The vast rolling hills and snow-capped peaks of Eastern Oregon will capture the attention of any outdoor enthusiast. From the epic powder of Anthony Lakes Ski Resort to the rushing river rapids of the Owyhee, Eastern Oregon is a vast refuge for snow sport lovers, river runners, fishermen, hikers and cyclists. The picturesque scenery of the region is on par with the most heralded natural areas in the nation, highlighted by wonders like the Painted Hills and Hells Canyon, North America’s deepest river gorge.
Each September, the Eastern Oregon area glimmers with the spirit of the old West as the Pendleton Round-Up draws top rodeo professionals and tens of thousands of spectators from around the globe. The near century-old event is one of the nation’s grandest rodeos and features a four-day festival of competition, a special parade and other cultural events, all of which are infused with the rodeo’s constant theme of “Let’er buck!”
The rugged spirit and spectacular scenery of Eastern Oregon is further demonstrated each January, when mushers and their sled dogs compete in the Eagle Cap Extreme Sled Dog Race, Oregon’s only Iditarod And Yukon Quest qualifier. The region is known for providing true tests of will, evidenced by annual events like the Echo Red 2 Red XC mountain bike race, held annually each spring. In 2013 the Wilson Ranches Retreat in the town of Fossil served as a most-hospitable host to the world-renowned Tough Mudder obstacle course series, designed by British Special Forces to test strength, stamina and mental grit.
Eastern Oregon University in the adventurous town of La Grande serves as another athletic focal point for the region, while Baker City has the unique distinction of being home to one of North America’s premier grass tennis courts. Visitors from around the world come to play on the WimbleDon Grass Courts, selected as the National Outstanding Tennis Facility by the U.S. Tennis Association. The four grass courts not only host a number of competitive tournaments each year, but are available for public use at no cost — just one more example of the down home hospitality you’ll find throughout Oregon.