The Oregon I Bet You STILL Don’t Know

The Oregon I bet you STILL don’t know.

As you can see, when I say eastern Oregon I do not mean Bend as some travel bloggers do. I mean further east as in closer to Idaho than the coast. Not many people think of beautiful conifer forests, waterfalls, hot springs, fossil beds, historic sites, roaming elk herds, nor majestic mountain lakes when they think about true eastern Oregon. In fact, I would say not many people outside of the few who live here spend much time thinking about eastern Oregon if they think about it at all. This seems to be particularly true when people are making their travel plans, and that is perhaps the best part about it out here. If you dare to go against the grain (and do a little bit of roughin’ it) there are numerous trails with brilliant views, and historic structures of some form awaiting your discovery year-round with little to no crowds. Read on to learn more about the eastern Oregon I bet you STILL don’t know!

Did you know about the National Forests and other public lands in eastern Oregon with miles of all types of trails?

Hike, bike, backpack, ride a horse or ATV, maybe even Nordic ski! It’s all here depending on the time of year.

A pristine stream during a summer hike in the Steens Mountain Wilderness, Oregon
A wintry, Nordic ski trail that can be found in the Wallowa-Whitman National Forest, Oregon
It’s a short, uphill hike to this breathtaking mountain lake found in the Malheur National Forest, Oregon
On a trail of the Winom-Frazier OHV Complex in the Umatilla National Forest, Oregon – Photo courtesy of RiderPlanet USA.

If you prefer to have a more relaxing visit you can simply camp along a lake, river, or visit a hot spring.

Ritter Hot Springs, Oregon – Photo courtesy of  Zach Urness/ Statesman Journal.
Did you know that eastern Oregon also has one of the most renowned fossil beds in the USA?

They have discovered such unusual fossils like those of ancient, small mammals.

A marsh “rhino” tusk fossil which can be viewed at the Thomas Condon Palentology Center of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Oregon – Photo courtesy of NPS
Did you know eastern Oregon had its own gold rush?

Asian immigrants were participants, and there are even a few active claims still. 

Kam Wah Chung exterior
This strange building holds some incredible wonders. If you are interested in old Chinese medicine and the influence immigrants had on the gold rush you should consider taking the time to visit the historic Kam Wah Chung in John Day, Oregon – Photo courtesy of Oregon State Parks.
Sumpter Valley Dredge
Gold mining was much more than sifting through pans by hand. To learn more visit the Sumpter Valley Dredge in Sumpter Valley, Oregon! – Photo courtesy of Oregon State Parks
Did you know eastern Oregon has fire look outs that are still in operation during the summer?

Their often rugged roads end in some of the best views perfect for romantic sunrises or sunsets and dark sky photography. You can probably stop by and have a chat with the look out too!

A starry night at Dixie look out of the Malheur National Forest, Oregon – Photo courtesy of Matt Franklin
Did you know. . .I purposely did not give you a lot of specific details?

What good is an adventure if you don’t get to put in the effort to discover it for yourself?! I myself have been disappointed by going to places travel bloggers have already given nearly every detail away about. Putting in the time and effort to find these and other hidden gems out here is one of the reasons I fell so in love with it that I now live out here.  I have a continual sense of excitement about the next beautiful creek or historic remnants I may find on my next outing.  I do not want to potentially ruin that sense of excitement for you. Come out and discover it further for yourself! I will give you a hint though: having a vehicle, particularly one for rough dirt roads, is a good idea.

I hope you enjoy whatever your next adventure is! I must admit I hope it is out here.

The Montana Snowbowl

— History — 

Created in 1962, The Montana Snowbowl is what I would consider “Missoula’s Ski Resort.” Over the years, Snowbowl has remained almost exactly the same which is part of its charm. The resort still has a small-town feel despite the large crowds it draws. The most notable development in recent years opened this year with the addition of the Snowpark lift. Prior to this addition the resort catered more towards intermediate and advanced skiers with beginners sticking to cat tracks and a few easy runs. This addition is a great upgrade to the mountain, and I look forward to seeing what the future has in store for the mountain.

— Location —

Snowbowl is located 13 miles north of Missoula, Montana and is about a 25-minute drive from downtown Missoula. A paved road covers the first 8 miles, but the last five miles is a gravel road that can get a little treacherous if you aren’t properly prepared. Most vehicles traveling to Snowbowl should have four wheel drive and chains or snow tires in order to deal with the rough winter conditions.

— The Resort — 

Snowbowl has lots to offer whether it is the mountain itself, food, gear, or lodging. At the resort you will discover three lifts, one t-bar, and one rope-tow which provides access to 950+ acres of skiable territory. All the chair lifts are two seaters and only one of the lifts begins at the base of the mountain which results in some long lines on weekend mornings but those crowds quickly disperse. The lodge itself contains two restaurants, The Last Run and The Double Diamond Café. Both of these restaurants have good food, plenty of seating, and a fireplace to warm up by. Snowbowl also has a rental shop for all the gear you might need, a ski school with fantastic instructors, and Gelandesprung Lodge. Gelandesprung is the available lodging above the rental shop and is essentially ski in/out lodging with different room layouts and a community hot tub. All in all, Snowbowl is a wonderful small town ski resort and one of the best parts about living in Missoula.

Photo Gallery

Small town feel, big town dreams

Drone View

We just bought our dream home in Peoria. It’s much bigger than our last home and we sold most of our furniture when we moved from St. Louis. Now we know where we’re living, it’s time to pick out some furniture. Check out the pictures from the listing!

Front of house picture
Here is our dream home! I can’t wait until it’s spring and I can see all the great landscaping in bloom!
Second Living room Picture
This room is huge! We are trying to figure out how we want to arrange it.
Kitchen
This is truly my dream kitchen!
Family room picture with fireplace
I can’t wait to have a fire in the fireplace and snuggle up with a good book!
Guest bedroom
One of three guest bedrooms.
Guest bedroom 2 - Pink
Second guest bedroom. There is a third guest bedroom on the upper level too. One of these will inevitably become Kyle’s IU room.
Hall bathroom
I love the decor in this bathroom! The tile in the shower continues the brown and blue theme.
Master bedroom
These rooms are so big! I will probably need a bigger bed!
Master bathroom
The master bathroom has a unique style, and I am all here for it!
Master closet
This closet is a dream!
Laundry Room
A great laundry room with a custom, hand-painted mural. The washer and dryer are practically new!
Basement Bar 2
A shot of the basement bar area. Custom painting, copper sink, mini fridge. A great place for entertaining. The door to the right of the bar holds the utilities and irrigation system controls and a crawl space.
Basement Den Picture
The door at the bottom of the stairs is great unfinished storage with tons of shelves. The den will be a great hangout space. Now we just have to figure out where the foosball table goes.
Basement bedroom
One of many guests bedrooms. There are built-in storage and desk; this room will likely be a guest/craft room.
Basement Bathroom
Elegantly styled basement 3/4 bathroom with custom shower curtain.
Backyard picture 2
Backyard and patio picture. Stunning professionally landscaped backyard. Twinkle lights adorn the pergola with a great wooden swing.
Kitchen Picture 2
Great apron sink, concrete countertops, marble-topped island and a Sub-zero refrigerator.
Kitchen 3
The stove will be my pride and joy! A Viking double oven with a flat top!
Another picture of the kitchen
I am very excited about the Miele coffee system!
Dining room picture
A beautiful chandelier graces the center of the formal dining room.
Study room picture 2
A smaller room which was formerly used as a study or an office. How will we use it?

Let me know if you have any ideas how to arrange the rooms. I am open to suggestions!

Ten Interesting Things to Explore in Montana

Glacier National Park, Going to the Sun Road

1. Visit Garnet Ghost Town – Drummond, Montana

Garnet has been named one of “America’s Coolest Ghost Towns” by Travel + Leisure. Garnet is home to a preserved gold rush town. In Garnet, experience the ways of the past, and experience your inner frontier. Experience the real Wild West! Garnet is near Missoula, Montana.

Garnet Ghost Town
Photo Credit: Laura Kelly Information and License

2. Explore the Garden of One Thousand Buddhas – Arlee, Montana

Designed to be a spiritual pilgrimage destination for people of many faiths, the Garden of One Thousand Buddhas is a sight that is sure to bring peace and mindfulness.

The Garden of One Thousand Buddhas
Photo Credit: Flea8888 Information and License

3. Experience the Montana Vortex and House of Mystery – Columbia Falls, Montana

The Montana Vortex and House of Mystery is a place that makes one reorient their understanding of physics and nature. The experience is sure to be mind-blowing! The location is an internationally known sacred site. Native Americans often visit.

Montana Vortex and House of Mystery
Photo Credit: sporst Information and License

4. Travel Glacier National Park and the World-Renowned Going to the Sun Road

Visit the Crown of the Continent and experience nature at its best! Glacier National Park (United States) is one-half of the world’s first international peace park with Waterton Lakes National Park (Canada) being the other-half to form Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park. Glacier National Park is designated a Biosphere Reserve by the Man and the Biosphere Programme of the United National Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Waterton-Glacier International Peace Park is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site by the Convention Concerning the Protection of the World Cultural and Natural Heritage. Plus, Glacier National Park and its sister park, Waterton Lakes National Park of Canada, are recognized as an International Dark Sky Park by the International Dark Sky Association (IDA). One can see breathtaking views in Glacier National Park and on the Going-to-the-Sun Road!

Glacier National Park, Going to the Sun Road
Photo Credit: Mountain walrus Information and License

5. Encounter Yellowstone National Park and the Largest Supervolcano on the North American Continent!

Yellowstone National Park is the first national park in the United States of America and widely considered the first national park in the world! The supervolcano located at Yellowstone National Park is one of the few supervolcanoes around the globe. The cornerstone of the Roosevelt Arch at the North Entrance of the Park in Gardiner, Montana, was laid by President Theodore Roosevelt.

Yellowstone National Park Waterfall
Photo Credit: Scott Catron Information and License

6. Discover the Spectacular Great Falls of the Missouri River, known by the Lewis and Clark Expedition to Be a Grand Sight

Visit the Lewis and Clark Interpretive Center in Great Falls, Montana, near the falls to learn more about Lewis and Clark and the falls. Seeing the Great Falls of the Missouri River will connect individuals to history!

Great Falls of the Missouri River
Photo Credit: Tim1965 Information and License

7. Encounter the Ringing Rocks of Montana

The Ringing Rocks of Montana are a natural phenomenon. The rocks will allow you to hear nature! The Ringing Rocks are near Butte, Montana.

Montana Ringing Rocks
Photo Credit: Bureau of Land Management Information and License

8. Voyage to Pompeys Pillar, and See William Clark’s, of Lewis and Clark, Signature

Pompeys Pillar, near Billings, Montana, bears the only remaining evidence of the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Visit Pompeys Pillar and experience the Lewis and Clark Expedition!

Pompeys Pillar in Montana
Photo Credit: Bob Wick, Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Information and License

9. Take a Scenic Cruise to Wild Horse Island on the Crystal-Clear Flathead Lake

The world-recognized Flathead Lake is home to the Wild Horse Island. Take a relaxing cruise around Flathead Lake and run with the “Wild Horses!”

Flathead Lake
Photo Credit: Paul Frederickson Information and License

10. Visit the Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument

The Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument contains a United States National Cemetery, Custer National Cemetery. The Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument includes self-guided tours that have audio.

Little Bighorn Battlefield National Monument
Photo Credit: Durwood Brandon Information and License

 

Nicolas R. Ream, the author, is studying Marketing, Management, Entrepreneurship, Leadership, and Pre-Law at the University of Montana in Missoula, Montana. Nicolas works at Montana Heritage Home Builders, Inc., a high-performance luxury custom home builder in Columbia Falls, Montana.

Nicolas Ream
Nicolas R. Ream

Connect with Nicolas: Facebook Twitter Instagram LinkedIn

References and Sources: See hyperlinks, also personal experience and knowledge.

This blog post has been created in the BMKT 440: Marketing Analytics class with Professor Mario Schulzke.

5 Reasons Why You Need to Ride in Montana

You know how everyone from Montana says “Montana’s the last, best place”? Well they also say “Montana’s the last best place to go horseback riding”.

Conway Tweetie glancing at wild flowers

Here are the reasons why you need to mark “a horse back ride in MT” off your bucket list.

1. The connection that you feel between the horse and the wild Montana landscape, it feels like it all becomes one.

2. You have the one in a million chance to feel the freshness of all four seasons in a single ride.

3. Sun- gaze at the big sky filled with blue and cotton ball clouds that are above you.

Montana Sunset

4. Riding in MT will increase your love for life while peeking over the breath taking scenery.

 

5. As the great Dixie Chicks would say the “Wide Open Spaces” makes MT irresistible.

Rio Warbar grazing fresh green grass

“Don’t get so busy making a living that you forget to make a life” -Dolly Parton

By Desiree Altmaier