If you're like me, then you LOVE Oregon but you also don't like spending money.
Well, I cracked the code this weekend. My friends and I had the most BEAUTIFUL time at the Terwilliger Hot Springs and we did it all for under a $100 each. That's including:
A beautiful cabin in the woods (sleeps 10 people)
Food for the whole weekend
Full tank of gas
All day at the hot springs
Amazing bonding time with family/friends
The Terwilliger Hot Springs lie on the west side of the Cascades, nestled right next to the Mackenzie River. There are several ways to get there but we came from Portland, so we took the 126 all the way. We had to make sure we got a cabin close to the springs. Here are the deets.
WARNING: Little did we know the road was blocked by a huge rockslide so we had to spend an extra three hours to coming in from the south side.
STEP ONE: RECRUIT TEN FRIENDS
This is the key gang. By having this many people, not only will you have more fun but it's going to save you A LOT of money. That's what we want right? Send a group text, make a facebook post, get it done!
Throw down on gas: $15 each
STEP TWO: GET A CABIN!
We found the best deal at the Mackenzie River Mountain Resort. The trick is to NOT book it on Airbnb like we did. It cost an extra hundred bucks because of that. So check this out, $159 a night for two people + $15 a person for a cabin with 6-8 beds. That can easily sleep 10 people. Let's do the math: Ten people for two nights would be $558. That's $55.80 a person. Not bad.
Up to $70 a pop.
I know what you're thinking next because you're always thinking about it: food.
STEP THREE: EAT SMARTER, NOT HARDER.
If everyone puts in ten bucks that's more than enough to feed everyone all weekend. Make a huge stew, beans rich chicken and broccoli, eggs and potatoes. Don't over think it, the more vegetables the better.
Per person: $80
STEP FOUR: GET TO THE HOT SPRINGS:
Let the bathing begin! (ew lol). From the cabins, it is about a 15-minute beautiful drive past the reservoir. Easy parking and it's only $6 a person all day. There's only one problem, there was a huge rock slide on the road and it's totally closed.
That doesn't stop most people from the parking the cars and climbing over the rocks and hiking the rest of the way (one mile) to the springs. I do not encourage that and I heard people got tickets. Still, some crazy kids were totally doing that.
After $6x2 we are up to $92 a person for an amazing Oregon weekend. You can't beat that!
The only other way is to come south from the other side of the road, which takes about three hours. If you have the wherewithal to get there you will have an amazing time and meet some cool people like this guy we found.
More cool pictures
This was supposed to be a post about how the road is closed but I thought this would be more fun, and it's just a simple example of how affordable exploring our amazing state with your loved ones can be. So let this be a lesson, next time someone uses money as an excuse not to get out of the house, show them this article.