McKenzie Hwy + ADD NEW ROUTE
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Start at junction on Oregon State Highways 126 and 242 just West of Belknap Springs, Oregon. Follow Hwy 242 East stay on 242 until Sisters, Oregon
Dense evergreen forests open up into mountain pass surrounded by volcanoes. Maybe the only place in the US outside of Hawaii you drive through a lava flow field. Incredible black lava flow fields with high alpine pine trees fighting to survive in sanitized landscape. On the pass you are surrounded by volcanic cinder cones and mountains some covered year round with snow.
Highway speed limit is very slow 35mph to 45 mph in most places, with gravel sliding off hillsides onto inside corner on the assent. However the views are well worth the extra time, you don't want to go much faster anyway because the scenery is so stunning. Pavement surface is excellent because there is so little traffic and the road is open half the year or less.
At the top of the pass there is a observation point build out of lava/basalt rock. All the surrounding peaks are identified by peering through holes in the walls of the observation building. There are outhouses at this stop and trail heads for hiking paths through the lava fields. No gas/food or amenities the entire route. Gas up somewhere along hwy 126 or if your leaving from Sisters gas up there.
Road only open seasonally.
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