Mt Hood Oregon: [End of] Summer Skiing. No hiking required!
One of my favorite ways to find new adventures is simply to say, “yes!”. In this case, a friend from SLC needed to check off August and September for months 133 and 134 of #turnsallyear. For those who don’t know, that means she has boarded each and every month for over 11 years! Meanwhile, I didn’t even make it up skiing last season… but that didn’t stop me from making the drive down to Mt. Hood from Seattle to meet her.
I had several questions about summer skiing that may be helpful to others:
How is there still snow to ski on in Oregon (with a lift)? Palmer Glacier! The top portion of the lift is actually covered in snow during the winter, melting enough to ride up and come down on the glacier to the right of the lift. It’s basically one giant, easy black run where you can do down the left, right or middle. There’s also a pretty decent size park at the bottom, but being the older, injured person I am, I was a spectator for this portion.
How is the snow? Surprisingly, pretty damn good. They regularly salt the glacier and groom it every morning. This makes for easy turns until later in the day when it gets bogged down by the heat. Some of the smaller paths off the main run may also give you a good leg workout while attempting to turn.
What do I wear? No all-encompassing answer, watch the forecast and plan for everything. It was close to 90 in Portland and ended up being mid-70s at the top. I went for yoga pants and a tank top and it felt great! I even got too hot on the chair. That said, I had all the extra layers packed as I’m told people are more often cold than hot (especially if you take a spill or two and are wet). If it’s a clear-ish day, sunscreen is a MUST, that reflection off the snow will get ya.
Tutus are welcomed and cheered! People are super friendly during summer skiing. Most are on a similar quest to my friend, especially on this weekend at this mountain. Wearing tutus was one of my favorite parts as it started lots of conversations and photo opps. I’m sure we’re in a lot of insta stories that I never saw.
Where should I stay? I recommend Government Camp. It’s just down from the summit with cheap accommodations. There are also several restaurants and local bars to choose from. You can also stay at Timberline Lodge, which is fun as well, but you’ll get more of local adventurers in Government Camp. Car camping in the parking lot is another (free) option.
No matter the place or the season, adventure is there if you seek it out!
Do you have any questions about summer skiing Mt Hood? Put your comments below!
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Because Adventure Travel Feeds the Soul,
Mel M and the #Hashtag59 Team