There are officially seven off-leash dog hikes in Bend. I’m feeling very ambitious (read: mildly depressed, angry, and heartbroken and in need of a tangible goal) and plan to hit one “park” every morning until we’ve explored them all…

Today Betty and I went to Overturf Reservoir.

Overturf Reservoir

475 NW 17th Avenue

Still pretty close to our hood, but far enough that I drove. The official entrance is on 17th Street, just off Galveston Ave./Skyliners Rd. Enter through this cute neighborhood park:

 …and you head UP:


It’s a pretty hilly park. When you get to the off-leash area, it’s fairly obvious, since the whole thing is fenced in. 

Still, not the kind of dog parks in SoCal where you can see the entire thing from the entrance. Nope.  It’s basically a series of natural trails on a hill that has a gigantic fence around it. Super fun. I found a couple of other entrances in case you don’t want to do the vertical-ish climb from 17th.

Jack Lake Court ends at a roundabout and from the roundabout entrance, if you look off to the right, you’ll see a gate into the park. You can also turn onto Flagline Dr. from Skyliners Road and you’ll see a trail marker on the right. Park there and have at it.


Anyhoo, I couldn’t run the whole thing without risking cardiac arrest since it’s not the flattest of loops. I plead elevation, general laziness, and cold f-ing feet — need to buy winter trail runners (i.e., less ventilated, more waterproof. Sheesh).

But I’m looking forward to coming back here when I have a few more weeks under my belt.

Unlike Awbrey Reservoir, you have total free reign within the park, so if you want to go “off-trail” sans leash, it’s cool. It was fun to let Betty lead the way and go wherever she felt like exploring.

I’m sure it makes me a terrible pack leader, but I love it when she boldly charges into the unknown. She’s come a long way from the neurotic dumpster puppy I met 3 months ago.

The entire loop took us about 20 minutes. I knew we were headed to the river so I didn’t do a second lap.

On the way back I stopped at Mother’s Juice Cafe for a breakfast sandwich.  Meh. To be fair, their specialty seems to be smoothies and salads. Not totally fair to rate them based on the breakfast sandwich (It was pretty good, btw, but the eggs were that McDonalds-Esque dry, microwaved disc shape). Stick to the juicy raw stuff here I think.

Then went to REI and then FootZone in search of fleece and winter trail runners. Got an XS Arcteryx fleece for 1/2 price on the REI clearance rack – woohoo! Couldn’t find winter trail runners that fit my narrow feet.

Boo. Oh, and REI doesn’t allow dogs. Double BOOOO! Though one of the guys in the shoe department at REI was super helpful and told me which brands to look for online that run a little narrower.

The peeps at FootZone were awesome too. I found a Brooks trail runner that was pretty close, but we had to put a liner in to make it fit my feet. And then there was the sweating issue. Gore-tex shoes are really only for super cold, very moist situations. You cannot wear these bitches around town unless you’re in a storm, hurricane, or flood.

I got overwhelmed and decided to wait and see if I can tough out the cold-feet situation for a few more weeks.

Then Betty and I romped around Drake Park for half an hour, called it a pretty awesome morning, and went home to work (me) and nap (Betty).

Tomorrow, we’ll play it by ear.

Oh, and total non-seqitor, but a few leaves are starting to change here. I’m kind of excited for the fall. This bush is around the corner from the apple tree house (Dad and Janie are modeling) and I didn’t doctor the color.

Magenta. Magenta leaves. I’m pretty sure I had a cable-knit sweater vest in that color in the ’80s. Crazy pretty.

Bend is pretty great. Just give me a minute to send an angry email to the ex and then I’ll totally appreciate the moment. I swear. 

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