Attractions and Recreation
Eastern Oregon is an outdoor lover’s paradise with recreational opportunities for anyone who loves beautiful scenery, thrilling adventure or the joy of a lazy afternoon casting a line. Our region is defined by majestic mountains, sparking lakes and rivers, hiking and biking trails and four seasons of outdoor activities.
One of our most popular recreation destinations is Anthony Lakes Resort. This popular ski resort is near Baker City and La Grande, has a triple chairlift, vertical drop of 900 feet and a summit elevation of 8,000 feet. With a terrain that is mostly for intermediate and expert level skiers and snowboarders, Anthony Lakes Resort attracts visitors from throughout the Pacific Northwest. In the summer, Anthony Lakes Resort is transformed into the perfect getaway and destination for weekend fun. They offer a campground, hiking, mountain biking, and the Starbottle restaurant serving locally sourced food and microbrews. Best of all is the view of Anthony Lake and Phillips Lake!
In Grant County alone there are thousands of acres of public land offering backpacking, cross country skiing, snowmobiling, hunting, fishing, horseback riding, or scenic road trips on the Blue Mountain Scenic Byway. In Union County, visitors can enjoy the Strawberry Mountain Wilderness with miles of pristine trails running through beautiful natural environments. Elevation ranges from about 4,000 feet to 9,038 feet. In addition, the Mount Emily Recreation Area offers 3,700 acres of opportunities for mountain biking, hiking, off-road driving and horseback riding just minutes from La Grande. For something different, visitors to Harney County can visit the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge – a large wetland reserve. Campgrounds are also common here, many offering a wide range of facilities.
The John Day River and Magone Lake provide opportunities to fish, swim and relax on the water as well. Heading to the river or lake after work on the weekend is a favorite pastime for many of our residents.
Other popular destinations include the Painted Hills, John Day River Territory, Steens Mountain, Hells Canyon, the Alvord Desert, Cove-Union Farm Loop and touring the Geiser Grand Hotel or trying the Oregon Ghost Towns tours.
Eastern Oregon is home to incredible scenic byways with vistas that will take your breath away. Whether driving through the mountains and gazing upon crystal clear, sparking lakes or admiring the prairie land rolling by, our scenic byways make driving through Eastern Oregon a pleasurable adventure.
Sports are a popular activity in our region. For example, John Day is proud to be the home of the nicest sports complex in eastern Oregon which has 4 baseball fields, 2 softball fields, 3 soccer fields, and a running trail. It also has a picnic area, fishing pond, and a jungle gym. Grant Union's track and football field are open to the public year-round.
There are five golf courses to enjoy in the region. To spend a day on the greens, head to Baker City and the Quail Ridge Golf Course or to Grant County where there are three golf courses - one in John Day, one in Seneca, and one in Dayville. Union county is home to Buffalo Peak golf course in Union.
Our region is home to four large community pools, including the Veterans Memorial Pool and Cove in La Grande – just two of the many opportunities residents have to enjoy summertime fun.