Featured photo for McKenzie Highway, OR

McKenzie Highway, OR

Due to a tip from Lisa (thanks!) I decided to take a longer way to Bend to check out the McKenzie Highway from Eugene to Sisters (along Highways 126 and 242). It was as gorgeous as she had claimed, if not moreso. The fall colors reminded me of that brilliant stretch of aspen from Ouray to Silverton in Colorado, and yet there was something more intimate and certainly less touristy about the McKenzie Highway. A light drizzle trickled softly among the brilliant yellow leaves dangling overhead, while secluded homes and rustic barns appeared occasionally across the road from the McKenzie River. Photos are here.

Hooray for more fall colors!  This stretch of Highway 126 in Oregon was super beautiful, reminding me a little bit of the stretch of US-550 from Ouray to Silverton in Colorado.
The McKenzie Highway runs by the McKenzie river, from Eugene to Sisters.
More gorgeous colors.
The road narrowed along Highway 242 and became a lot more twisty.
Brilliant yellow leaves dangled above while navigating the winding roads.
It may have been drizzling but not enough to put the top up until a couple of miles from the top.
At the top of McKenzie pass the land gave way to lots of lava rocks.  Unfortunately, due to the rain and fog, I was not able to see the Three Sisters (mountain peaks) from here.
The east side of the pass was dry and clear, however.  I actually took this photo 2 months ago while going up & down this side on my bike, a 13-mile climb!