Smith Rock was more amazing than I had even imagined. It truly is breathtaking.
From the Painted Hills to Smith Rock, you drive the 45 minutes back to Prineville (Where we had stayed the night before) and then drove towards Redmond/Terrebonne for another 45 minutes or so. The views were so beautiful and the weather couldn’t have been more perfect. The kids in the back of the car were another story ;)
When visiting Smith Rock for the first time with three kids 5 and under, do NOT have high expectations to be able to hike to the top of every peak. We’ve been hiking enough times with our kids to realize that, so instead, we enjoyed the scenery of Smith Rock while just barely keeping our kids away from ledges.
We obviously have big plans for Smith Rock in the future, and next time I will definitely bring a hiking backpack for my 2 year old to
stay contained peacefully be carried around in. It was amazing to watch the rock climbers scale the sides of the massive rocks. Especially after we had all had our first Rock Climbing Lesson recently at The Rogue Rock Gym.
It is always a successful trip when we see our children exploring, discovering nature, and loving the time spent together.
I will have to admit that the more we are outside as a family, the less fighting and bickering happens between the kids. There really is something incredible that happens when my children are allowed to stretch their little bodies, climb, get dirty, and run free (away from ledges of course).
We really loved the trail that went right along with the river.
We would definitely recommend stocking up on tons of snacks and water if you’re going with little ones. Man, kids are always hungry; but we really wanted spend all day here, without having to leave for food, and to keep our kids hydrated and full meant less whining and tiredness.
A lot of people have asked what some of our favorite snacks are for our kids when traveling or hiking. We brought THESE along with us for our Bend trip, and the kids LOVED them! Violet is allergic to cashews, so we have to stay away from all nut-related snacks. So we pack a lot of fruit leathers, popcorn, breakfast bars, etc.
We stayed till about dusk, and headed back into Bend where we stayed for our 2nd night. From Smith Rock to Bend it was only about a 35 minute drive. We had spent so much time at Smith Rock, that by the time we arrived into Bend, checked into our Hotel and cleaned off the inch thick dusty dirt off of us, it was really late. We grabbed takeout Sushi and spent the evening at Farewell Bend Park.
You can see a recap of our entire Bend getaway HERE