The Metolius River Trail

River Trail. Houses are on other side of the river.
River Trail. Houses are on other side of the river.


The area around Bend, Oregon has so much to see that in order to do it I think you would need at least a year.  Even then, with the changing seasons you would want to revisit places.   We talk to other campers and many are from the area and can give you an idea on the best places to visit.   We met one very talkative, animated lady who fit this bill.  She lives in Oregon but camps almost every weekend and was a wealth of information for us.  We told her we are headed soon for the Seattle area and she had the names of several nice places to stay in that area.  Locally she told us that one of her favorite places was The Metolius River, outside of Sisters, Oregon, in an area called Ft.  Sherman.

fort sherman, oregon


We traveled to the area the next day, which happened to be a sunny, warm Sunday on Memorial Day Weekend.  Lots of people were out and about along the river.     Ft. Sherman has lodges and many summer homes along the river.  It certainly would be a nice place to have a vacation or second home.  Our fellow camper had told us that we could follow the trail that goes along the river up to the Headwaters of the Metolius.  We couldn’t find a trail head, which is not uncommon in Oregon.  You have to dig around a little to find things sometimes and ask directions from people.  I think this keeps the area from being overstressed from too many people trampling on it, which is a positive thing.

After walking the trail for awhile we stopped a fly fisherman and asked how far it was to the Headwaters of the Metolius.  He explained that you can no longer take the trail all the way.  Evidently the trail crosses private property and the property owners had a disagreement with The Forest Service.  He gave us directions and since our little dog was panting we headed back to the car to drive to the area.  But not before we got a few good pictures.

Click on any picture for carousel


The Headwaters of the Metolius river

We drove then to the head of the Metolius.  It is a unique river because it actually has its beginning where underground springs come to the surface and escape.  As a consequence the water level of the river stays about the same year-round.  On the day we went it was pretty busy with people.  Its a bit frustrating when you reach the overlook area because the area over the headwaters is very overgrown.  You are not allowed to get down close to the river because its private property.  When we mentioned this later to our friend at the campground she said she just went off the trail and on down to the water.  We didn’t do this but on a quiet day you probably could if you were totally respectful and just sat by the river, then left.

Remember:  We really only have this very moment.  To learn to stay in the present is to learn to live life to its fullest.  Listen to the kids laughing.  Look at the drops of dew on the leaves.  Smell the biscuits baking.  This moment is all around.  Live it!