Discover the outdoor wonders of Prineville, Central Oregon!

Endless recreation opportunities in this breathtaking city, from exciting watersports to scenic hiking and thrilling biking.

Cycling in Prineville

Explore the stunning Crooked River Canyon and the mountainous terrain of the Ochocos as you navigate our scenic bikeway, gravel routes, and eclectic trail systems.

Water Sports in Prineville

Experience the serenity of Crook County's waterways, where ample opportunities to fish, boat, swim, paddleboard, camp, or even stargaze, await you.

Prineville offers diverse hiking trails, showcasing lush forests, rugged canyons, and stunning vistas that cater to adventure-seekers and hikers of all skill levels.

Tee off along our tranquil fairways as you take in the beautiful landscape of the High Desert at Prineville's choice golf courses: Meadow Lakes and Prineville Golf Club.

A plethora of exploration activities for nature enthusiasts and adventure seekers.

From its dark night activities to its iconic landmarks, rockhounding activities, diverse bird species, and off-road adventures, Prineville is a haven for outdoor exploration.

Rockhounding in Prineville

Crook County, rightfully known as the rockhound capital of the world, offers enthusiasts the chance to discover beautiful agates, jasper, thunder eggs, and other unique minerals.

The rural nature of Crook County creates the perfect environment for unforgettable stargazing, boasting excellent opportunities to observe the night sky and constellations.

Whether in town or deep in the majestic Ochoco Forest, Crook County is home to several iconic natural and historic landmarks that are must-sees when you visit us.

Birdwatching in Prineville

Are you a bird enthusiast looking for a picturesque location to indulge in birdwatching? Look no further than the Crooked River Wetlands.

Come and Gaze at the Wondrous Starry Nights of Central Oregon

Dark Sky Experiences

Prineville, home of the first International Dark Sky Park in Oregon, offers a captivating array of stargazing activities that extend beyond the confines of Prineville Reservoir State Park. This picturesque region, nestled within the Crooked River Caldera, boasts a rich natural heritage and a commitment to preserving its pristine night skies. Visitors to this area have ample opportunities to witness the beauty of the cosmos and the overall allure of the night sky.

Discover Prineville Reservoir State Park: A Haven for Stargazing

Prineville Reservoir State Park in Central Oregon has been recognized as Oregon’s first International Dark Sky Park, an esteemed certification awarded by the International Dark Sky Association. This prestigious designation highlights the park’s commitment to minimizing light pollution and promoting clear, unobstructed views of the night sky. Visitors to the park are treated to a mesmerizing celestial spectacle, with countless stars illuminating the night sky, unobscured by artificial light. The park offers a unique opportunity to experience the wonders of space, making it an ideal destination for astronomy enthusiasts and nature lovers alike.

Leave No Trace

Be a Good Steward of the Land and Leave No Trace

When recreating in a dark sky location, keep in mind these Leave No Trace Dark Sky & Artificial Lighting Guidelines to support dark sky efforts to minimize light pollution.

Photo Courtesy of Travel Oregon

Immerse Yourself in Dark Sky Programs and Activities

The park’s dedication to preserving the natural beauty of the night sky is evident through their engaging dark-sky programs and activities. Visitors can participate in ranger-led stargazing sessions, educational talks, and engaging astronomy-themed activities. From laser-guided constellation tours to peering through powerful telescopes to observe celestial wonders like the moon’s craters and Jupiter’s moons, the park offers something for everyone. Additionally, on occasion there are guest speakers from esteemed organizations such as the Sunriver Nature Center & Observatory and the Sisters Astronomy Club that provide enriching insights into the mysteries of the universe.

A Multifaceted Stargazing Adventure

Beyond Prineville Reservoir State Park

In addition to the mesmerizing experiences offered at Prineville Reservoir State Park, visitors can embark on a weekend of exploration and discovery with guided tours that encompass breathtaking hikes, enriching naturalist interpretation, and captivating stargazing opportunities. These adventures, expertly curated by local guides, like Wanderlust Tours, provide a holistic understanding of the region’s geological significance and its profound connection to the expansive night sky, making it an ideal destination for those seeking an immersive and educational stargazing experience.

While Prineville Reservoir State Park serves as a beacon for stargazing enthusiasts, the region offers a diverse tapestry of outdoor experiences. Beyond the nocturnal allure, daytime adventures, such as kayaking on Prineville Reservoir, guided nature walks, and exploratory tours provide ample opportunities for nature enthusiasts to appreciate the area’s natural beauty and diverse wildlife, ensuring a well-rounded and enriching experience for visitors of all ages.

Photo courtesy of Joey Hamilton

THE OREGON OUTBACK

Dark Sky Sanctuary

The Oregon Outback, recently designated as the largest Dark Sky Sanctuary in the world, comprises 2.5 million acres of stunning open spaces and clear night skies. Visitors can marvel at the breathtaking expanse of stars and constellations, undisturbed by light pollution. Prineville, situated just over a couple hours north of the Oregon Outback International Dark Sky Sanctuary, welcomes the growing number of visitors seeking dark sky and astro-tourism experiences. We proudly endorse the work Oregon continues to do to move the needle forward on mitigating light pollution and promoting overall responsible recreation. There is no better time than now to visit these timeless, awe-inspiring dark sky places, and we can’t wait to see you!

Photo courtesy of Joey Hamilton

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