Marvin Walder/The Broadside
Since it’s creation in 2012, the Bend Whitewater Park has served as a great attraction for river floaters and surfers alike.
Its location along the Deschutes River, right beneath the Old Mill District and upstream from Drake Park, has been a go-to destination for outdoorsy locals and tourists over the years.
Surprisingly, the park has stayed popular despite the pandemic. This summer saw large amounts of floaters tackling the rapids while trying to beat the summer heat, and the year-round community of river surfers is as active as ever. Bend Park and Recreation District has done its best to keep the park open to the public, and thus far has successfully relied upon the responsibility and respectfulness of parkgoers to keep things orderly.
Bend is known for seeing parks like these as largely beneficial to the community, and it shows, with the dedicated individuals who enjoy them year round. Some of the surfers have mentioned that trying out river surfing has led them to having a fun and active hobby, and has also introduced them to an amazing community of locals who share the same passion.
Local parks seem to offer a little something for everyone, so maybe pay them a visit, and see what they might offer you.