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Johnny McVenture, EASTERN OREGON: 

Grab a pint at Terminal Gravity Brewing Enjoy handcrafted brews from the cabana-turned-brewery public house in the tiny town of Enterprise. The pub, which lies adjacent to the brewery grounds, has been offering up brews since 1996. Try the IPA— a copper-colored ale with hints of grapefruit and caramel, or the winter seasonal Festivale, which has doses of caramel, toffee and brown sugar tones.

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Ski gnarly powder Nestled in the Blue Mountains, Anthony Lakes ski area offers some of the best "champagne powder" in the nation. Boasting the highest base elevation in Oregon at 7,100 feet, Anthony Lakes is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year. A good day to go is half-price Thursdays. Only $17.50 for this weekly special, which is quite a steal, but a new promotion lets you actually "own" the mountain for a day. This deal lets groups have full control of the rock garden chair lift for an entire day. After mountain fun, you can rent the 16-foot yurt a quarter-mile from the lodge for $200 a night.

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Get personal with Elk Less than 35 minutes away from Anthony Lakes, you can get an up-close view of over 100 Rocky Mountain elk at the Elkhorn Wildlife Area. Two Percheron draft horses named Waylan and Jed will haul you around during the only horse-drawn wagon expedition in the state.

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Enjoy the winter landscape Take some time to embrace the spirit of the wilderness at the Steens Mountain Wilderness resort. Cross-country ski or snowshoe toward Wild Horse Lake while looking at the glacial gorges that shape the mountain. If you're lucky, you'll get a glimpse of the picturesque Kiger mustangs.

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