Highway to Hoeftland

Adventures with Kristin & Mike

Photo Credit: John Williams

Photo Credit: John Williams

My heart starts quickening, and I’m feeling excited, as I’m reading yet another cool article about a place on my radar.

“Mike, would you like to visit Bend, Oregon?” I ask with growing enthusiasm.

He looks over at me, with an eyebrow raised. “Why do you ask?” he says.

“Because I’ve heard so many great things about Bend, it’s important we check it out!” I reply.

“You grew up in Oregon. Shouldn’t you know what Bend is like?” he asks incredulously. “Besides, isn’t Bend a really small town, far away from bigger cities? I tend to get bored in small towns. I need things to do.”

Photo Credit:  Matthew Hickey

Photo Credit: Matthew Hickey

Well, that’s a good point, actually. I scratch my head, wondering why I can’t remember much about the Central Oregon town, a few hours from where I was born. The only thing I can remember is that my uncle, Jerry, has lived there forever. We used to go visit him from time to time. I can picture Jerry’s house and big yard. He lives up against some old lava beds, if I recall correctly. However, I can’t picture the downtown, the outdoor activities, or the Deschutes river at all. Perhaps I’ve been away from Oregon for too long.

Or maybe I’m unfamiliar with Bend because it’s changed and grown so much from last time I was there. When I was much younger, there were only about 20,000 residents. Now, nearly 80,000 people call Bend home; I don’t think we can call Bend a small town anymore. On the other hand, maybe my blinders were on when I lived there. Bend was too close to home and I accidentally overlooked it.

No matter the reason, it has my full attention now.

I started noticing many positive articles about Bend over the past couple of years. National publications, such as the Washington Post, are very upbeat about Bend (well, in a jealous sort of way). Gone with the Wynns (one of my favorite RV travel sites) says it’s great. My friends and family like Bend a lot, and the pictures of Bend are awesome—green trees, a river, nearby lakes, mountains, breweries, high-quality restaurants, charming homes, a quaint downtown, independent and local shops, parks galore, and the famous old mill district and bridges, to name just a few.

It’s in my heart now. I yearn to see Bend again.

Therefore, I explain to Mike what I’ve learned, and surprisingly, his interest peaks too. Mike has always been a curious person and he loves to travel to new places.

“Well, Bend does sound interesting. Okay, let’s do it.” he says. He nods thoughtfully and goes back to reading his newspaper.

“Okay, good! I’ll start making the plans right away,” I reply. I am smiling from ear to ear now.

I must say, I have a good feeling about our upcoming visit to Bend, Oregon.


Stay tuned for what we think about Bend in our upcoming article, “48 Hours in Beautiful Bend, Oregon.

9 thoughts on “Is Bend, Oregon as Nice as They Say? (Part 1)

  1. Patricia C says:

    Exciting. I’m all for you visiting Bend. So much to do in that neck of the woods–I hear. In my younger days, such a good skiing location and hiking and wonderousness. (Have you read, “Strange Kind of Paradise”? Maybe I can dig up a fabulous quote about the landscape.) Keep me posted. I want to see you when you’re in town–assuming you’ll swing thru this way.

    Ah, found it:

    Strange Piece of Paradise, by Terri Jentz “…life’s dazzling array of turmoil.”

    This chain of high volcanoes, these fire-born mountains of ice, mark the spot where change is inexorable. It’s the place where the Pacific Ocean floor grinds under the North American continent, pushing up capricious cones that stretch from Canada to California. Usually there’s a wide expanse of land between them, and they reign alone over their domain. But here in Oregon, there’s a whole gang of them. Here the earth is seriously on the move, and by setting foot here, I would be force along with it.


    I looked out over miles of rugged plateau covered with juniper and sage. It occurred to me how appallingly heedless we had been at nineteen—bookish, sheltered girls who weren’t paying attention to the newspaper headlines. We thought that what lay out over our handlebars was the untroubled landscape of romantic imaginings, a series of American idylls, images from postcards, calendars, puzzles pictures, and decks of cards. We dreamed we would pedal past Fourth of July parades in small towns, American flags snapping in the breezes, and friendly folks waving from their porches: we dreamed we would bed down to serene nights under star-spangled skies.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Tricia, Thank you for sharing Jentz’ piece. It’s beautifully expressed. I hadn’t read it before.

      We’re going to fly into Bend for just a short weekend, so I don’t think we’ll make it further Northwest on that trip. However, we’re planning on coming back to the PNW for a visit this summer. We should definitely plan a get-together then. I’ll keep you posted. I miss you guys!

      Thanks again and I hope you’re having a good Monday so far. 🙂


  2. When I was a kid I used to buy balsa wood model airplanes that were stamped with the magic words “Bend Oregon,” always wanted to go there…! I’d better tag along and see what you report. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That’s soo cool! It’s a small world! 😀 Well I hope you won’t be disappointed. Thanks for sharing. That’s neat. Makes me smile.


  3. I went to Bend at the beginning of February and loved it! I wrote a few blog posts about my trip up there, but the highlights were definitely Smith Rock, the Deschutes Trail and Crux Brewing.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Lynn, I’m glad you had a wonderful time. We’ll definitely have to check those places out. That’s how I found your blog actually. I was doing searches on Bend and came across your site. I’ve been Bend obsessed for awhile. Hehe 🙂 Thanks for your comment!


  4. Ingrid says:

    Everyone that visits Bend seems to love it. Sorry I didn’t send you that email on pros and cons about Vegas and Denver. A lot of our decisions were based on what was in the best interest of the children. If we didn’t have kids, I think our decisions would have been totally different. Kids have a way of changing things. Enjoy your trip and I look forward to your post about it.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I completely understand Ingrid. No worries at all. Thanks very much for your input on that. I also look forward to seeing more of the beautiful bird and nature pictures that you share on your blog. Your photography is amazing! I loved the recent crane story. Very cool. 🙂

      Liked by 1 person

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