Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway

THE CASCADE LAKES SCENIC BYWAY

Refer to National Geographic’s Guide to Scenic Highways & Byways. Page 433

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We took one of the rides in the book I reviewed a little back, the National Geographic Guide to Scenic Highways & Byways.  This one is called the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway.  It runs from Bend, OR to Sunriver, on Oregon Hwy. 372.  We took the road in the reverse order than the book, which is a little like reading a map upside down.  The book gives a running narrative of the trip, so if you start at the end you reverse what you are seeing.  It sounds easy but not so.  I’m always trying to figure out where we are in comparison to the book.

Anyway… it was a rainy, overcast day in May.  Many of the lakes require hiking in so we didn’t see a whole lot except the river, pine trees and an empty highway. If you are interested in seeing lava flows this is the ride for you.  There are a multitude of National Forest Campgrounds as well.  Most are designed for small trailers and tents but several we rode through had large sites that would fit our 35′ rig.  If you are wanting to take a large rig into the back country and are traveling north through Central Oregon this road might be a good choice for you.  It would be helpful to have someone scout out each campground through before taking your big rig in.  Some are pretty tight.

Deschutes River

Deschutes River
Deschutes River

We then went to the High Desert Museum outside of Bend.  They have a gift shop,  a snack & lunch restaurant and several inside exhibits.  One is on life in Bend the the late 1800’s and the other is on Oregon breweries.  Outside they have an animal exhibit and a reconstruction of an old sawmill and homestead.  It would be a great place to take a school group, or children if visiting the area.

High Desert Museum – Inside Exhibits

One of Indoor Exhibits
One of Indoor Exhibits
Old Western Exhibit
Old Western Exhibit

Beautiful outside art at high desert museum

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The Animals in the High Desert Museum

These animals have all been injured and are unable to live in the wild on their own.

Golden Eagle
Golden Eagle
Cute River Otters
Cute River Otters
An old Bobcat She had been declawed. Who does those things?
An old Bobcat She had been declawed. Who does those things?

The Old sawmill & Homestead

They are working on this area.  It looks like it will show a complete village soon.

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This is a low key, beautiful part of our country.  The people don’t dress up much, they are friendly and outgoing.  Bend, Oregon is a beautiful place.