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When is the best time to visit Crater Lake?

Timing your visit to Crater Lake depends on which activities you most enjoy. Summer, obviously, is the most popular time to visit because the park is most accessible. In addition to viewing the lake from the rim or by boat in the caldera, there are opportunities for hiking, camping and learning about the lake’s history…

Can I visit Crater Lake in June?

Glad to hear you’re focusing some of your visit on Crater Lake National Park. It’s perhaps Oregon’s most unique feature and an attraction I routinely recommend. June still isn’t considered high season for visiting Crater Lake, but your chances will start rapidly improving for seeing more of the park. While there likely will still be…

What are good things to do in the Grants Pass, Ashland and Medford areas?

Greetings from Southern Oregon. Many attractions in this region depend on the season and how active visitors are. The Grants Pass area is renowned as the gateway to the wild and scenic section of the Rogue River. As such, it is a destination for whitewater rafting and fishing. For those who prefer to see the…

What are the best trails in Southern Oregon?

Greetings from Southern Oregon, Our outdoors writers always tout that the Pacific Crest Trail runs through our region, through the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument, Soda Mountain Wilderness and Sky Lakes Wilderness. Of course, those areas are most popular for longer, overnight treks. If you want a relatively easy day hike, consider locals’ favorite, the Table Rocks….

What is the best time of year to visit the Rogue-Umpqua Byway to see the waterfalls?

Greetings from Southern Oregon, The most commonly recommended time to travel the Rogue-Umpqua Scenic Byway is June through October, mainly to ensure clear roads, fair weather and more daylight hours. Volumes of water running in the falls largely depend on wintertime precipitation. We’re off to a good start for this year, considering the flood warnings…

I will be visiting Southern Oregon in March. Is this a good time to go mushroom foraging?

Hi Emily, I gather that you’re after morels, which are this region’s signature springtime mushrooms. The actual season depends largely on elevation. If we get some warm weather in February (50s), which is not uncommon, there can be early flushes of mushrooms in March, particularly in areas burned over by forest fire the previous year….

What are some fun things to do in the Roseburg area? We like museums, scenic drives and local attractions. -Terry L.

Perhaps the most well-known attraction in the Roseburg area is Wildlife Safari, a few miles away in the smaller town of Winston. Speaking from personal experience, this is fun for kids and adults alike. Here’s a story from the Mail Tribune newspaper’s Joy magazine about it: http://www.mailtribune.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070620/JOY/706200302&cid=sitesearch There’s also the Douglas County Museum of Natural…

What are the most beautiful sites in Southern Oregon? What is the best beach for RVs?

In the Southern Oregon Region, the most beautiful site arguably is Crater Lake, the centerpiece of the state’s only national park and a sacred site to native tribes long before settlers “discovered it.” The summertime and wintertime landscapes each show unique facets of this natural wonder. In Southern Oregon, there are several sites I recommend…

What are some of the best spots to view fall leaves between Crater Lake and Lakeview?

Greetings from Southern Oregon, West of Crater Lake in northern Jackson County, there are stands of maple that turn orange and crimson this time of year. East of Crater Lake, the fall color show is put on by native aspens. The main concentration is in the Fort Klamath area. But there are numerous groves in…

What is there to see and do in Grants Pass? Are the roads easily accessible?

Grants Pass is the gateway to the Wild and Scenic section of the Rogue River. As such, it is renowned for its whitewater rafting. For those who prefer to see the river from a motorized craft, there is Hellgate Jetboat Excursions. Grants Pass also is near Oregon Caves National Monument, the state’s oldest and one…

What are some good kid-friendly activities in Roseburg?

Whenever I vacationed as a child in Roseburg, we always went to Wildlife Safari in nearby Winston. This is the ultimate kid-friendly activity around Roseburg. Check out this story from the Mail Tribune newspaper’s Joy magazine about the attraction. If you still need more to keep the kids busy, there’s also the fish ladder at Winchester Dam on the Umpqua…

My wife and I will be traveling four days from Bend to the Oregon Caves. What should we do in between?

If Oregon Caves already is on your itinerary and you’re coming from Bend, you shouldn’t miss Oregon’s only national park, Crater Lake. Along with the Caves, it’s this region’s premiere attraction, as noted in this recent story for the Mail Tribune newspaper. If you’re coming from Bend south, the most logical route is through the Cascades right past Crater Lake on…

We live in Northern CA and are looking to go visit a town in Oregon that has nice scenery, shopping, quaint hotels, things to do but not too long of a driving distance since we are looking at a long weekend away – possibly over Thanksgiving. What do you recommend?

It sounds like the town of Ashland is right up your alley. Just off Interstate 5 and just north of the California border, this town is, arguably the region’s main tourist destination. It boasts a wide variety of restaurants and accommodations, including boutique hotels and many bed-and-breakfasts, plus the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Cabaret Theater and…

Where is there good berry picking in the Bandon area?

The South Coast is one of the best places to U-pick blueberries, with the prime location being Langlois, just south of Bandon and north of Port Orford. There are a couple of family-run farms just off Highway 101 that mark their location with signs. Look for Jensen’s, which is organic. Berrying usually is at its height in August,…

I’m coming to Ashland to see the Oregon Shakespeare Festival. I want to check out some breweries, some wineries, some natural wonders…. I’d LOVE some ‘local’ (that is, somewhat off-the-obvious-path) suggestions of things to check out. -Kristin G.

You’re on the right track with plans to partake of the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, Ashland’s claim to fame. If you haven’t already, see the Mail Tribune newspaper’s guide to the festival for news and reviews. If you want to take in the region’s primary natural wonders, plan a day to visit Crater Lake, Oregon’s only national park, or…

We are planning a business trip to Ashland in late July. Could you tell me of interesting sites in that area? Any ideas for day trips? Any wineries?

If you’re planning a trip to Ashland, don’t miss Oregon Shakespeare Festival, arguably the town’s claim to fame. See the Mail Tribune newspaper’s guide to the festival. A nice day trip from Ashland is Jacksonville, a national historic landmark that hosts the outdoor Britt Music Festival concert series into October. Or go on an artisan-food tasting tour in Central…

We’re touring by car from Vancouver, British Columbia and have 3-4 days available to see some of the highlights of Oregon. Are there any quaint and atmopheric towns in Oregon? We’d like to see mountains, lakes and the coast too. Can you suggest any must-see destinations?

I’m not sure how far into Oregon you were planning on driving, but if you’re looking for atmosphere in the southern part of the state, Ashland is the town for you. Surrounded by mountains (Cascades and Siskiyous), its vibe is about as European as you’ll find almost anywhere in Oregon. Just off Interstate 5 and…

Want to take my wife on a short three day getaway. Would like for her to see a Bald Eagle and have a romantic view of the mountains, ccean, or lake. Any suggestions?

There’s one place that stands above all the other nationwide for viewing bald eagles. That’s the Klamath Basin region of Southern Oregon. While late winter is the prime time to see them, you stand a good chance during other times of the year.  Here is a great story in the Mail Tribune about viewing bald…

What’s the best place to golf near Medford? – K.D.

There are two really great public play courses I would recommend you check out. One is Eagle Point Golf Course. This is a Robert Trent Jones design and one of his last pieces of work done in his storied career.  It is not expensive and good pace of play.  They are going through bankruptcy but…