...It's as easy as a day at the park - Smith Rock State Park that is!
Most people, when they think of Oregon immediately think of our lush valleys with verdant hillsides, vineyards, orchards and the like, or of our beautiful rugged coastline with crashing surf and rocky drops to narrow beaches.
Another favorite vista, is the Cascade Mountain Range with its rocky peaks and almost year round dusting of snow. In Central Oregon this is our predominant view, you can drive just about anywhere and see Mt. Bachelor, Broken Top, The Three Sisters, Mt. Washington, Three Fingered Jack and Mt. Jefferson... on a really clear day you can even add Mt. Hood to the list. But my favorite views are not necessarily of this beautiful mountain range, but of the world renown climber's paradise Smith Rock.
Just a short drive from north Redmond and east into Terrebonne; down a meandering country road of small cattle ranches and hobby farms Smith Rock rises on the horizon.
The Nez Pierce and other regional tribes thought the rocks here held power and considered this to be a magical place. At times there is an almost spiritual feeling, especially at dawn when Smith Rock is bathed in a rose to tangerine glow.
Smith Rock is a great place to hike and has trails for the novice and expert alike; click here for a trail guide. It can be a goat scramble so where sturdy hiking shoes and layered attire, the weather can be chilly in the morning and evening and down right toasty at mid day when the high desert sun bakes the rocks. Be sure to have plenty of water on hand as well. And if you're a climber this is absolutely paradise but since I'm afraid of heights, here is a better guide to the challenges available to you at Smith Rock State Park.