Offering the longest ski season in North America, most years, Timberline’s ski season begins around early to mid-November and continues through Labor Day, with a short closure (snow permitting). Mt. Hood’s elevation tops out at 11,245 feet, making it the tallest mountain in Oregon.
Timberline Lodge is located near the base of Mt. Hood, 60 miles east of Portland International Airport. Depending on traffic, it takes about an hour by car to get to the resort. There is also the Timberline Resort Shuttle, which operates on weekends and holidays. It’s free for Timberline and Fusion season pass holders and Timberline lift ticket holders who bought their tickets online.
The Mt. Hood Express shuttle runs between City of Sandy to Timberline Lodge. There’s also a bunch of shuttle services. To check all of your transportation options, use the Get There trip planning tool, which is offered for free by the Oregon Department of Transportation.
The easiest places to eat are right in the resort, and you do have a number of options to satisfy every taste bud.
Timberline Lodge itself sits at 6,000 feet. The bottom of Still Creek Basin is 4,850 feet, and Silcox Hut is at 7,000 feet. The top of the Palmer Lift is 8,540 feet high. Eight lift service the different areas, including five high-speed quads, and there is one passenger snowcat.
There are 1,415 skiable acres and 3,690 feet of vertical drop. The area gets a whopping 540 inches of snow each year, ensuring fresh powder throughout the season. With a total of 41 runs, the area has a lot of terrain for every ski level. Breakouts are as follows: 25% beginner (9 greens), 50% intermediate (18 blues) and 25% advanced (13 blacks). The longest run is 3.12 miles.
Timber Lodge was a Works Progress Administration (WPA) project, which was a Franklin Roosevelt program to put Depression-era job seekers back to work. Completed in 1937, it attracts over 2 million skiers and boarders each year. If it’s an especially cold day, go through the Timberline snow tunnel – a bit of engineering genius – to the massive, two-story stone furnace.
As a ski-in, ski-out resort, it’s especially great for beginners since the snow is a bit more tame than other places. But there’s also a lot of advanced terrain, including the freestyle terrain park.
What sets this resort apart from the rest is that, because it’s higher, it gets more snow than most of the other ski resorts on Mount Hood. So, while the lower resorts might be getting only rain, Timber Lodge will be receiving a fresh dose of snow, equaling fresh powder throughout the season, including on its longest run (Palmer Glacier to Still Creek Basin).
This resort is perfect for visitors to the area as well as those who always want a dose of fresh powder. It has a dining room in the lodge, lounge, pool, ski shop, rental shop and gift shop. Newbies can take advantage of the snowboard and ski school. Group and private ski lessons available for all ability levels. There are also summer snow camps to get trained up before the seasons starts.