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FS begins snowshoe, ski/snowboard tours

BEND, Ore. - Beginning the weekend before Christmas, the Deschutes National Forest, Mt. Bachelor Ski Area, and Deschutes Forest Conservation Association will begin offering free snowshoe tours and ski/snowboard tours at Mt. Bachelor.

 In addition to the tours, roving rangers will add to visitors' enjoyment of the area.

As snow conditions allow on all weekends and holidays, FREE snowshoe tours will be offered from Saturday, Dec. 22, 2012 to Sunday, March 31, 2013.  New Ski/Snowboard tours are also being offered; however, the Ski/Snowboard tours will require a lift ticket and equipment.    With the exception of the snowshoe group tours, no reservations are required.

Snowshoe Tours:  Learn or practice snowshoe skills while experiencing the High Cascades' ecology, geology, and wildlife. Two tours will be offered daily at 10:00 am and 1:30 pm on weekends and during school breaks, except on Christmas and New Year's Day.  Tours will start at the Forest Service snowshoe hut in Mt. Bachelor's West Village.   Snowshoes are provided and prior experience is not necessary.  Participants must be at least 10 years old, wear warm boots and dress for the weather.  Tours last approximately 90 minutes. 

Ski/Snowboard Tours: While enjoying groomed runs on Mt. Bachelor learn more about the Cascades.  Tours will be offered on weekends at 2 p.m. starting at the top of Pine Marten lift.  Tours will require a lift ticket and ski/snowboard equipment and last one hour.  Basic skills and control are required. 

Roving Rangers:  Be on the lookout for Forest Service Interpretive Rangers roving between the Outback and Sunrise Express areas as well as the lodges.  They will answer questions and give impromptu talks.

Group Tours:  Group tours are available during the week free of charge and can be arranged for schools, youth and other organized groups. Reservations are required.

Contact:  Call the Snowshoe/Ski with a Naturalist Hotline (541) 383-4055 for up-to-date tour information.  Contact Education Program Coordinator Karen Gentry at (541) 383-4771 or  for more detailed information or to schedule a group tour.

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