So this is the New Year – Bend, Oregon 2009

To me, December 31st is a date to wipe the slate clean and to celebrate the coming of New Year with close friends. I’ve had some amazing New Years celebrations as well as a few were far from amazing. This year was at the top of “amazing” new years.

Back in November my good friend Alex suggested that we join him in Bend, Orgeon for a week long New Years celebration. As you might have read in the past, Bend has shown me something exciting every time ranging from spectacular sunsets to epic riding sessions. This trip was to be no different. Ten of my close friends and I all made the five hour trip from Boise over to Bend.

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Now I won’t bore you with the minute details but will do my best to give you a flavor of the trip activities.

First Few Days

One of Bend’s proudest assets is the Deschutes Brewery. They churn out delightful flavors such as Black Butte Porter, Mirror Pond Pale Ale, Green Lakes Organic, Inversion IPA, and a slew of others. We decided that a brewery tour was definitely in order. The hour and a half walk through gave us some great insight on the whole brewing process from start to finish with everything in between.

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Once finished with the beer tour we headed out on the town for nights festivities. Our first destination was Mcmenamins. We spent the majority of our night at this classy diverse hotel that took a former school and turned it into one the rad spots within Bend. Our apres New Years celebration took us to Summit, another bustling place.

New Years morning was a rough one for many of us but smiling faces and coffee/teas helped to liven up everyone’s spirits.

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On New Years day a few of us decided to head up towards Mt. Bachelor to see if we couldn’t find any spots to click the skis on and mess around on. Our first stop was at the Wanoga Snow Park. A fury of sleds both gravity and gasoline powered raced in a whirlwind around us. It was utter chaos. My buddy Seth thought that it was worth stopping for one quick shred sesh. Agreed.

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Next stop was a bit further up the road where a little rock drop gave way to an exteremly flat landing. Carnage but fun non-the-less.

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Stop three had us navigating this tiny pillow rock drop. Nothing special but another opportunity to lay down some tracks.

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Our final stop had us posted up for a group shot aboard a delightful candy apple red sleigh.

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The next day a few of our friends parted ways and headed back to reality. This left us with a bit more flexibility and an opportunity to take the snowmobiles out. Six of us headed back out to the Wanoga snow park to tandem up on three sleds (the real ones). We found a neat little spot to build a jump for us to mess around on. Unfortunately the light dipped below the mountains faster than anticipated and I had neglected to pack a flash. The high fives kept us going.

The Last Few Days

Old Man Winter had been huffing and puffing his icy breath across central Oregon from the fist day of our arrival. Rime ridden chairlifts and dense fog left Mt. Bachelor in the back of our minds for the majority of the trip. On this particular day the Old Man had decided to give us a break in the weather. Unmotivated by the recent pattern of weather kept us from establishing an early rise pattern. By the time we had finally pulled ourselves together it was close to twelve thirty. As we screamed up the Cascade Lakes Highway, Mt. Bachelor began to show it’s barren icy cap amidst blue bird skies.

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Our luck kept getting better. Two of Bachelor’s more enjoyable chairs, Outback and Northwestern, opened up after being closed for two days right as we arrived. Freshies and sunshine put big smiles on all of our faces as we rode until the patrollers made last call. Another radical day.

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As the days passed our crew dwindled in size. We were down to three guys for the remainder of the trip. Three snowmobiles waited to be paired up with three solo riders and we were the answer. We spent the next two days cruising around Bachelor’s backcountry looking for skiable lines and testing the limits of sleds.

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Oh, I forgot to mention the gun shooting. We had a hand gun field day. .454 magnum with 2in barrel, .45, .44, .38 and a .22.

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Good times. Sorry for the jumbled story telling. It’s been crazy coming home only to do laundry and pack for another week long adventure in the Sawtooths. Next post will be more organized. I want to give a special thanks to John Eakin for treating us so well, Bill & Tricia Smith for making us feel like family and letting us stay in your condo, Alex Eakin for putting this whole trip together and all the friends to made this one of my most favorite New Years of all time!

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~ by skier2435 on January 9, 2009.

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