Run Oregon loves running – that’s no surprise. In our Run Oregon Road Trip series, we aim to showcase some great locations to make your running basecamp on your next vacation of staycation. We recently spent a few days in Central Oregon at the Campfire Hotel.
First the Running:
Honestly, the Campfire Hotel is perfectly centralized in the heart of Bend running options. It’s about a mile to downtown Drake Park and an extra .7 to meet up with the Deschutes River Trail near the Old Mill District. This opens your miles up almost as long as you wanna go. It’s also about a mile to hit the “other” side of the Deschutes River Trail. Here is a link to a Strava run that we did during one of our last trips over.
We wanted to highlight a couple new places to run that we haven’t featured before. Obviously, everyone knows about Pilot Butte, but this is a golden spot to actually commit to some hill work. The entrance to Pilot Butte is less than a mile – a perfect warm up timeframe with another mile or so up to the top. There is a trail version as well that will add a little more distance and terrain too.
If you are trying to avoid hills altogether (guilty), we came across this great 5 mile-ish on the Larkspur Trail to Larkspur Park. It runs through the heart of east Bend and connects the Central Oregon Historic Canal Trail to Pilot Butte State Park.
The list of Central Oregon races is too numerous, so I’ll just leave you with a link to our Race Calendar – which is still being added to for 2023.
The Campfire Hotel is another one of those hotels with a focus on renovation. This spot clearly used to be some sort of old motel that has been refurbished and updated into something super special. If there was ever a spot that screamed “running basecamp”, the Campfire is it. There are 100 rooms available between multiple buildings that provide some modernity with a vintage camp-inspired theme.
It really is an outdoors-persons dream and it’s clear that they are serious about it. If more beyond running is in your plans, they have plenty of space to store your outdoor gear. If you don’t feel like bringing your bike, there are free bikes & helmets available in the lobby to explore.
And there is a firepit in the parking lot! And by “firepit”, I don’t mean a tiny little camp stove. I mean a huge 10-foot campfire pit that just screams to be sat around, beers in hand, roasting some marshmallows, and connecting with others.
Check out their calendar for on-site fun.
We stayed in the Happy Camper Suite – one of a half dozen room size options. This option is perfect for a family or a running group, complete with room for 6 (King Bed in one room; 2 Twins in the other).
We were surprised with how spacious the suite was and my wife immediately said, “we are coming back here” upon entering. As someone with three kids knows, having literal space in a hotel room is a luxury. We loved that they had their own sleeping quarters, we had ours, and that there was still a main living area. It’s the little things.
This is also great for running groups. You could sleep (actually comfortably) a half dozen runners with minimal issue here.
The beds were surprisingly comfortable as well. I say “surprisingly” because they are super firm. When I first plopped down on it, I was a wee concerned it was going to present a sleeping problem. I like a firm bed, but this one is FIRM. We did note that these are more memory-foam based and that it does a really good job at supporting you while also letting your body sink in over time. Whether it was the fact that our room had no windows, or the bed itself, but we had really great nights of sleep while we were there. Don’t judge a bed’s book by its covers (pun sorta intended).
The room also has basic amenities like a wet bar with small fridge and microwave and minifridge, coffee from local roasting favorite Backporch and a full living area with seating, table, and TV.
While we love running and exploring when we travel, it’s always nice to have options at a basecamp for refueling and relaxing. The Canteen is their on-site drinking hole and is the creation of the owners of Bend’s Dogwood Cocktail Cabin (if you know, you know).
There’s a ton of great libations and a handful of food options as well. Also available is the Barrio Food Truck which comes around Wednesday to Sunday for dinner from 4-10p.
If you are in a rush in the mornings to get out and about, there are grab and go food options to satisfy your need.
Beyond that, The Campfire also features a seasonal heated pool and a year round salt water pool and hot tub. It was awesome to come in December and be able to relax in warmth with the cool high desert mountain air around us.
We have ran and driven by the Campfire Hotel on numerous occasions over the years and we are glad we finally got to check it out in more detail. This will definitely be the top of our list when we return due its convenience, comfort, and amenities. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!
Road Trip Details:
721 NE 3rd Street Bend Oregon 97701
More about the Campfire Hotel:
Central Oregon is where the spirit of adventure thrives, and we want to put you right in the middle of it all. In Bend, you’ll get a backdrop of the Three Sisters mountains, gorgeous river treks, snowy ski slopes, and hiking trails that lead to some of the most stunning views in Oregon. Whatever you’re looking for, we’ll help you find your way.
Many thanks to the Campfire Hotel for allowing us to check out their property! Please read our transparency page for info on how we do our reviews.