There’s a local saying: all roads lead to Sisters.
Sisters is either the last stop or the first stop before going over the McKenzie Pass–Santiam Pass Scenic Byway, an 82-mile drive into the Willamette Valley. Located at the base of the Cascade Range, the town’s namesake comes from the Three Sisters volcanic peaks that frame the town. Seven mountain peaks and one butte surround the town, giving ample jaw-dropping panoramic views. For those who love mountain sports and four seasons, who love solitude and dense ponderosa forests, Sisters does not disappoint.
People from various walks of life take the plunge and move from California, Colorado, Idaho, Washington and even Ohio to reset in small town Sisters, because of its blue-ribbon schools, its proximity to the Cascade Range and the immense amount of recreational opportunities in skiing, mountain biking, paddle sports, climbing, fly-fishing, golfing, camping and hiking. The majority of four-wheel vehicles in town wear a crash pad, roof rack or bike rack (and in many cases, all of the above).
The Census does not indicate the number of residents from Northern California, Washington and greater Portland who live part of the year in Sisters. Just as there are seasonal jobs—fire crews and ski crews—so too are there second-home residents. Many live tucked away in the outskirts in the thick forest, some in neighborhoods, ranches and acreages in Deschutes County.
Telecommuters, retired professionals, artists, small business owners, tourism professionals, entrepreneurs, teachers, wildlife biologists, forestry professionals and wildland fire personnel populate the city. They come with intention of slowing down and waking up with crisp fragrant mountain air and ready to explore the nearby Peterson Ridge Trail, Three Creeks Wilderness, Deschutes National Forest or the Metolius River.
Sisters Folk Festival, Sisters Rodeo, Sisters Stampede and Sisters Quilt Show are seasonal and driving events that bring artists and visitors from around the world to the Central Oregon town. Sisters is the space where people understand simple living is quality living.
Median Home Price: $367,450
Median Income: $40,952
Fun fact: Sisters has a dark sky ordinance to protect the amazing star-filled nights.
Local knowledge: Brett Hersom, 40, interventional procedural consultant (health care industry)
Favorite activities: Backcountry skiing on Tam McArthur Ridge, riding singletrack on the Peterson Ridge Trail, fly-fishing the Metolius river, riding the scooter around with my daughter
“My wife and I both travel weekly for work. My aim was to land, reset and spend time in solitude. I feel that we’ve gained quality versus quantity in all that we are involved in—friends, community and recreation.”