We Sing the Slopes Fantastic

OREGON :: MT. BACHELOR

    Photo: courtesy, Mt. Bachelor Ski Resort

MOUNTAIN STATS:

SUMMIT, 9,065 feet
VERTICAL, 3,365 feet
SKIABLE ACRES, 3,683
ANNUAL SNOWFALL, 350 inches
LIFT TICKET, $46
800-829-2442, www.mtbachelor.com

THE U.S. FOREST SERVICE gave top skier Bill Healy, of the Army's Tenth Mountain Division, permission to put three rope tows up the face of central Oregon's Bachelor Butte way back in 1958. Since then, his dream come true, now known as Mt. Bachelor, has grown to 71 runs serviced by ten lifts. And for those seeking big air, there are three terrain parks.
WHY WE LOVE IT: With as much as 30 feet of snow piling up annually in the mountains of Deschutes National Forest, Mt. Bachelor is one of the Pacific Northwest's treasures, and an agreement with the Forest Service has spurned commercial development, preserving its wild side.
NUMBER-ONE RUN: Head for the Northwest Express chair and exit, if you dare, to Devil's Backbone, a mettle-testing black diamond. Though steeper up top, it's good and bumpy almost all the way down its nefarious spine.
HOT LODGE: The Inn of the Seventh Mountain, between Bend and Mt. Bachelor, is the place to sleep if you want first chair the next morning. The lodge-style decor—wooden beams, fireplaces, leather recliners—just oozes cozy, and with the Cascades so close by, grand views are there for the feasting. (Doubles, $135-$195; 800-452-6810, www.seventhmountain.com)
SOUL PATCH: Hit the Lodge, in Bend, for pints of local 20" Brown Ale and scrumptious buffalo burgers. Then make good and sure you patronize the McMenamins folks—God love 'em—renovators of, among others, the old St. Francis school in downtown Bend, home to a hotel with Turkish baths, a pub restaurant, and a throwback cinema.

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