Special Places

Newberry National Volcanic Monument

Collage of Newberry CalderaAre you intrigued by the forces of nature? Newberry National Volcanic Monument will amaze you!

In November of 1990, Newberry National Volcanic Monument was created within the boundaries of Deschutes National Forest. Managed by the U.S. Forest Service, this monument provides a unique opportunity to view the Lava Lands of central Oregon.

Go to Newberry National Volcanic Monument


Hiker on Tam McArthur Rim. Click for wilderness information.Inspired by wild beauty? Our eight Wildernesses call your name.

Wildernesses are lands designated by Congress to be protected and preserved in their natural condition, without permanent improvements or habitation. Within the Deschutes and Ochoco National Forests visitors can discover eight unique Wildernesses to explore.

Go to Wildernesses.

Scenic Byways

Sparks Lake Early SnowfallWould you like to go for a gorgeous drive off the beaten path? There are three National Scenic Byways on the Deschutes National Forest. These Byways represent the diverse views and unique environments that attract so many visitors to central Oregon.

Go to Scenic Byways

Wild and Scenic Rivers

Are you invigorated by the sounds of wild water? Portions of eight rivers and streams in central Oregon are part of the National Wild and Scenic River System. All or major portions of most of these rivers are on the Deschutes and/or Ochoco National Forests.

Go to Wild and Scenic Rivers

Accessible Adventures

Accessible Adventures Learn about the many recreation sites in the Deschutes that are suitable for everyone. Go to our Accessible Adventures page.

Highlighted Areas

Lava Lands Visitor Center

Lava Lands Visitor Center is the interpretive hub of Newberry National Volcanic Monument. Friendly rangers will help orient you to the Monument using our 3D topographic map. Visit our state of the art interpretive exhibit on area geologic and cultural history, shop in the Discover Your Forest Bookstore, view a variety of films scheduled daily, walk the Trail of Molten Land and the Trail of the Whispering Pines, travel on the fully accessible 5.5 mile Sun-Lava paved path, picnic under the pines, attend a ranger talk, walk to the top of Lava Butte for a spectacular view of Central Oregon.

Lava Butte Interpretive Site During peak season from June 17 through Labor Day weekend, there is a shuttle that runs approximately every 20 minutes that departs from Lava Lands Visitor Center to access the summit of Lava Butte.

  • Visitors may access Lava Butte by non-motorized at any time generally from dawn to dusk.
  • The parking area for the visitor center is open year-round and access is dependent upon snow accumulations during winter months.

For information about accessible recreation opportunities in Pacific Northwest National Forests, visit R6 PNW Forest Service Accessible Adventures.

Recreation Fee Site: Parking at the Lava Lands Visitor Center requires a $5/vehicle payment or a valid recreation pass. Passes can be purchased from Forest Service offices or local vendors. See "Passes" below for more information.

Lava River Cave Interpretive Site

Lava River Cave, part of the Newberry National Volcanic Monument, offers self-guided exploration of a mile-long lava tube. The cave was one of the first lava tubes to be discovered in Oregon and is the longest one in the state. It takes approximately 1.5 hours to tour the entire cave (~2.2 miles roundtrip). Initial access descends 55 stairs to a combination of flat boardwalk, uneven surfaces and stairways. Entrance to Lava River Cave is not permitted outside of the operating season and hours in order to protect critical bat habitat.

  • In the interest of preventing the spread of White-nose syndrome to bats that reside in the Cave, we ask that you do not wear or bring into the cave any clothing or gear you have used in any other cave or mine.
  • Please wear close-toed shoes and warm clothing. Average temperature in the Cave is 42 degrees Farenheit.
  • We strongly encourage visitors to bring or rent two light sources. This is the safest way to experience and enjoy the cave.
  • No pets are allowed in Lava River Cave.

Learn about the geology and history of Lava River Cave!

Recreation Fee Site: Parking at this site requires a $5/vehicle payment or a valid recreation pass. Passes are available at this site, but can also be purchased from Forest Service offices or vendors. See "Passes" below for more information.

Metolius River

Metolius RiverThis roadside route begins where glass-clear water surges from the dry ground at Metolius Spring, and continues north to Bridge 99. Special places along the way include the Camp Sherman Fish Viewing Platform, Metolius Research Natural Area, and Wizard Falls Fish Hatchery (phone 541-595-6611). A coalition of government agencies, private utilities, and conservation organizations are working to restore anadromous Chinook salmon and sockeye salmon to the river.

Caution: Stay alert for pedestrians, equestrians, and automobiles that share the narrow single-lane road.

Cascade Lakes Welcome Station

Located just past mile post seven on the Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway, the Cascade Lakes Welcome Station serves as a gateway to some of the most popular trails, lakes and recreation areas on the Deschutes National Forest. The Welcome Station also offers parking and access to Phil’s and Wanoga mountain biking trails systems.

The Cascade Lakes Welcome Station provides visitors an opportunity to buy recreation passes, local maps, guidebooks and other educational materials. In addition to offering one-day recreation passes and the annual Northwest Forest Pass (good for all National Forests in Oregon and Washington), the Welcome Station also offers a number of interagency pass options.

Staffed with both Forest Service rangers and employees from Discover Your Forest, the Deschutes National Forest’s non-profit partner, the Welcome Station gives visitors the opportunity to ask questions, while learning about trail conditions and closures.

Visitors can plan their trips using a new, interactive touch screen map. They can learn more about our local wilderness areas and what they can do to help protect them while exploring the region on a giant floor map. Additional interpretive exhibits are planned and will be implemented in the coming seasons.



Recreation Areas