• There’s Never Been a Better Time to Build Your Home
  • Learn More

5 Best Central Oregon Day Trips for the Adventurous Hiker

Published on September 13, 2023

With its proximity to stunning natural landscapes and diverse terrain, Caldera Springs serves as an epic basecamp for exploring Central Oregon’s many natural wonders. And one of the best ways to do so? On foot. If you’re an adventurous hiker seeking an unforgettable day trip, we’ve curated a list of the best destinations near Sunriver that’ll satisfy your wanderlust. Lace up your boots, pack your backpack and get ready for a hike to remember. 

Smith Rock State Park

Located 44 miles north of Caldera Springs, Smith Rock State Park offers a jaw-dropping blend of towering cliffs, rugged canyons and the winding (aptly named) Crooked River. Hiking options abound in this geological wonderland, ranging from easy strolls along the river to challenging ascents up the park’s famous formations. Don’t miss the iconic Misery Ridge Trail, which rewards hikers with breathtaking views from the top.

Image courtesy alltrails.com

Tumalo Falls and Three Sisters Wilderness

About 30 miles northwest of Caldera Springs lies the legendary Tumalo Falls trailhead — the gateway to the magnificent Three Sisters Wilderness. The trail meanders through lush forests and opens up to reveal the spectacular Tumalo Falls, a 97-foot waterfall that cascades into a picturesque canyon. For a more extensive hike, continue on the Tumalo Creek Trail and explore the pristine alpine lakes and stellar views of the Three Sisters Mountains.

Mount Bachelor

Known for its exceptional skiing in winter, Mount Bachelor transforms into a hiker’s paradise during the summer months — all just 15 miles from Caldera Springs. Take a chairlift ride to the summit and embark on a thrilling alpine hike that offers panoramic views of the Cascade Range. The Summit Trail and the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway are popular routes that showcase the beauty of the mountain’s volcanic landscape and high alpine meadows.

Newberry National Volcanic Monument

Venture 19 miles south of Caldera Springs to explore the volcanic wonders of Newberry National Volcanic Monument. The Big Obsidian Flow Trail takes you through a mesmerizing landscape of glassy obsidian — a unique opportunity to witness the aftermath of volcanic activity. For a longer hike, choose the Paulina Peak Trail, which rewards you with sweeping vistas of the surrounding volcanic caldera and the sparkling waters of Paulina Lake.

Image courtesy gowanderwild.com

McKenzie River Trail

For a picturesque hike through old-growth forests alongside the McKenzie River, make the 1.5-hour drive to the McKenzie River Trail. This 26-mile trail can be tackled in segments, and each section offers its own charm. Marvel at the roaring Sahalie and Koosah Falls, walk through the enchanting Tamolitch Blue Pool and immerse yourself in the tranquility of the forested surroundings.

All of this (and more) awaits at Caldera Springs. To book a discovery visit this summer, get in touch with our sales team at sales@calderasprings.com or 541.593.3000 today.

Further Reading