when locals start to feel the excitement of anticipating another beautiful winter in Central Oregon. Visitors travel from all over to experience Bend during the winter season and for visitors this year no winter trip to Bend s complete without a private helicopter tours of the stunning Cascade Range. With stunning Cascade views for miles around your winter helicopter flight will delight the senses. Whether you are bundling up to ski in the mountains or are looking to try some seasonal, local brews, there is really something for everyone of any hobby or age here. Below are a handful of ideas for things to do in Bend to make your winter here memorable.
Winter Activities in Bend, Oregon
Mount Bachelor Ski Area
Head up Cascade Lakes Highway, 22 miles from Bend, and you will find yourself at Mount Bachelor Ski Area. The drive up to the mountain is beautiful in itself and there are over 4,300 acres of lift accessible land to explore with over 100 runs. Nordic skiing is offered here as well, with over 12 groomed trails from beginner to most difficult. If you are just getting into the snow sports, there are also numerous classes and packages that are available to make your visit pleasant and fun.
Winter Wonderland Helicopter Tours
Chances are if you’re in Bend this winter you’re either on the snow, in the snow, or around the snow. But what about “above” the snow? For guests to our mountains this winter skiing, snowboarding, and snowshoe tours are on tap, but let Big Mountain Heli Tours take you and the entire family to our Winter Wonderland in the Cascades.
Our Winter Wonderland Helicopter Snow Tour is perfect for Bend visitors and locals who want to experience and explore as much of our magnificent snow-capped Cascade range as possible. The Cascades are a unique part of the Pacific Ocean’s Ring of Fire, the ring of volcanoes and associated mountains around the Pacific Ocean. In fact, all of the eruptions in the contiguous United States over the last 200 years have been from Cascade volcanoes. You’ll be front and center to see the after effects of our last “big one” at Broken Top Mountain 100,000 years ago, revealing the colorful insides of our very own complex stratovolcano and high altitude glacial lake at 10,000 feet.
Located right outside of Bend are 5 different sno-parks for activities such as, snowshoeing, cross country skiing, snowmobiling, and riding fat-tire bikes. An affordable sno-park pass can grant you access to winter fun around Bend all season long. Whether you decide to ski, snowshoe, or just enjoy the outdoors, make sure you are prepared for the winter conditions with the proper gear. Powder House and Pine Mountain Sports are two great places to rent or buy the gear you need to enjoy your time in the mountains.
For the Winter Kids
If you’re looking for some kid-friendly daytime activities during a snowy day, the Sun Mountain Fun Center is a great way to warm up those wintery bones and have some family fun. Indoor attractions offered are bowling, bumper cars, billiards, and a huge selection of arcade games. And there is no need to leave for a meal break as there is a great food menu that supports local vendors and food as well; don’t worry parents beer and wine is also an option here.
Winter Breweries in Bend
Ending your winter activities early sometimes can be easy knowing there is a great night life in Bend. If you’ve ever been here, you may know that it’s a place that’s known to have tons of great beer in town. A few breweries to check out are Deschutes, Crux, Boneyard, Monkless, Immersion, and Bend Brewing, plus many more. Great cocktails can be found at Stil Whiskey bar, O’kanes Whiskey bar, Crater Lake Spirits, The Brown Owl, and again many more. It may take more than one trip to hit all the great spots in town, but would be well worth it.
Winterfest in Bend, Oregon
The Oregon Winterfest, held in February, is one of the best weekend events to feel the energy of this town. Thousands gather for ice sculptures, fire pit competitions, live music, great food, fine art, beer, wine, and so much more. It is one of the largest gatherings that happens in Bend, and one that you won’t want to miss. A handful of runs are also held the during Winterfest, so make sure you grab your running shoes and get ready for a great weekend of winter celebration.
The High Desert Museum
Featuring 135 acres of land and over 100,000 square feet of exhibits, the High Desert Museum has been inspiring visitors since 1982. Get up close with wildlife, Native American history, World War II, travel back in time to an original sawmill, and so much more. This is a great way to spend a cold winter day that’s only five minutes south of Bend.
For more great ideas, check out our other post about great winter activities around Central Oregon.