Over Father’s Day weekend, we traveled over to Sunriver, OR, a place where some of my youngest and fondest memories were formed. When I was little, my dad built homes in Sunriver and later on, he was a fly-fishing guide on the Deschutes River, so I lived in the area off and on through my early years.
Although, if you ask anyone who knows me, my memory has never been particularly sharp, there are a few places that never seem to drift away into complete cognitive oblivion. Sunriver, OR and Paulina Lake, located in the Newberry National Volcanic Monument area, are two of the few places that create an instant sense of recognition. As a kid, my dad and I would drive up to Paulina Lake, camp and fish for hours.
During our quick trip over to Oregon a couple weeks ago, I snuck away with my camera for the day and headed south out of Sunriver along Century Drive. Mt. Bachelor sat off to the Northwest as I followed Century Drive across the river until I found patches of wild flowers on a gravel forest road.
I then backtracked to hit Highway 97 and headed up into the Newberry National Volcanic Monument. Along the way up to the lake, there were several scenic areas to pull off and snap a few shots.
I hopped out of the car at Paulina Creek Falls, walked to the lookout and then hiked the 1/4 mile down to the base of falls.
I then drove into the Paulina Lodge area and later over to the Obsidian Flow Trail. I hiked up through the Obsidian to catch a great view of the valley and the lake off in the distance.
I finished the route by driving over to East Lake before heading back down towards Sunriver. Although it wouldn’t get dark for a while, the sun was reflecting off the haze lingering over the mountains in the distance.
The next day, we took a quick trip up to Mt. Bachelor and hiked around Sparks Lake. Although it was cold, it was a great reason to get out of the car and stretch our legs.
Sometimes the best places to visit are not always those that are completely new and foreign, but rather those that hold a special place in your heart. There is no doubt Paulina Lake is definitely one of them. Thanks, dad, for all the great memories!