DAY TRIPPIN': Taking the backdoor route to Applegate Lake

DAY TRIPPIN': Taking the backdoor route to Applegate Lake

Editor's Note: Day Trippin' is a regular feature that gives readers a chance to play tour guide and tell us about a nearby getaway.

By Curt Kline

for the Mail Tribune

A lot of people love to go to the Applegate Lake every year. It’s an easy trip and the weather in the Applegate Valley is almost always nice. But 99 percent of them take the “easy” way. Turn at Ruch and follow the nice paved road along the river all the way to the...

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Plenty of life in Death Valley

Plenty of life in Death Valley

DEATH VALLEY NATIONAL PARK — It took me several trips here to realize this, but if you know where to look and time it right, Death Valley is one giggle after another.

Sure, it's vast, wind-raked, sun-baked and seemingly empty. Yes, it will confirm your puniness in the universe. And it might kill you if you're in the wrong place at the wrong time without water or cover.

But there's plenty of weird science, quirky history and plain fun in these 3.4 million acres of dry lake.....

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Proxy Falls is a different place in winter

Proxy Falls is a different place in winter

If you take a hike on Proxy Falls Trail during summer or autumn, there's a good chance you'll have company. The two waterfalls on this easy hike off McKenzie Pass Highway are among the most frequently photographed in Oregon and often draw a crowd on weekends.

Come back in winter, though, when the highway is closed to vehicles and the preferred mode of transportation is skis or snowshoes, and it's a far different experience.

The journey to Proxy Falls is longer, colder and...

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Road to adventure

Road to adventure

Every time I venture over the Santiam Pass toward the beautiful haven that is Bend, I start thinking of ways I could successfully make it my new home.

The metropolis of Central Oregon is bursting at the seams with fun outdoor activities, delicious breweries, dry weather, great skiing and my most treasured aspect — hiking trails galore.

Once over the pass and into the city of about 78,280 Bendites, I begin to rationalize quitting my job, working at Mount Bachelor all winter....

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Backpacking is glorious in the

Backpacking is glorious in the "Oregon Alps"

EAGLE CAP WILDERNESS — As we stood on the top of Oregon’s largest wilderness area, looking down upon mountains that spread across the horizon like rows of jagged teeth, we decided the only way to celebrate was swimming in a lake partly covered by snow and ice.

From the moment we’d entered the backcountry of the Wallowa Mountains it had been hot, and during the 3,400-foot climb to our campsite at Ice Lake — and the even steeper trek to the 9,826-foot summit...

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Craig's Creek Trail delivers on its promise

Craig's Creek Trail delivers on its promise

The main attraction of the Smith River National Recreation Area in Northern California is, no surprise, the river itself. Its deep fishing holes, pretty beaches, and challenging rapids bring thousands of people each year to the remarkably green waters of this wild, undammed treasure.
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Redwoods hike: It's a 13-mile journey you won't forget

Redwoods hike: It's a 13-mile journey you won't forget

ORICK, Calif. — When the world's tallest trees are just one highlight of a hike — and maybe not even the main highlight — there's a good chance you've found a pretty spectacular place.
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Silver Falls State Park: A spring wonderland

Silver Falls State Park: A spring wonderland

Silver Falls State Park is one of Oregon's most popular parks, and this time of year it's easy to see why.
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