We’ve partnered with Mt. Bachelor to offer the best deal around
By Yoko Minoura
Most locals will tell you the key to surviving winter in Central Oregon isn’t staying inside the whole time.
Instead, the answer is playing in the snow. As often as possible.
And there’s no better way to do that than to ski, snowboard or snowshoe at Mt. Bachelor, Bend’s own mountain. The ski resort – which boasts several terrain parks and a tubing hill along with more than 4,300 skiable acres, according to its website – opened for the winter season the day after Thanksgiving.
Unlike other ski resorts, Mt. Bachelor does not provide any onsite lodging. Instead, as it has for several years running, it partners with Tetherow, roughly 20 minutes away, to allow out-of-towners to enjoy the full winter experience.
Guests who book rooms and lift tickets together can save up to $90 per night on a room and skip the line at the mountain’s ticket window, according to Hotel General Manager David Lenke. Instead, guests’ ski passes will be ready to pick up at the front desk during check-in.
“(It will be) a door-to-door experience,” he said. “I think Tetherow and Bachelor complement each other very well.”
Visitors can choose from single-day lift tickets or multi-day passes, good for two to six days on the mountain. Families can take advantage of an additional perk: with the purchase of every adult pass good for three or more days, they can receive one free kid’s pass, allowing children up to 12 years to ski or ride the same number of days.
Tetherow runs a shuttle from its property to Mt. Bachelor three times a day, depending on demand, for $10 per person round-trip. Also during ski season, The Row restaurant features an Apres Ski menu of small plates, though some guests may want to just order room service and relax in front of the in-room fireplace.
And there is one big additional draw this season – the opening of Mt. Bachelor’s newest lift, dubbed Cloudchaser. The lift, which opens today, will serve 13 new runs, totaling more than 6 miles, on the mountain’s southeast flank, according to Mt. Bachelor’s website.
The new terrain served by Cloudchaser will make the resort the fifth-largest in the nation, the website reported. The new high-speed quad should begin spinning in time for Christmas.
As for winter’s biggest variable, many locals are optimistic.
“Growing up here, it’s kind of shown me the best snow years tend to show up after an El Niño year, and that’s what we’re lined up for,” Lenke said. “Maybe not quite a record year, but definitely an above-average year.”
Even though Bachelor is growing, he said the best part about the ski resort is that the slopes generally don’t feel overcrowded.
“The thing I love about Bachelor is when they have (all the lifts) open, they can have 10,000 people up there and it doesn’t feel like it,” Lenke said.
An occasional skier himself, he added, “I may even have to rent some equipment this year and go out and try it.”