McKenzie Pass-Santiam Pass loop, Sisters

4.9
#1 of 7 in Outdoors in Sisters
Scenic Drive · Tourist Spot
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McKenzie Pass is a mountain pass in the Cascade Range in central Oregon, United States.
It is located at the border of Linn and Deschutes counties, approximately 20 mi northwest of Bend, between the Three Sisters to the south and Mt. Washington to the north. Oregon Route 242 passes over the pass.
At the summit of the pass, Oregon Route 242 crosses a 65sqmi lava flow just west of Sisters. Surrounded by lava, the Dee Wright Observatory was constructed in 1935 by Civilian Conservation Corps workers and named after their foreman. Visitors climb to the observatory to view the Cascade peaks visible from McKenzie Pass. Also near the summit is Clear Lake, a renowned location for fresh-water diving.
Highway 242 is not recommended for large trucks, trailers or motor homes due to numerous tight switchbacks. The pass is closed from November to July due to snow. You can plan Sisters trip in no time by asking Inspirock to help create your itinerary.
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McKenzie Pass-Santiam Pass loop reviews

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TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
240 reviews
Google
4.9
TripAdvisor
  • Just a beautiful way to see this area. Take it easy as it is a difficult drive. But worth it. Everyone should do this at least once. 
    Just a beautiful way to see this area. Take it easy as it is a difficult drive. But worth it. Everyone should do this at least once.  more »
  • A beautiful drive, lots of curves, some burned out areas, but still very beautiful. The lava fields in the middle are very interesting. The Dee Wright Observatory was something you will not find... 
    A beautiful drive, lots of curves, some burned out areas, but still very beautiful. The lava fields in the middle are very interesting. The Dee Wright Observatory was something you will not find...  more »
Google
  • Check if pass is open immediately before going. Check on Oregons Trip check.com
  • A rare place on earth that I've been lucky enough to experience

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