Between Colorado, Utah, and other major winter destinations like Stowe, it's easy to overlook the Pacific Northwest if you're on the hunt for great ski slopes and plenty of powder. But the Beaver State holds its own with an array of premier resorts scattered throughout the region, whether you're looking for beginner-friendly runs, backcountry challenges, or glamorous lodges and après activities.
From the stark, iconic Mt Hood to brilliant slopes of the Central Cascades, the chance to go skiing in Oregon is the chance to discover a whole new side to winter. In fact, this year Mother Nature has already blessed many of these mountains with an early blanket of snow before shoulder season even had a chance to wrap up, suggesting skiers can hit the slopes sooner rather than later. Break up your normal alpine routine and visit these 10 Oregon ski resorts.
Located almost squarely in the middle of the state, Mt Bachelor ski resort is Oregon’s title track when it comes to the best winter resorts the state has to offer. With over 4300 acres of terrain and the highest elevation available to skiers in the Oregon and Washington region (9065ft), Mt Bachelor is a destination unto itself near the already popular city of Bend. Skiers can hike to the top of the summit’s cinder cone for an exhilarating ride down the mountain, and finish the day with a local brew at one of Bend’s numerous homegrown brewpubs. Whether you’re a mogul rider, a powder nut, or a terrain park junkie, Mt Bachelor is a lock to become your next favorite Oregon skiing destination.
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Mt Hood Skibowl
Skiing in Oregon has never been easier than Mt Hood Skibowl. Just an hour from Portland, this one-of-a-kind resort allows you to experience the weird and wintery of the Pacific Northwest all in the same day. Skiing at Skibowl is made even easier by the fact that it’s open until 10pm or 11pm throughout the season, which means that workday skiing is a real thing on any of the park’s 34 fully lit runs. For those less inclined to hit the slopes on a pair of skis, Mt Hood Skibowl’s Winter Adventure Park offers a tubing hill, snowmobile course, and an array of activities for the entire family to enjoy.
Hoodoo Ski Area
Founded in 1938, Hoodoo Ski Area is an underrated, under-visited resort in Central Oregon, just 45 minutes west of Bend. The resort itself offers a peek at some of the Cascades finest slopes, and sits atop the Santiam Pass, a crucial break in the mountains that enabled wagon trains to move easily from the plains of Central Oregon into the Willamette Valley when Europeans first settled in Oregon. A bit smaller than its well-traveled cousins, Hoodoo is popular with families, albeit large in part for the Autobahn Tubing Park, one of the largest on the West Coast (and only $25 per day!). While marketing itself as a family-friendly winter destination, Hoodoo still boasts 800 acres of skiable terrain, a whopping 40% of which is classified at the expert level.
There’s nothing quite like getting an early start to ski season by hitting the slopes in August, and this is one of the few places in the United States where dreams of becoming a year-round ski bum can become reality. Timberline takes full advantage of Mt Hood’s year-round snowfields and perennial glaciers and keeps its doors open to skiers and snowboarders all year round. With over 1400 acres of skiable terrain and more vertical feet than any other resort in the state, skiing in Oregon has truly never been easier to access than at Timberline. And that's just the piste – Timberline Lodge is a grand example of United States "parkitecture" and was a filming location for Stanley Kubrick's film adaptation of Stephen King's The Shining. You can expect more cute than creep here, though, especially if you meet Heidi and Bruno, Timberline's resident St. Bernards.
Mt Ashland Ski Area
There's no need to stick to Sisters or northern Oregon to find top-quality runs. Set in a town known for its 100-mile trail runs and its wildly popular Shakespeare Festival, Mt Ashland Ski Area is another small but mighty destination for skiing in Oregon. With 23 runs across 220 acres, you can get your ski fix without having to traverse a massive peak. With an almost even split between beginner and advanced terrain, there’s no reason not to bring the whole family along, regardless of their experience level. Between the avid outdoor culture in Ashland and the quality powder on its peaks, this ski area is a must for visitors to Southern Oregon.
Willamette Pass Ski Area
Willamette (that’s Will-Am-It) Pass first opened its doors in 1941 with a handful of rope tows and a gathering of passionate skiers and snowboarders. The resort has since grown to include 29 marked trails, a 12.4-mile Nordic trail network, and, thankfully, a set of lifts and a magic carpet to escort eager skiers up the mountain. The nearest town is Crescent, Oregon – an unincorporated municipality that prides itself on proximity to outdoor wonders like the Pacific Crest Trail, Umpqua Hot Springs and Crater Lake National Park. Each year a handful of delighted visitors stumble upon the beloved Willamette Pass Ski Area on their way south from Bend, always with a pair of skis in tow! If you like to feel like a local more than a tourist when you travel, you'll find just the right vibe at Willamette Pass.
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Cooper Spur Ski Area
The 50 acres of greens and blues that mark the Cooper Spur Ski Area make it the friendliest of all of Oregon skiing destinations to families and beginners to the sport. Complete with a rental shop, a ski school, and a beginner rope tow on low-impact terrain, Cooper Spur offers the premium Mt Hood experience to even the freshest of winter converts. Kick back at the lodge, enjoy a brew on the covered patio (Global Beer Tour, anyone?), or even try your hand at cross-country skiing on the resorts small network of Nordic trails. Due south of Hood River, Oregon, and the Columbia River Gorge, too, there's no shortage of activities to enjoy a little further afield, too.
Mt Hood Meadows
Meadows is the local slang for Mt Hood’s largest ski resort and perhaps the most famous spot for skiing in Oregon. This iconic winter playground sits just a 90-minute drive from Oregon, and features varied terrain suitable for all skill levels and rider types. Although fairly condensed compared to some of its counterparts, this resort boasts over 2,000 acres of pristine runs, including one that spans across nearly 4500ft in elevation. Mt Hood Meadows also offers night skiing on select nights of the week with access to 140 acres of fully-lit terrain.
Warner Canyon Ski Area
The Warner Mountains make up the South-Central portion of Oregon state, and Warner Canyon Ski Area is perfectly positioned to offer some of the best front- and backcountry skiing available in the region. A short 17-minute drive from the town of Lakeview, this two-hill resort offers 21 marked runs, including 11 for experienced skiers and 10 for beginners and intermediates. A rustic day lodge provides a cozy escape for skiers needing a break from the chilly weather, and a well-mapped network of backcountry trails awaits the bold and experienced winter backcountry adventurer. For its size, Warner Canyon offers a comprehensive winter experience unlike any other.
Spout Springs Ski Area
One of the few family-owned and operated ski areas left in the country, Spout Springs is a classic Oregon ski resort set in the Blue Mountains, a beautiful but off-the-beaten-path range in Eastern Oregon. With just two fixed-grip chairlifts servicing 11 downhill trails and 21 Nordic trails, Spout Springs admirably offers a way to go skiing in Oregon without breaking the bank. Contrary to many larger resorts, Spout Springs keeps it old school and relies only on natural snowpack and the winter weather patterns in Northwestern Oregon to dictate its season, meaning availability and open days are subject to change. That said, if you’re willing to make the trek (a 4-hour drive from Portland), you're likely to have a classic ski experience without the crowds.