What makes the Mt. Hood area so special

What makes the Mt. Hood area so special

On sunny Pacific Northwest days, the people around the Portland, Oregon area often drive to key vantage points to take pictures and marvel at the awe that is Mt. Hood. Checking in at 11,240 feet, this dormant volcano is the highest mountain in Oregon, with a base spreading over 92 miles. Just 22 miles south of the Columbia River and an hour and a half drive from Portland, Mount Hood is a popular year-round destination with hikers, bikers, skiers and outdoor enthusiasts. Mt. Hood is the second most climbed mountain in the world after Japan’s Mt. Fujiyama.

These are just a few of the reasons this area is popular but what really makes the Mt. Hood area so special? There are lots of reasons, but beauty and fun are never far away.

Natural Beauty
The Mt Hood National Forest covers 1.2 million acres of land and offers four designated wilderness areas. Considered one of the nation’s largest producers of Christmas trees, the region boasts a variety of Agri-tourism opportunities like U-pick flowers, fruit and vegetable farms, local honey, and harvest festivals. Berry picking and mushroom foraging are popular with the locals.

Winter Recreation
With an average snowfall of 500-600’ per year, the Mt Hood area is home to five ski resorts including the famous Timberline Lodge and Mount Hood Meadows. Timberline has the only year round skiing available in North America.  Skiers and snow boarders come from all over the world to train on Timberline's slopes. Mt Hood Skibowl offers the largest night skiing area in North America and is popular with Portlanders looking to fit in a couple hours of skiing after work. Season passes are available at all four resorts and forest service passes are required to park at the ski resorts which can be purchased along with lift tickets.

For those looking for a less adrenaline-fueled skiing experience, Mt Hood offers plenty of cross country skiing options. There’s the popular Teacup Lake and the Nordic Center at Mount Hood Meadows. Along with cross country skiing, there are plenty of snowshoeing opportunities around Mt. Hood including the scenic Barlow Pass and Crosstown Trail. Given the immense size of the Mt. Hood area, however, there are limitless venues to snowshoe!

Summer Recreation
For those who prefer to travel to Mount Hood in the summer, there are plenty of hiking trails, lakes, rivers, and awe-inspiring waterfalls to keep the active outdoors person busy. Hundreds of campsites, ranging from the basic to more upscale, are available for weekends and holidays and tend to fill up quickly. Fly fishermen and kayakers seek out the beautiful Sandy and Clackamas Rivers and mountain bikers take advantage of the many challenging trails.

Hikers have access to more than 1,200 miles of hiking trails with opportunities for day trips and longer hikes. Even though this is a friendly wilderness area, local officials prefer hikers and backpackers purchase a GPS unit in case they get lost.

In addition to scenic trails and lakes, golfers can take in enjoy one of the many golf courses in the area. The Courses, a 27 hole golf course at Resort at the Mountain Resort, including the Foxglove Nine, a rugged terrain with boulders, dog legs and water hazards.  The Eagle Creek Golf Course sits in a pristine area with unspoiled forests nearby and century-old wagon ruts surrounding the course.

Mt Hood Dining
After a hard day on the slopes or trails, there are many opportunities to stop for locally sourced food and beer on the way home. Timberline Lodge’s Cascade Dining Room offers amazing fare and has been named one of the top ten mountaintop dining venues in the western United States and Canada by Sunset Magazine. The diner at The Huckleberry Inn at Government Camp is open 24 hours a day and serves up family style meals and big breakfasts. For a fine dining experience, a reservation at the Rendezvous Grill is in order. Popular amongst locals and Portlanders looking for an excellent dining experience, this restaurant serves up meals based on locally grown ingredients (as seasonally available). Many choose to sip a couple pints of local beer while enjoying good pizza or seafood at the Ice AxeGrill.

Mount Hood Living
As a popular tourist destination, there are plenty of vacation homes, ski chalets and cabins to rent near the slopes or on the rivers and golf courses in the surrounding communities. Year-round residents enjoy close access to Portland and its surrounding communities. The Resort at the Mountain in Welches, Oregon is nestled right in the mountains with a golf course and hiking and skiing opportunities nearby.

These are just a few of the reasons that make the Mt Hood area so special for residents and visitors alike.

Contact Information

Photo of Liz Warren Real Estate
Liz Warren
Merit Properties Group - Keller Williams Realty PDX Central
Box 131
Welches OR 97067
Direct: 503-705-3090