Mt Hood Ski Areas

Mt Hood Ski Areas

Aspen Ski Tours
Mt Hood in the Cascade Range is Oregon’s highest mountain and it’s rather striking considering it mega prominence. Mt Hood skiing is possible at 5 ski resorts that mostly sit on its flanks, although the lifted elevation of the Mt Hood ski areas is well shy of the summit at 11,245 feet. The Mount Hood ski resorts are about 50 miles southeast of Portland, and most of the patronage of the ski areas is from this nearby city, so not surprisingly the ski areas can get very busy on the weekends.

Mt Hood Ski Resorts

The Mount Hood skiing varies across the ski areas, from the large well developed Mt Hood Meadows Ski Resort to the tiny little Summit Ski Area that only has one lift.

Mt Hood Ski Areas: Snow, Vertical & Season

 
Season
(inches) 
 Base
(ft)
 Top
Elevation
(ft)
 Vertical
(ft)
 Season
Start
Season
End 
 Mt Hood Meadows  430  4,523  7,300  2,777  Late Nov  Mid May
 Mt Hood Skibowl  300 3,600   5,100  1,500  *  Mid Apr
 Timberline  540  4,850  8,540  3,690  All year  All year
 Cooper Spur  *  4,100  4,350  250  Late Dec  Late Mar
 Summit  *  3,990  4,304  315  Early Dec  Early Apr

Size of Mt Hood Ski Resorts
  Acres Trails  Lifts   Longest
Run (miles)
 Mt Hood Meadows 2,150  87  13 
 Mt Hood Skibowl 960  65   9
 Timberline  1,415  41 3.1 
 Cooper Spur 50  10   2
 Summit  * 0.6 

Mt Hood Meadows

For many visitors to the area, Mt Hood Meadows is synonymous with Mt Hood skiing. Mt Hood Meadows is one of the largest Oregon ski resorts with 2,150 acres, 13 chair lifts (6 high speed quads) and 87 slopes across 2,777 ft of lifted vertical, plus 1,770 vertical feet of hike-to terrain.

Meadows is best known for its intermediate cruisers and its gated expert terrain. Situated on the southeast side of Mt Hood, it’s possibly a little more protected from the elements compared with some of the other Mt Hood ski resorts further west. There’s no on-mountain lodging at the ski area, although the day lodges have lots of bells and whistles for day trippers.

Mt Hood Skibowl

Skibowl is the second largest of the Mt Hood ski areas, with 65 slopes and 9 lifts, and the night skiing area is significant. The chair lifts are pretty dinky, and it’s renowned for being steep and cheap. Unlike neighbouring ski areas, many of the slopes are north facing so snow quality is more favourable.

The two base areas of Skibowl (east and west) are located at either end of the little village of Government Camp, although it’s on the opposite side of the highway so none of the lodging is slope-side.

Timberline Ski Area & Lodge

The mid-mountain ski-in ski-out Timberline Lodge is possibly more famous than the actual ski area, in part because it’s known as the Overlook Hotel in The Shining movie, although the ski area is also well recognised because it’s open 12 months of the year (pending snow).

Timberline Ski Area has multiple terrain parks and a half pipe. The slopes are more mellow than those of Meadows and Skibowl, in part because this part of the mountain has an old lava flow, and the upper part of the ski area is open and above the timberline. The ski area has an impressive vertical of 3,690 ft, although during winter the top chair is closed because it’s covered in snow and the upper zone is only accessed via snowcat (weather permitting). As to be expected during spring and summer, the top area and terrain parks become the focus.


Trail Statistics Mt Hood

  Beginner
 Intermediate
%
 Advanced
%
 Expert
%
 Mt Hood Meadows 15 50 20 15
 Mt Hood Skibowl 20  40 40 n/a 
 Timberline 25 50  25  n/a
 Cooper Spur 40 60 
 Summit 50 50   0

Cooper Spur

This little family oriented ski area is located on the quiet northeast side of Mt Hood where it doesn’t receive as much snow as the other Mt Hood ski areas, and the elevation is relatively low. Cooper Spur Ski Resort has beginner and intermediate terrain (and tubing), and it’s only open on weekends and holidays. Cooper Spur Mountain Resort lodging is located 1.6 miles down the road from the ski area, which includes hotel style rooms (The Inn at Cooper Spur), condos and log cabins. Onsite is a gorgeous tavern serving homely meals.

Summit Ski Area

Summit is not aptly named considering its elevation and that it’s just a small bunny hill with 1 slow lift. The Summit Ski Area is located in Government Camp, about 1.5 miles from Mt Hood Skibowl. The little Snow Bunny snow play area is just down the road from Summit.
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