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October is the Ideal Month for Experiencing Local Campgrounds and Spiced Flavors

Summer may be in the rearview mirror, but locals know that early Fall can be the most beautiful time of the year in Central Oregon. Crowds have receded, and while the sun sets earlier, there is still plenty of time to explore. In fact, camping during the shoulder season offers the same high desert landscape and those starry nights arrive well before midnight. With a little bit of planning, take advantage of this “essential” travel close to home. That includes preparations to eat well—a favorite activity no matter whether you prefer rustic backpacking or “glamping.”


Camp Sherman

+ Nine sites

+ Direct access to Metolius River. Spacious campsites. Open year round.

+ Reservations:

Tumalo State Park

+ 23 full-hookup sites, 54 tent sites, 7 yurts

+  Fall scenery along the river. Open year round.

+ Reservations:


6 cups old fashioned rolled oats

1/2 cup butter, melted and divided

1 cup slivered almonds

3/4 cup dried cranberries

3/4 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup honey

1/4 cup maple syrup

1/4 cup butter

2 tsp. vanilla extract

1 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 tsp. ground ginger

1 tsp. salt


1.) Heat oven to 350 degrees. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper and add oats and ¼ cup melted butter. Bake five minutes, stir and bake another three-five minutes or until lightly toasted. Reduce oven temperature to 300 degrees.

2.) Transfer to a large bowl, add almonds and cranberries then set aside.

3.) Combine ¼ cup butter, brown sugar, honey vanilla extract, spices and salt in a small saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring just until butter melts and the sugar completely dissolves. Pour mixture in to bowl with toasted oat mixture. Mix well.

4.) Transfer oat mixture to a prepared 9” x 9” pan then use a rubber spatula to firmly press the mixture into the pan to keep the bars together. Bake at 300 degrees for 30 minutes, cover and cool 10 minutes before cutting. Cool completely before eating or packing for camp.

Pumpkin Pie in a Pie Iron

2 packages crescent rolls (depending on size of pie iron and number of servings you desire)

¾ cup sugar

½ tsp. salt

½ tsp. ground ginger

¼ tsp. ground cloves

1 tsp. cinnamon

2 eggs

1 -15 oz. can pumpkin

1 -12 oz. can evaporated milk

Mini marshmallows


1.) Mix pumpkin with sugar, salt, ginger, cloves and cinnamon.

2.) Beat eggs slightly and add to pumpkin. Fold in evaporated milk.

3.) Grease one side of a pie iron, cover with dough. Fill with ½ cup of pumpkin and a handful of mini marshmallows. Cover the mixture with dough, and pinch sides shut.

4.) Grease the second half of the pie iron and connect the two halves. Put the pie iron in hot coals for four-six minutes, turning once.

TIP: Check your pie after four minutes and then frequently so it doesn’t burn