McKenzie Pass-Santiam Pass loop, Sisters

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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.
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McKenzie Pass-Santiam Pass loop Reviews
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  • It was overcast and snowy /raining when we drove up Rt 20, (242 was closes) but the views were gorgeous. My husband got out in the rain to take the short hike down to one of the waterfalls. He said it...  more »
  • You have to experience this area on a motorcycle. Great riding over the pass, great views, several places to stop & look at . Beautiful mtn. ranges  more »
  • We did the McKenzie Pass route out of Sisters on our way to Florence. Though the smoke from wildfires was evident, the view of the Three Sisters was still amazing. Our first stop was the Dee Wright Ob...  more »

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