Growing up, I was a hopeless nerd (shut up) and waited for each long lonely summer to come to an end so I could take my place at the desk nearest Teacher in September. This may be why, no matter where I’ve lived, that fall is my favorite season. Autumn in Oregon—especially east of the Cascades—has a refreshing vibe that feels, counterintuitively, like new beginnings.
If you paddle, cycle, ski, hike or fly fish, you already know about Bend. We spent the weekend just rubbernecking around town (Ralph applying his real estate appraisal knowledge like a tour guide as we passed through the neighborhoods) and hanging out in the sun at the campsite, drinking beer and watching the dogs roll in the dirt.