Apres Brewski -Take 5: Bend, Oregon, USA
One of the best cures for a big night of drinking or road fatigue, or both in my case, is a bluebird Spring ski day in the mountains. Besides all the great craft beer in Bend they are also blessed with having Mt Bachelor only a short drive out of town. I'll spare you all the Vermont comparisons this time. One of the guys I met at Bend Brewing Company the night before was ready to take me back country with his friends the next morning, saying the conditions were going to be epic. However, lacking a few key back country tools (namely an avalanche beacon) we decided it was better for me to just hit up the local ski area this time around.
|Tons of sun and Pow as I get ready to cruise
around the backside of Mt Bachelor
With less than 100 cars in the parking lot and full blue sky, any fuzz from the night before had faded and I was ready to hit the mountain. Everyone I met to that point had been really friendly and it just kept going. Each ride up the lift was filled with smiles, tips on where to ski and well wishes on my beer journey. A few had even been to New Zealand and gave it great reviews as well. From hiking the ridge against gale force winds at the top to the lift, to dropping into untouched bowls of heavy Spring powder to a full lap around the backside of the mountain and several tree runs, I rode until my legs couldn't do it any longer and my face was cooked with sunshine. I collapsed into my car for a late lunch of granola bars, apples and more water and headed back to town with smile from ear to ear.
Boneyard Beer Company
|Lucky Dog! ...not much of a guard though
I also got a quick tour of the small but bustling brewery, which is in it's second year of operation. I predict they'll quickly outgrown this space if their reputation keeps on growing like it has in their first couple of years. In true build-it-yourself style the brewery was pieced together with used equipment from 13 or so breweries, and Boneyard was born. I thanked the nice folks at the brewery for their hospitality and went to get changed out of my ski gear. It was time to check out some of Bend's other beertastic venues!
|Cozy, snow pant friendly tap room at Boneyard Brewing