Believe It: They’re Skiing All Summer At Timberline
With a couple of months of off-season already in the books, there are those among us who just can’t get rid of the downhill itch. The solution is Timberline.
Tucked onto the south slope of 11,245-foot Mt. Hood in Oregon, Timberline Lodge and Ski Area is America’s only ski and snowboard resort that keeps its lifts open all summer. This year, resort management says the upper portions of the mountain – with some 2,400 vertical feet – will be open until Sept. 3. Summer hours are 7 a.m. to 2 p.m., and an all-day lift ticket costs $58.
Central to Timberline in the summer is the Palmer snowfield and Magic Mile alpine terrain located above treeline at the resort, where occasional snowfall, overnight freezing temperatures and judicious salting produce good conditions throughout the summer. Last winter, Timberline got 577 inches of snowfall and recently reported a 122-inch base.
Because of limited space and high demand during the summer, the snowfield is divided into “lanes.” Regular summer racing camps reserve the bulk of the lanes, but management always keeps at least one lane open for the public all summer. With good weather conditions, both the Magic Mile and Palmer high-speed quads run during the summer months, with the most amount of area open for public skiing and riding off the Magic Mile lift.
Timberline runs competition camps for everyone from beginners to high-level racers. Included are freestyle, family race, masters and performance camps, offered mainly during June and July. Participants can get more information and registration forms online.
It’s a 60-mile drive from Portland to Timberline, so a night’s stay may be in order. The 70-room Timberline Lodge sits right at the mid-mountain base of the resort, with everything from bunk-style to fireplace rooms. The lodge runs specials all summer, including a “random” $75 a night room to commemorate the resort’s 75th year in operation. Dining options go from the high-end Cascade Dining Room to pub-style Blue Ox Bar.
Photo: Courtesy Timberline