Step Outside - Oregon WELCOME TO STEP OUTSIDE! Find the best outdoor fun near you! en-us 30 http://stepoutside.org/ Step Outside - Oregon 144 144 http://stepoutside.org/ https://cdnstep-americantownscom.netdna-ssl.com/img/stepoutside_logo.gif Sun, 15 Jul 2018 16:10:47 -0500 This Dreamy Oregon Waterfall Will Transport You to a Fairytale Situated in central Oregon, Proxy Falls spills over the shoulder of North Sister (also known as “Faith”), one of the Three Sisters volcanic peaks. 

Cascading over 200 feet, these falls were formed by glaciers over 6,000 years ago and have since transformed into one of the most spectacular sites in America.

A post shared by Aly Waibel (@alywaibel) on

What makes this location so awe-inspiring is its symmetry. The stair-like formations of the falls look as if they were crafted in Tim Burton’s imagination.

Not only that, but the shimmering spring trickles down over a layer of moss so vibrant, you have to see it to believe it.

To get there, all you have to do is trek less than a mile on the Proxy Falls Trail which winds through beautiful dense forests.

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/this-dreamy-oregon-waterfall-will-transport-you-to-a-fairytale http://stepoutside.org/article/this-dreamy-oregon-waterfall-will-transport-you-to-a-fairytale Mon, 09 Jul 2018 00:00:00 -0500
10 Best Outdoor Festivals in Oregon From its rugged coast and gorgeous rivers to its stunning mountains and deep forests, Oregon is an outdoor wonderland. So, why not celebrate all that the state has to offer at an awesome outdoor festival? Need suggestions? Good. We got ‘em. These are our favorite outdoor festivals in Oregon.

Each autumn, for more than a quarter century, folks have been drawn to the slopes of Mount Hood for Cascade Geographic Societies Salmon, Mushroom and Bigfoot Festival. The festival includes a traditional Native American salmon bake, mushroom identification workshops, guided hikes live music, Sasquatch hunting, live music and native dancing.

The Eugene River Festival and Salmon Paddle Race is an annual event that celebrates the Willamette River. In addition to paddling and racing on the river, the event includes canoe, kayak and SUP demos, kid’s activities and flat-water races on a pond, interpretive activities and educational booths. Festival partners include the American Canoe Association, the University of Oregon Outdoor Program and Nearby Nature

Named one of the nation’s best Mountain Bike Festivals by Outside magazine, Mountain Bike Oregon is a three-day, all-inclusive MTB party. In addition to some luscious single track, you’ll find a food truck festival and adult beverages from the likes of River City Bicycles, Skratch Labs , Base Camp Brewing and Plank Town Brewing

A post shared by Jordan Carr (@jcarr13) on

Pacific Crest Trail Days is a three-day celebration of one of the United States’ great hiking trails. Camping, walking, hiking and daily sponsored activities will occur throughout the festival. A gear expo with booths and demos, as well as food and beverage vendors on hand. Backpacker magazine, Next Adventure, Granite Gear, and Osprey are just a few of the festival’s many sponsors. 

The Xwest Huck Fest is unlike most other board sport festivals in the country: It’s all about the sandboarding. The competition has both pro and amateur categories and the competitions consisting of only jumps. The one who gets the biggest air gets the biggest accolades. Oregon Pacific Bank, Sea Lion Caves, and Blue Heron Galleries are the main sponsors. 

A post shared by Rad Season (@radseason) on

Trail runners and ultra runners can’t do much better than the Mt. Hood Challenge—three half marathons in three days across the gorgeous trails and through the spectacular mountain woods of Mt. Hood National Forest. Apart from the running, you’ll enjoy speakers, organized activities, a mountain safety seminar, yoga and beer. Gnarly and On Running, and Lux Tan & Cryotherapy are some of the brands that make the challenge possible.

Two days of cycling, camping and live entertainment make up Cycle Oregon’s annual Weekender. There are several routes to choose from, including 17-mile, 41-mile, 52-mile and 76-mile loops, depending on how you feel and how much you want to ride. Kids who aren’t up to this kind of length can hang out with the Bike Camp for Kids. Meals, as well as a beer and wine garden are available on-site. Windmer Brothers Brewing , Bike Gallery, and Portland Airstream Adventures Northwest  will all be on site.

Families who love the outdoors will find kindred spirits are the Family Forest in Alsea. The festival offers a weekend of camping and family-family adventure like guided and DIY hiking, workshops, family yoga, farm tours, live music and a nature play zone. Leaping Lamb Farm hosts the event, while Deuter, CLIF Kid and Easy Camp are key festival partners.

Not all of the great paddling in Oregon requires a kayak, canoe, SUP or raft. Sometimes all you need is a gourd. A really big one. Hence the West Coast Giant Pumpkin Regatta in Tualatin. In addition to on-the-water events, festival-goers can participate in the 5K Regatta Run, as well as a number of other festival activities.

The number one goal of the Big Float? To encourage people to “get into their river” as well as “support its preservation and healthy development as a recreational resource.” This Portland-based fundraising event raises money for the Human Access Project, a project with a mission to “transform Portland’s relationship with the Willamette River,” and kicks off with a parade on July 14. Floaters then meet at the Tom McCall Bowl Beach. Then, floaters paddle down the river and end up at the west bank of the Tom McCall Bowl. Expect a big downtown beach party with live music, food carts, and plenty of activities for children. This event wouldn’t be possible without the help from Next Adventure, Portland Pedal Power, QuickFish Poke Bar, and many more! 

A post shared by @rm@n o. (@a_classic1) on

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-outdoor-festivals-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-outdoor-festivals-in-oregon Mon, 09 Jul 2018 00:00:00 -0500
5 Best Energizing Hikes in Oregon Oregon is known for its incredible beauty and invigorating hikes. This weekend, why not take to the trails and get your heart pumping while soaking in all of the natural splendor? Tackle the challenge of these five energizing hikes in Oregon.

The Tamolitch Blue Pool via McKenzie River Trail will get your heart rate up. The entire McKenzie River Trail is quite long at 26.4 miles with several fantastic features along the way, so we’re focusing on just the section that leads to the Tamolitch Blue Pool. Choose between a 3.3-mile hike starting from the Carmen Smith Reservoir or a 2.1-mile hike from the Trailbridge Reservoir. 

A post shared by Madelynn Knutson (@madelynn26) on

Trail of Ten Falls near Silverton, Oregon, is an energetic hike for sure, but the waterfall makes this 7.2-mile hike well worth the extra effort. The elevation gain is over 1,300 feet on this loop-style route. Keep in mind that this is a heavily trafficked loop, so watch out!

The Table Rock Trail near Molalla, Oregon, is known for its gorgeous wild flowers, bird watching, forest, and nature views. The lower section is also known as a difficult, 5.4-mile out and back hike with almost 800 feet in elevation gain. If you’re an intermediate level hiker, this is one of the most rewarding hikes in the state.

A post shared by Mika Tyler (@hoopergurl22) on

If you live near Camp Sherman, Oregon, then you must check out the Canyon Creek Meadows Loop. The loop covers 4.5 miles and has an elevation gain of 400-feet and features a lake. The loop will give you a good workout, but isn’t the most difficult on the list: kids are welcome, as are leashed dogs.

If you live for a challenge, then visiting Scout Lake via the Pacific Crest Trail might be the perfect hike for you. This out and back-style trail isn’t as popular as the other hikes on this list, likely because its 10.2 miles and almost 1,800 feet of elevation gain makes it a candidate for more serious hikers. However, the mountain, wild flower, wildlife, forest, and lake views provides for a diverse and rewarding landscape. 

A post shared by KATU News (@katutv) on

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/5-best-energizing-hikes-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/5-best-energizing-hikes-in-oregon Wed, 14 Mar 2018 00:00:00 -0500
7 Best Birdwatching Hikes in Oregon Oregon is home to over 500 species of unique birds across its beaches, forests, deserts, and mountains. Whether you’ve always wanted to see a majestic hawk in person or you dream about catching a glimpse of a super-rare species, these seven incredible birdwatching hikes in Oregon will surely help you out. 

Situated in the breathtaking Cascade Mountains, Crater Lake National Park is a true sight to see. Birds that can be spotted at Crater Lake include ruffed grouse, Clark’s nutcracker, gray jay, white-headed woodpecker, and much more. Next time you visit, consider bringing along the bird checklist provided by the Crater Lake Institute. This list will tell you which birds are in the park and in which seasons they are commonly spotted. 

The Clyde Holliday State Recreation includes a nature trail along the river, providing a perfect location to take in the waterfowl, warblers, buntings, sparrows, and more. Consider spending the night at one of their many campsites, as well. 

The Audubon Society of Portland runs an impressive, 150-acre nature sanctuary. It’s free to visit, and features four miles of hiking trails with Steller’s jay, chestnut-backed chickadees, and much more.

This is a very polite owl I met that one time. #owl

A post shared by John Landolfe (@donmanwolf) on

Cape Meares, known for its gorgeous lighthouse, is a national wildlife refuge on the Oregon coast. The spot has several trails, including the Oregon Coast Trail, which runs through the center of the refuge. Tons of different bird species stick close to the coast, making for great watching.

Cottonwood Canyon is another fantastic state park in Oregon. It’s the second largest in the state, providing plenty of opportunity for keen-eyed birdwatchers to find hawks, eagles, orioles, and more.

Juvenile White-Crowned Sparrow.

A post shared by Keane Gray Lo (@keaneinthewild) on

Fort Stevens State Park on the Columbia River is a history buff go-to, as Fort Stevens, on-site, was in use from the Civil War to World War II. Today, the 4,300-acre park has many scenic hiking trails with views of many rare bird species.

The Indian Ford Campground in Deschutes County has many hiking and biking trails and is known for its excellent birdwatching. For the best views, take to the northern or western wetlands. You’ll find a variety of warblers here, from orange-crowned to yellow-rumped, as well as several species of woodpecker from white-headed to northern flicker.   

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/7-best-birdwatching-hikes-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/7-best-birdwatching-hikes-in-oregon Fri, 02 Feb 2018 00:00:00 -0600
5 Best Trail Running Spots in Oregon Oregon boasts one of the most diverse landscapes in the country, with beaches and forests and hidden treasures throughout. From invigorating runs through lush forests and past sparkling waterfalls to shoreline jogs among sea lions, you’re in for an exciting workout at these five best trail running spots in Oregon. 

Alsea Falls Recreation Site is 13 miles west of Monroe, Oregon, and is characterized by beautiful forests, the Alsea waterfalls, and wildlife. Trails zigzag throughout the area, making for perfect, scenic running opportunities.

The Elijah Bristow State Park is just southeast of Eugene, Oregon, in a town called Dexter. The park has almost 850 acres of woodlands, wetlands, and meadows, with over 10 miles of running and hiking trails. 

Multnomah Falls is one of Oregon’s most popular trail climbs, featuring 700 feet of elevation. For this trail, you might want to pace yourself. But if you reach the top of the first section and are ready for more, continue on to the 5.4-mile loop to get a closer look at the falls.

Bridge over (un)troubled water...

A post shared by Ω (@mrfuryo) on

If you’re in the mood for an out of the ordinary run, the sea lions of Shore Acres State Park are calling for you. You can jog through the gorgeous gardens remaining from an abandoned millionaire’s estate before headed out onto the Cape Arago Pack Trail for a few miles.  

The Pittock Mansion Hike is a moderately difficult, five-mile trail run through a lush forest and by a stunning Victorian-era mansion. The views of downtown Portland and Mount Hood are unmatched. The trail is out and back with a small loop, and it’s open for all seasons. 

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/5-best-trail-running-spots-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/5-best-trail-running-spots-in-oregon Wed, 31 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0600
ATV Off-Roading Adventure at Sand Lake Recreation Area Oregon has no shortage of incredible sites with untold ATV off-roading potential. The state’s great sites include forests, mountains, and even beaches. For this Oregon off-roading adventure, start your engine and get ready to explore the dunes at Sand Lake Recreation Area. 

Before heading out to the Sand Lake Recreation Area, stop in nearby Tillamook, Oregon, for breakfast at Alice’s Country House. This humble eatery serves breakfast, lunch, and dinner. For a long day on the dunes, we recommend steak and eggs. 

A post shared by @enviee on

After breakfast, take the 15-minute detour before heading to the recreation area to enjoy Cape Lookout State Park. The spot is one of Oregon’s most gorgeous, with fantastic views of the water and plenty of nature trails to warrant a trip. 

The Sand Lake Recreation Area Dunes offer trails with varying difficulties from beginner levels all the way to experts. The area is open year-round to all vehicle classes, although not every trail is open to every vehicle class, so be sure to check their website before heading out! 

After you get your off-roading fill, head back into Tillamook and experience the awesome Air Museum. The exhibit hall features World War II artifacts, plane engines, and various aircrafts. Any war buff or plane nut will have a grand time at the Tillamook Air Museum. 

The beautiful Oceanside, Oregon, is only 20 minutes away from the museum, making for a scenic place to spend the night. We recommend booking a room at the relaxing Thyme & Tide Bed and Breakfast, “nestled between Cape Lookout and Cape Meares,” according to their website. The beachside house has great views and free breakfast in the morning.  

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/atv-offroading-adventure-at-sand-lake-recreation-area http://stepoutside.org/article/atv-offroading-adventure-at-sand-lake-recreation-area Tue, 30 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0600
9 Best Winter Camping Spots in Oregon Winter camping in Oregon is all about where you go. Would you prefer to camp in the snowfall, taking in all the magic of the season? Or would you prefer a more moderate stay on the coast, with the lapping waves at your back? Oregonians are lucky to not have to choose: the state offers plenty of opportunities for both. This winter, check out the following nine best winter camping spots in Oregon. 

Take advantage of the seasonally discounted lodging at Fort Stevens State Park. Once a military defense installation, the fort has become a 4,300-acre park along the Oregon coast. The coast usually has wild weather compared to other parts of Oregon, so take advantage of their plentiful campsites for an amazing winter trip.

A popular destination for visitors from neighboring Washington State, Carl G. Washburne Memorial State Park is located just off the highway and has first-come-first-served campsites. The site is open year-round and offers easy access to the Heceta Head Trail, which leads to the beautiful and historic Heceta Head lighthouse.

Home last night 🌿🌲

A post shared by r a y n e πŸŸπŸŠπŸ’¦πŸŒΎ (@raynevieger) on

Deschutes National Forest in Bend, Oregon, offers dispersed camping, a term used to define camping outside of designated campgrounds. During the winter, the most prepared amongst us might take their tents and carve their path through the forest, setting up a site away from civilization and everything else. Make sure you read and understand the rules for dispersed camping in Oregon.

Siuslaw National Forest is another excellent spot for campers interested in trying dispersed camping. They have several different areas to choose from. Before attempting dispersed camping, especially in the snowy Oregon weather, make sure to read and follow all of the guidelines provided by the National Park Service. 

Umpqua Lighthouse State Park is one of the smaller sites on this list, but it still boasts a wide variety of campsite options, including full hookups, electrical sites, tent sites, and different kinds of yurts. The sites are designed to maximize the beauty of nearby Lake Marie, and provide easy access to the 65-foot Umpqua River Lighthouse.

Parents, take note: Champoeg State Heritage Area is the site where “Oregon’s first provincial government was formed by a historical vote in 1843,” according to the park’s official website, making it an ideal location to combine camping with history. The campground includes eight full-hookups, and over 70 other camping options.

Settle right on the beach for a camping trip to Bullards Beach State Park. The campsites are insulated somewhat from the chilly winds by shore pines. The large site has hundreds of camping options, including full-hookup sites, electrical sites, yurts, and horse camps.

A post shared by James Conner (@jamezconner) on

Another coastline option, Sunset Bay State Park is one of wintry-Oregon’s finest destinations. Its idyllic nature cannot be overstated. Choose from full-hookup sites, electrical sites, tents, yurts, and group tent camping areas any time of year. 

Tumalo State Park is open year-round, although certain areas of the park are closed for the season. Winter visitors will want to utilize Loop B for its hook-up sites, tent sites, and yurts. Snow sport lovers won’t get much closer to easy skiing and snowboarding, as Mt. Bachelor is just up the road. 

Missin the yurt β›ΊοΈπŸ–€

A post shared by L y r i c (@cowsrdope) on

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/9-best-winter-camping-spots-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/9-best-winter-camping-spots-in-oregon Thu, 18 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0600
Camping Done Right: 10 Best Outdoor Stores in Oregon Outdoor enthusiasts are very much at home in the Pacific Northwest. So if you’re looking for a breathtaking place to set up a campsite, Oregon is tops. But it’s important to make sure that your campsite is safe and comfortable, which means finding the proper equipment. For all of the tents, backpacks, hydration gear, and apparel you’ll need, check out the 10 best outdoor stores in Oregon. 

Next Adventure has multiple locations throughout Oregon. Stop by any of their locations in Portland, Warren, or Sandy, for all of the best gear. They stock all the latest, greatest, and best camping and hiking equipment, including tents, sleeping bags, backpacks, and more.

A post shared by Next Adventure (@nextadventure) on

Northwest Outdoor Store is Medford’s go-to place for Columbia, Mountain Hardwear, the North Face, and Hydro Flask. Check out their website for fun DIY projects and blogs, too! 

U.S. Outdoor has been in business in one form or another since 1957, and today is a proud supplier of brands like Arc’Teryx, Burton, Marmot, and more. Camping equipment options includes bottles, knives, hydration, chairs, storage, and much more. 

Some readers may know Poler as one of the best camping equipment brands out there, but those same readers may not know that they have a flagship store right in Portland. Visitors can expect to find much of their excellent camping equipment, including their two-person tents, hammocks, sleeping bags, and more. 

Playing tourist today ✌🏼️#ethanvisitspnw

A post shared by Ethan Gulley (@ethangulley) on

Backcountry Gear is based in Eugene, Oregon, and has just about everything you might want for an outdoor adventure. That includes Hydro Flasks, Butora shoes, Mammut equipment, and much more. They’ve got too many awesome camping tools to list, so do yourself a favor and check them out yourself. 

The Ashland Outdoor Store is the place to go when in Ashland, Oregon, for your outdoor product needs. Not only do they stock plenty of camping equipment in their brick and mortar store, but they host tons of events throughout the month. Check their website for a full listing of events and drop by to see what products they have in stock.

Fisherman’s Marine and Outdoor specializes in fishing equipment, but that doesn’t mean their camping stock is anything to scoff at. With locations in Oregon City, Portland, and Tigard, you’re never too far to stop by. They’ve got a wide variety of tents, canopies, cots, sleeping bags, and more.

Mountain Supply of Oregon has been in business since 1980 supplying the fine folks of Bend with all of their mountain supplies and camping needs. They offer rental rates for various equipment and stock many of the best brands, including Arc’Teryx, Boreas, Hydro Flask, Garmont, and more. 

The owners of Salem Summit Company in Salem, Oregon, are motivated by “a passion for playing outdoors and enjoying all nature has to offer.” It’s that passion that gives them an edge over the competition. They stock a wide variety of equipment for campers, hikers, and climbers, including stuff from Sea to Summit, Deuter, Therm-a-Rest, and more.

Tillamook Sporting Goods is a locally-owned business stocking equipment for fishing, shooting, archery, crabbing, boating, and, yes, camping. They stock camp stoves, inflatable mats, sleeping bags, lanterns, boats, rope… the works. 

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/camping-done-right-10-best-outdoor-stores-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/camping-done-right-10-best-outdoor-stores-in-oregon Wed, 10 Jan 2018 00:00:00 -0600
A beginner’s guide: Ice fishing Vin T. Sparano, as excerpted from Complete Outdoors Encyclopedia: Camping, Fishing, Hunting, Boating, Wilderness Survival, First Aid

 

 

Ice fishing differs greatly from open-water fishing, and it is a demanding sport. It requires an understanding of and an ability to cope with winter weather, knowledge of the cold-weather habits of the fish, and the use of an unusual assortment of gear, most of it unique to ice fishing.

There are two basic ice-fishing methods: tip-up fishing and jigging. In general, tip-ups are usually used on larger fish—pike, pickerel, walleyes, trout, and such—that prefer bait and require the angler to play the waiting game. Jigging is usually preferred for smaller fish that tend to school up—bluegills, perch, crappies, and the like. But these are merely generalizations, not hard-and-fast rules. For example, jigging (sometimes called chugging) is often quite productive on big lake trout and salmon in the Great Lakes. 

Also called tilts, these come in various styles, but they all perform two basic functions: they hold a baited line leading from a revolving-type reel spool, and they signal the bite of a fish. The most common type of tip-up consists of three strips of wood, each about 18 inches long. Two are cross pieces that form an X as they span the hole. The third piece is an upright; at its bottom end is attached a simple line-holding spool, while the upper end holds the signaling device. The signal is usually a piece of very flexible spring steel with a red (some anglers prefer black) flag on the end. After the hook is baited and lowered to the desired depth, the steel arm is “cocked”—bent over and down and hooked onto a “trigger.” When a fish strikes, an arm on the revolving spool releases the steel arm and it flies erect.

In this type of tip-up, the reel is positioned underwater. In other variations, the reel is positioned above the ice. Each type has its advantages. The above-the-ice reel can be more sensitively adjusted for light-biting fish, but the line tends to freeze on the reel once it gets wet. The underwater reel largely eliminates the problem of freezing, but the fisherman must remove the tip-up from the hole before he can grab the line.

Baits for tip-up fishing are usually live. In general, it pays to match the size of the bait to the size of the fish you’re after. Baits range from tiny maggots (often called mousies) and grubs for panfish, to worms and small minnows for walleyes, and up to 6-inch baitfish for pike. 

As done by ice fishermen, jigging is simply a method of imparting an up-and-down movement to a lure or bait. Jigging can be—and is—done with any sort of line-holding rod or stick. 

Some jigging rods—more appropriately called sticks—are simply pieces of wood 18 inches or so long, with U-shaped notches in each end. The line—10-pound-test monofilament is very popular—is wound lengthwise onto the stick around the U-shaped notches and is paid out as needed. There are other types of jigging sticks of varying designs, and many ice anglers use standard spinning or spincast rods or the butt half of a fly rod. 

Rods made specially for ice jigging are simple affairs consisting of a fiberglass tip section that is 2 or 3 feet long seated in a short butt. The butt may have a simple revolving-spool reel or merely a pair of heavy-wire projections around which the line is wound. The tip section may have two to four guides, including the tip guide. The shortness of such a rod lets the user fish up close to the hole and have better control over the lure or bait at the end of his line. 

There are many and varied jigging lures and baits, but flashiness is built into most of them. Others produce best when “sweetened” with bait. Two popular jigging lures are: an ungainly looking critter with a heavy body shaped and painted to resemble a baitfish, a hook at each end and a treble hook in the middle of its underside, and a line-tie ring in the middle of its upper surface; and a long, slim, three- or four-sided, silvery model with a treble hook at one end and a line-tie ring at the other. 

Jigging methods vary with the fisherman and with the fish being sought. However, a productive way to fish many jigging lures, especially flashier types, is to twitch the lure slightly and then jerk it suddenly upward with a quick upward movement of the arm. The proper interval between jerks is learned with experience. 

Popular jigging baits include a single perch eye (either impaled on a small hook or used to sweeten a tiny hair or rubber-bodied ice fly), worms, grubs, maggots, insect larvae, minnows, and cut bait (pieces of skin or flesh that are cut from the tail or body of such fish as smelt and perch). 

Jiggers tend to move around more than tip-up fishermen, boring holes in different areas until they find a productive spot. 

Like most other forms of fishing, ice angling requires some auxiliary equipment. Most ice anglers prefer to keep such gear to a minimum, for they have to haul it with them wherever they go on the ice. 

If you’re going to fish through holes in the ice, you need something to make those holes. The ice auger is a popular tool for this job. Augers come in different designs. One has a long handle with a U-shaped bend at the top, and a rounded cutting blade at the bottom. The handle is turned much like that of a manual drill, and the blade cuts a round hole through the ice. Another type looks like a giant ice drill with sharp, widely spaced threads. It is used in the same way. Gasoline-powered ice drills are also available. 

Then there’s the ice spud or chisel. This is a heavy metal handle with a large, chisel-type blade at the bottom. The spud’s weight helps the angler punch down through the ice, but the user must shape the hole once he has broken through. 

An indispensable item of accessory gear is the ice skimmer, a ladle-type device that is used to keep the hole clear of ice chips and chunks and to skim ice. A heavy sinker will serve the same purpose. 

Many ice anglers like to use an attached spring clip. It is attached to the fishing line and used to determine the water depth—an important factor because in winter most game fish are found on or near the bottom. 

Winter is the time of year when ice fishermen venture out onto frozen waters. Most will have fun, but a few will get into trouble because they don’t know how to make sure that the ice is safe. The first rule is never take chances. There are two periods when accidents are likely to happen: early in the season when slush ice doesn’t freeze uniformly and late in the season when ice melts at an uneven rate. It takes prolonged periods of freezing to make ice safe. Here are some rules to remember: 

Be cautious of heavy snowfalls while ice is forming. Snow acts as an insulator. The result is a layer of slush and snow on top of treacherous ice. 

Clear, solid river ice is 15 percent weaker than clear lake ice. 

River ice is thinner midstream than near the banks. 

River mouths are dangerous because currents create pockets of unsafe ice. 

When walking with friends, stay 10 yards apart. 

Lakes that have a lot of springs will have weak spots of ice. 

 

 

 

 

About the author:

Vin T. Sparano is the author of Complete Outdoors Encyclopedia as well as three other guides for Rizzoli

He has been an outdoor editor and writer for more than fifty years. He is editor emeritus of Outdoor Life, and has written and edited more than fifteen books about the outdoors. In 2013, he was inducted into the Freshwater Fishing Hall of Fame.

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/a-beginners-guide-ice-fishing http://stepoutside.org/article/a-beginners-guide-ice-fishing Tue, 26 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0600
10 Best Archery Outfitters in Oregon Hunting is one of Oregon’s most popular past times, with deer and elk hunting claiming the top popularity spots. Whether you’re looking for a bow to catch big game or you’re simply into the art of shooting as a sport alone, be sure to outfit yourself with the best. Here are the 10 best archery shops in Oregon.

Since 1971, the Bow Rack has provided excellent archery gear and equipment to the Springfield and Eugene area in Oregon. They offer an archery range as well as a full-service bow shop. Find gear from brands like Hoyt, PSE, and Mission

The Pacific Crest Archery Pro Shop in Salem, Oregon, sells most of the best name brands in the industry, including Mathews, Mission, and Hoyt equipment. They also have an indoor range and a full brand listing on their website.

Watching Daddy and Mr.Kap shoot their bows!

A post shared by Haylee Schierling (@hayleeschierling) on

No matter your level of experience, the fine folks of Southern Oregon Archery are happy to help. They provide lessons, leagues, custom arrows, bows, youth products, arrows, and much more. 

Archery World services the Troutdale, Oregon, area with many of the best names in the industry, including Bowtech, PSE, Hoyt, Bear, and more. They have League Nights and a full event calendar on their website.

Haven't shot a bow in some years! So fun, thanks Andre! Serious archers wear uggs.

A post shared by Veronica Hatch (@veronicaehatch) on

Archers Afield in Tigard, Oregon, offer bow hunter leagues, beginner compound leagues, and family archery. In addition, they provide private lessons, instructor courses, and cosmic archery. And, of course, a variety of archery equipment. 

G4 Archery in Hillsboro, Oregon, is “the complete archery pro-shop that you can trust,” according to their website. They offer products from many of the best archery vendors in the world, including Anarchy, Bear, Beman, Wac’Em, Scott, and more.

The Archery Hut has been in business for over 40 years. They carry compound and traditional bows, a wide array of arrows, and more. Call to schedule lessons from award-winning archers.

Now for something a little different… Custom Bows by Wes Wallace provides handcrafted archery equipment. Although you won’t find these bows in a traditional brick and mortar shop, they have been providing custom-built equipment since 1988, including longbows, recurves, and accessories.

Rose City Archery in Myrtle Point, Oregon, has produced wood arrows for 80 years. They create products for traditional archery, including bows and arrows. Check out their website for coupons, sale items, and the entire product catalogue. 

Can anyone identify some of these bows? #RoseCityArchery

A post shared by Rose City Archery (@rosecityarchery) on

La Grande’s Alpine Archery is well-loved by locals and visitors alike. Not only will you find archery equipment like arrows, broadheads, decoys, rests, releases, and sights, but you’ll also find plenty of other essential outdoor gear. If you’re out on a hunt, consider purchasing one of their knives, maps, and packs. 

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-archery-outfitters-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-archery-outfitters-in-oregon Fri, 22 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0600
10 Best Bait and Tackle Shops in Oregon With an almost endless selection of great fishing outposts like the Tillamook Bay, Deschutes River, and much, much more, Oregon is an angler’s dream. But before you head out onto the water, make sure you’ve got all the equipment you need for success. Below, you’ll find 10 of the best bait and tackle shops in the state to help you do just that.

The Siuslaw Marina and RV Park in Florence, Oregon, is located right on the Siuslaw River. Stop in at their marina for boat launches, boat rentals, ice, snacks, boat parts, bait, and tackle. 

Since 1972, Mazama Sporting Goods has been providing some of the best hunting and fishing equipment to the Eugene, Oregon area. Their pro fishing shop recently got a space upgrade and now offers live sand shrimp, lure building materials, and fly fishing, in addition to tackle and cure baits.

Sunrise Bait in Forest Grove, Oregon, is a mom and pop bait shop, providing fresh and cured salmon eggs to end consumers and retailers alike. You can find their bait in local shops or purchase online. 

Brad’s Bait and Tackle in Madras, Oregon, is a full-service tackle shop, with featured products from Lemiglas, Fenwick, Pflueger, Okuma, and more. Check their website or call ahead to make sure they’re open as hours vary.

Not the bead store 😳#somethingfishy #fishermansmarine #gonefishing

A post shared by Laura Mapes (@lauradmapes) on

Fisherman’s Marine and Outdoor has three Oregon locations, one in Oregon City, one in Portland, and another in Tigard. For over 40 years, this family-owned business has provided some of the best products and customer service to fishermen and women, boaters, hunters, and campers. They sell a variety of reels, rods, lures, terminal tackle, bait, and more.

River Guide Supply, headquartered in Oregon City, Oregon, specializes in tackle, tackle craft, fishing accessories, reels, rods, and more. The store, located in “the heart of steelhead and salmon fishing country,” continues a 30-year-long business. 

For over three decades, Oregon Tackle in Portland, Oregon, has provided all kinds of fishing tackle. According to their website, “we pride ourselves on being one of the largest remaining U.S. tackle manufacturers providing quality products that are still made in the USA.”

Tackle Time Charters and Bait Shop in Warrenton, Oregon, sells fresh, in-season bait. They prefer to receive orders the day before a big fishing trip for fresh bait, although they also offer frozen bait. Order online or give them a call during business hours.

Oregon Rod, Reel, and Tackle is another fantastic option in Eugene, Oregon, for all your bait and tackle needs. They sell steelhead stalkers, North Country Lures and Flies, fishing rods, and much more. Check out their website for a full listing of products and their online store.

Getting ready for the coasties. R&B 3.5's & #6 Jetty Bombs @randblureco

A post shared by Michael Glass (@glass3435) on

The Great American Tackle Shop in Clackamas, Oregon, has been in business since 1993 selling fishing gear. They have a wide range of bait and tackle, as well as experienced staff happy to help you learn. If you’re planning on fishing on the Clackamas River, make sure to stop in for tips. 

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-bait-and-tackle-shops-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-bait-and-tackle-shops-in-oregon Fri, 22 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0600
10 Best Ice Skating Rinks in Oregon In Oregon, we appreciate refreshing physical activity and the winter weather doesn’t slow us down. Whether it’s a glistening outdoor winter village or a professional-size arena, here are the 10 best ice skating rinks in Oregon. 

The Sherwood Ice Arena is a premier skating and hockey facility with adult skating, adult hockey leagues, and figure skating. They also offer birthday party packages and open public times. Looking to increase your skills? Sign up for private lessons with a professionally-licensed coach.

Home to the Eugene Jr. Generals Youth Hockey Program, Lane Amateur Hockey Association, the Eugene Figure Skating Club, and more, the Rink Exchange provides excellent skating opportunities to the people of Eugene, Oregon. They offer intro to hockey and Learn-To-Skate programs, along with a hockey academy for adults.  

Sk8 or die, or don't.

A post shared by Alex Corgiat (@alexcorgiat) on

The Lloyd Center Ice Rink in Portland, Oregon, is part of the greater Lloyd Center shopping mall in Portland, Oregon. Take a break from shopping for an hour of skating bliss. Take advantage of their group lessons, group rates, and birthday party rates.

ice skating with them is always the best

A post shared by Lily (@lilybosaz) on

The Ashland Rotary Centennial Ice Rink, an outdoor rink, is open through February. The city of Ashland invites you to “the little outdoor rink in beautiful Lithia Park, where the air is fresh, the white lights are twinkling and the music blends with the sounds of nature and blades on the ice.” We’re sold. 

Since the early 1900s, the people of Klamath Falls have enjoyed outdoor ice skating. The Community Ice Arena continues that century-old tradition with figure skating, hockey, and other winter sports opportunities.

Guess which one of us fell? β›Έ

A post shared by Paige McConnaughy (@paigeelisabeth96) on

The Winter Village at Jerry Willey Plaza at Oregon Station (say that three times fast!) offers an open-air ice skating experience unlike any other in the area. The outdoor rink offers affordable admission and skate rentals. Check their website for an updated calendar of events.

Save on skating when you purchase a season pass or 10-pack for the Salem Ice Rink. Whether you want to reserve the ice for a corporate private event, a birthday party, or simply want to get your skate on, Salem on Ice provides a beautiful opportunity to do so. 

Salem on Ice - 1 @soozahnnah - 0

A post shared by d e v y n lowks w e b b e r (@dwebb) on

The Pavilion is part of Bend, Oregon’s Parks and Recreation department. They have holiday and special hours with unique programming opportunities. Check out their website for a total winter schedule.

The Winterhawks Skating Center has been the home to the Portland Winterhawks since 1965. They are open to the public for recreational leagues, clinics, skating lessons, figure skating, and competitions. 

The RRRink in Medford, Oregon, provides affordable general admission tickets for open skating. They also have skate helpers available for a small fee for those that aren’t too comfortable yet on the ice. 

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-ice-skating-rinks-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-ice-skating-rinks-in-oregon Mon, 18 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0600
10 Best Ski Destinations for Families in Oregon Oregon has a wide range of incredible skiing opportunities with resorts conveniently located throughout the state. From Mt. Hood to Bend, these 10 awesome ski destinations in Oregon will bring you a lifetime of memories with your family. 

Mt. Hood Meadows’ website boasts that they offer “the most varied and exciting terrain in the northwest.” Take adult, youth, or private lessons to get the most out of your next ski trip. 

If you’re in Southern Oregon and looking for a place to ski, then Mt. Ashland is the place to be! They will rent you all of the equipment you’ll need to take advantage of their gorgeous mountainside slopes, maintained since 1964.

Mt. Bachelor in Bend, Oregon, is a haven for families with young children: kids under age 12 ski free (with a four-day advance purchase of an adult multi-day ticket). What better way is there to get your youngsters out on the slopes?

Hoodoo Ski Area in Sisters, Oregon, sells daily and seasonal passes and holds regular events, including a New Year’s Eve Party and Winter Carnival. Take advantage of their ski and ride school and check their website for real-time webcam updates on the slopes.

For 80 years, Timberline Lodge and Ski Area has offered “one of the most exciting and unique high-alpine mountain experiences in North America,” according to their website. Their world-class skiing is available with individual or group passes. 

Norm's first chair crew stoked on all this fresh snow and their goody bags. #timberlinetruth #timberlinelodge #firstchair

A post shared by Timberline Lodge (@timberlinelodge) on

Anthony Lakes Mountain Resort is perfect for the entire family. They offer fifth and sixth grade Sunday classes as well as ski schools for all ages. Stop by their rental shop to pick up everything you’ll need for a memorable time.

The Cooper Spur Mountain Resort is in the middle of the Mt. Hood National Forest. Their ski resort offers 50 acres of beginner and intermediate slopes, a double chairlift, 10 runs for skiing and snowboarding, and much more. 

Willamette Pass in Crescent, Oregon, is selling tickets now for the upcoming winter season. They offer different rates for adults, children, juniors, youths, and students. Consider taking advantage of one of their ski rental packages, which includes the skis, boots, and poles.

The Summit Ski Area in Government Camp, Oregon, is the second oldest continuously-operating ski area in the United States, according to their website. Opened in 1927, the Summit boasts a base elevation of 4,000 feet. Check their website for live condition updates and trail maps.

If you’re looking for an unpretentious ski area for the entire family to get comfortable on the slopes, then the Warner Canyon Ski Area is perfect for you. They offer ski and snowboard lessons, as well. Buy your passes now! 

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-ski-destinations-for-families-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/10-best-ski-destinations-for-families-in-oregon Wed, 06 Dec 2017 00:00:00 -0600
5 Beautiful Backpack Camping Spots in Oregon Oregon is one of the most beautiful states in the nation, hands down. It’s no surprise then that hiking and camping is one of the most popular past-times in the area. Before heading out on your next camping trip, make sure that the site you’re visiting is open for backpackers. Consider one of the following five so you can spend more time enjoying the scenery and less time worrying about the details. 

Located in Mt. Hood National Forest, the meadows lining the trails at Bonney Meadow will make you feel as if you’ve stepped into a fairytale. The area is utilized by hikers, bikers, and horseback riders. Stay overnight for no fee at one of the six single sites at Bonney Meadow Campground. Hit the Bonney Meadows Trail for some exploration—a lightly-trafficked route that backpackers love. 

The forests surrounding Timothy Lake combined with the gorgeous views of Mt. Hood in the distance make for one of the more beautiful backpack camping spots in Oregon. The lake covers 1,500 acres and boasts over 200 campsites across seven campgrounds. Campers should have no trouble finding space.

No matter the time of year, Crater Lake National Park offers a memorable backpack camping opportunity. The summer backpacking season is short due to snowy winters, but if you visit during a sweet spot, Crater Lake can be one of the best. For the most adventurous among us, the park is open for winter backpacking. Snowshoers and skiers are welcome, but make sure to check out their winter safety page before considering an overnight stay! 

The Three Sisters Wilderness is part of the greater Willamette National Forest near Blue River, Oregon. The three sisters are comprised of the North, Middle, and South peaks, providing gorgeous views of glaciation, meadows, waterfalls, lava fields, and more. Backpackers can choose between several campgrounds, including the Scott Lake, Alder Springs, Limberlost, Red Diamond, Hard Rock, and Frissell Crossing sites. 

Spanning over 20,000 acres, the Opal Creek Wilderness is beautifully forested with Douglas fir, Western red cedar, and other incredible lush vegetation. Backpackers will find eight trails, for a total of 36 miles, throughout the wilderness area. At Opal Creek, you will find dispersed camping areas. Camping is allowed anywhere except within 100 feet of a lake, trail or stream, or where posted as closed.  

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/5-beautiful-backpack-camping-spots-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/5-beautiful-backpack-camping-spots-in-oregon Fri, 20 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0500
5 Stunning Foliage Hikes in Oregon Oregon is home to an incredibly diverse amount of flora and fauna. Throughout the fall, keep an eye on the deciduous trees, aspen, bigleaf maple, and western larch for a cornucopia of bursting color. In need of a little more direction to get the most out of your foliage hiking this season? Check out these five breathtaking hikes.  

The Cape Horn Loop Hike is a 7.1-mile loop with a 1,350 feet elevation gain and moderate difficulty. Combined with its proximity to the Portland-Vancouver metropolitan area and as one of the most beautiful in the state, it is usually quite crowded. 

According to www.oregonhikers.org, “Silver Falls State Park is the crown jewel of the Oregon state park system, being both Oregon’s largest State Park (9,000 acres) and boasting one of America’s most impressive waterfall day-hikes.” As such, it’s no surprise that this gorgeous hike is one of the most popular. While the trail is open year-round, it’s best traveled in spring for the blooming foliage, or the fall for the changing colors.

The River Trail is one of Central Oregon’s most popular hikes, especially during the fall. It is considered a “tree-shaded, overnight oasis” for campers. The Deschutes and Columbia Rivers converge along the trail, providing for fantastic opportunities to hike, mountain bike, raft, and fish.

The Dry Creek Falls Hike begins under the Bridge of the Gods and continues along the Pacific Crest Trail before eventually turning into the Dry Creek Falls. Best explored in mid-to-late October, the 75-foot waterfall is surrounded by foliage. The hike is easy and family friendly.

Enjoy the changing fall colors without leaving town. Originally founded in 1928, Hoyt Arboretum now includes 190 ridge-top acres and 12 miles of hiking. Enjoy the 2,300 unique species as you hike through the forest and watch the leaves change as the season turns. 

]]>
http://stepoutside.org/article/5-stunning-foliage-hikes-in-oregon http://stepoutside.org/article/5-stunning-foliage-hikes-in-oregon Tue, 03 Oct 2017 00:00:00 -0500