Origin Story: She Moves Mountains

Reaching New Heights  

Rock climbing is essential to our Central Oregon lifestyle, but in a male-dominated sport, a group of women, led by Lizzy VanPatten, have started a revolution to get more women climbing with She Moves Mountains

Every Sunday on Central Oregon Daily’s newest feature, Origin Story, Allison Roecker introduces us to a passionate person who is making their dreams come true.

Climber Dies After Fall at Smith Rock


Misery Ridge, a popular hiking trail at Smith Rock State Park, was closed for several hours on Tuesday morning after a hiker died in the area. 

A man, now identified as 20-year-old Central Oregon resident and climber Alex Reed, fell roughly 200 feet from the top of the Misery Ridge Trail and was dead when first responders arrived. The Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office said Reed feel while hiking but was carrying climbing gear.

A group of hikers said they heard Reed yell when he fell and found his body at the bottom of the ridge. Reed was hiking alone at the time of the fall and the Sheriff’s Department as deemed his fall accidental.

Twelve Deschutes County Search and Rescue volunteers assisted in removing the body due to the difficult terrain. Deputies were also assisted by the Smith Rock State Park Rangers and volunteers as well as the Redmond Fire Department.


Armed Man Reported at Smith Rock

Law Enforcement Responds to Reports of Armed Man Making Threats at State Park

Investigators are asking for any witnesses to a scary sequence of events at Smith Rock State Park on Saturday to contact authorities with any information.
A 911 call was made around 1:30pm on Saturday with the caller telling authorities that a man was throwing rocks off a ledge near the Misery Ridge hiking trail and yelling at other visitors.
When a second 911 caller said that other hikers had told the caller that the ma. Was armed with a .45 caliber handgun and was waving it around, more than a dozen (including 5 on-duty DCSO SWAT team members) law enforcement personnel from the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office, Redmond Police Department, Bend Police Department and the Oregon State Police responded to the park.
As deputies arrived on scene, they contacted state park personnel to advise them of the situation. They also contacted numerous hikers on the trail in an attempt to locate witnesses with first hand knowledge of the incident and get an updated location of the suspect. All hikers contacted were also asked to leave the immediate area.

At about 2:32 p.m., 54-year-old Redmond resident Daren Jaques was seen walking down the Misery Ridge trail and was detained by law enforcement personnel on scene.
It was determined Jaques wasn’t armed with a handgun as had been previously reported, but he was removed from the park.
This investigation is continuing and the Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office Oregon is asking for anyone with first hand knowledge of the incident to contact the Deschutes County 911 non-emergency number at 541-693-6911.

Neighbor Trying to Stop Approval of Bed and Breakfast Across from Smith Rock

Deschutes County Commissioners are considering the appeal of a permit that was granted to developers who want to build a bed and breakfast and campground across from Smith Rock State Park.

Central Oregon Daily’s Cydney McFarland was at the county building on Wednesday when both sides made their case to the commission. Commissioners did not make a decision on whether to uphold the appeal. Instead, they are allowing a week for new written testimony from those for and against the project. They will then allow two more weeks for arguments and rebuttals before making a decision in late March or early April.

Free Professional Photo of Your Pooch at Smith Rock on August 26th

Celebrate National Dog Day on Saturday, August 26th at Smith Rock State Park. Bring your four-legged friends to the Dogs of Smith Rock 2017 event for a hike and a free professional photo, courtesy of Gary Eidsmoe Photography. There will be water, dog treats and a raffle for dog gear, services and more, provided by Bend Pet Express, 10 Barrel Brewing, Doggieville Ranch and ParaPup Designs, with all proceeds going to Brightside Animal Center in Redmond.

Destination Oregon: Climbing at Smith Rock State Park

Smith Rock State Park in Terrebonne is full of trails for everyone from novice walkers to avid hikers, but the towers of rock can be intimidating for those who aren’t used to rock climbing.

For tonight’s Destination Oregon, sponsored by Robberson Ford, Mackenzie Wilson joins Chockstone Climbing Guides‘ Jim Ablao to show that you don’t have to be a pro to enjoy some of the best rock climbing areas in the country.

The Great Outdoors: Smith Rock Rising Visitors

The number of annual visitors to Smith Rock State Park has increased 35% percent since 2012.

For this week’s edition of The Great Outdoors, sponsored by Camp Abbot Trading Company, Brian Jennings takes us to Smith Rock for a look at how park rangers may be changing their strategies on how to deal with the crowds.