McKenzie-Santiam Pass Loop

Sisters, Oregon

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An 81.5-mile loop through the center of the Cascade Range, over two mountain passes, through lava flows and forests, and along rivers. The scenic byway travels through some of Oregon’s most beautiful and varied mountain landscapes. The two-lane highways are paved and have frequent turnouts. One stretch of Oregon Route 242 is quite narrow and has very tight corners. It is unsuitable for towed units or large vehicles more than 22 feet in length. Traffic on the scenic byway varies with the seasons, and summer weekends and holidays are generally quite busy. Special attractions: Volcanic features and lava flows; rivers and lakes; extensive vistas; Three Sisters, Mount Jefferson, and Mount Washington Wilderness Areas; Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail; developed and undeveloped hot springs; waterfalls. This eTrail is a complete description of a scenic drive with a route map and information on the best travel seasons, interesting sites, recreation opportunities, camping locations, and much more.

McKenzie-Santiam Pass Loop Professional Review and Guide

"An 81.5-mile loop through the center of the Cascade Range, over two mountain passes, through lava flows and forests, and along rivers. The scenic byway travels through some of Oregon’s most beautiful and varied mountain landscapes. The two-lane highways are paved and have frequent turnouts. One stretch of Oregon Route 242 is quite narrow and has very tight corners. It is unsuitable for towed units or large vehicles more than 22 feet in length.

Traffic on the scenic byway varies with the seasons, and summer weekends and holidays are generally quite busy. Special attractions: Volcanic features and lava flows; rivers and lakes; extensive vistas; Three Sisters, Mount Jefferson, and Mount Washington Wilderness Areas; Pacific Crest National Scenic Trail; developed and undeveloped hot springs; waterfalls. This eTrail is a complete description of a scenic drive with a route map and information on the best travel seasons, interesting sites, recreation opportunities, camping locations, and much more."

Activity Type: Scenic Drives
Nearby City: Sisters
Distance: 81.5
Season: Sections closed by winter snow from about November to early July
Local Contacts: Deschutes and Willamette National Forests
Driving Directions: Directions to McKenzie-Santiam Pass Loop

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May 2018