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Trip To Bend, OR in late October

Frederick, MD
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Trip To Bend, OR in late October

We are travelling to Bend/Sunriver for a week at the end of October. We will be flying into Seattle to meet up with family and driving from there. I would like a recommendation for the best route to take. We have considered driving along the Gorge and then south from The Dalles, or heading further south on I5 before heading east.

Our number one priority is good roads since we'll just be in a passenger car. Second on the list is scenery, with travel time coming third.

Any recommendations would be appreciated!

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Bend
Bend
Central Oregon, OR
Sunriver
Sunriver
Central Oregon, OR
Seattle
Seattle
Washington
Portland, Oregon
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1. Re: Trip To Bend, OR in late October

It's kind of a toss up, really. If you do go the Gorge route, head south at Hood River on OR 35 instead of at The Dalles. OR 35 takes you up and around the east side of Mt. Hood (detour up to Timberline Lodge), before dropping down onto the high desert of central Oregon. Interesting scenery along the route, including Crooked River Gorge.

I usually prefer taking OR 22 east from Salem, though, which takes you through rolling farmlands and forests, along the Santiam River past Detroit Reservoir and up over the Santiam Pass. Best parts are the views of mountain peaks: Jefferson, Washington, Three Sisters, and Three-fingered Jack. I expect you'd also want to stop in the town of Sisters, and if you've time, possibly some other sights along the way.

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Timberline Lodge
Timberline Lodge
1,097 Reviews
Timberline Lodge, OR
Oregon
Oregon
United States
Salem
Salem
Oregon
Washington Park
Washington Park
1,251 Reviews
Portland, OR
Bend Three Sisters Inn & Suites
Bend Three Sisters Inn...
318 Reviews
Bend, OR
Oregon/Washington
Destination Expert
for Portland, Sunriver
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11,426 posts
97 reviews
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2. Re: Trip To Bend, OR in late October

I echo mistletoe. When we lived in the Seattle area and would head down to Sunriver, we would take I-5 then cut over on to 84 to Hood River and then head down. But I like the scenery better via Santiam Pass. You could take one route going down and another route home, and that would get you some different, but fantastic scenery.

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Seattle
Seattle
Washington
Sunriver
Sunriver
Central Oregon, OR
Chicago, Illinois
Destination Expert
for Bend
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1,653 posts
20 reviews
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3. Re: Trip To Bend, OR in late October

We came home from a weekend at the Gorge (Carson, WA) via Hood River and Hwy 35. In a few weeks the fall colors should be spectacular. That road is also called the "Fruit Loop" and many produce stands were open so we stopped in for some favorites - honeycrisp apples, fresh peaches, and dried cinnamon apples from the Draper Girls. Not sure if they will still be open when you pass through, though.

I prefer the scenery along the Santiam Pass, between Salem and Sisters. Are you planning to drive back to Seattle after your visit? If so then maybe you could drive down via the Gorge and Hood River, and back via Salem?

The only route I would definitely NOT recommend is taking I-90 east, then south via 97. Currently the Biggs bridge is closed and you would have to take a detour to one of the other bridges.

Before you go, definitely check road conditions at www.tripcheck.com as weather and other factors can change quickly this time of year. We got our first snow in the mountains over the weekend so it's possible the passes could also have snow by the time you travel.

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Salem
Salem
Oregon
Seattle
Seattle
Washington
Frederick, MD
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4. Re: Trip To Bend, OR in late October

Thank you to all three of you for the advice. We are driving to/from Seattle so we will be able to take both routes, weather permitting. And thanks for the idea about checking road conditions! I'm really looking forward to our vacation - my first trip to Bend.

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Seattle
Seattle
Washington
Hillsboro, Oregon
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5. Re: Trip To Bend, OR in late October

We have been in Sunriver many times the last week of October for our anniversary. We have seen a little snow everytime but nothing that was enough to make anything unsafe. The last time we were there at that time we left on a Sunday- after going to the Lodge for brunch .( I suggest this if you are there on a Sunday. Call ahead and reserve a table by the window.) A lady in the lodge office looked on Tripcheck for us as we were heading out and we saw there was snow over Santiam Pass. We always go that route and the snow was not enough to stop us. Just enough to make us slow down and enjoy the scenery even more! We have done the other route- once. We much prefer Santiam Pass. Stop at Suttle Lake right outside of Sisters. It is lovely.

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Sunriver
Sunriver
Central Oregon, OR
Chicago, Illinois
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for Bend
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6. Re: Trip To Bend, OR in late October

Hey everyone, just thought you would like to know that we are getting the first snow of the season... NOW. I already have an inch of white in my yard (SE Bend).

Can't believe it's already winter...

But since this is Central Oregon it could be back in the 70's as soon as this weekend. You just never know this time of year, so it's good to be prepared!

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Oregon
Oregon
United States
7. Re: Trip To Bend, OR in late October

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