Popular for its extremely remote location (roughly 2 hours southeast of Bend), shoreline campsites, trout fishing, and high desert landscape, East Bay Campground makes for an ideal summer escape. Despite its remote location, with only 15 campsites the campground can often be full during summer weekends. Thompson Reservoir Campground is located on the northwestern shore of the reservoir and makes for a good camping alternate should all the sites be taken.
Thompson Reservoir is stocked annually with trout and small mouth bass, with some trout ranging from 12 to 18 inches. According to Oregon Outback, the creation of Erika Lasater and Paul Denny, anglers will find the best luck fishing with fenders and worms, frisky fly, or brown rooster tail.
For hikers, the arduous day trip up adjacent Hager Mountain is a must, and certainly one of Southeastern Oregon's best hikes. From East Bay Campground, head roughly 4.3 miles back north on NF-28, and a small parking area will be on your right. It's a 4-mile one-way slog up the volcanic butte with a total of nearly 2,000 feet of elevation gain. At the 7,195-foot summit you'll be welcomed by 360-views as far south as Mount Shasta. Hager Mountain Lookout can be rented annually from November 15 through May 15.
Note: East Bay Campground is open year round and is operated on a first-come, first-served basis. Motorboats are permitted on the Thompson Reservoir.
One of the Oregon's true Wild West experiences, the Silver Lake Cowboy Dinner Tree serves up some of the best and biggest steaks (30 ounces!) in the state, has some of the friendliest hosts, and is a must-stop for any visitor in the Fort Rock/Silver Lake area. While dining next to a wood-fired stove in the festooned cabin you'll have two choices for dinner, a 26- to 30-ounce top sirloin steak or a whole roasted chicken. Seriously, come prepared with an appetite as their pre-set meals aren't for lightweights.
From June 1 through October 31 the Silver Lake Cowboy Dinner Tree is open Thursday through Sunday from 4 p.m. to 8:30 p.m.; from November through May it is open from Friday through Sunday from 4 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Reservations are required and only cash is accepted. Call 541.576.2426 for reservations and pricing. It is located 5.1 miles south of Silver Lake on E Bay Road/NF-28, roughly a 45-minute drive from Fort Rock.