One of the many reasons to live in Portland is the easy to access mountain adventures. While some of us are motivated to get up at the crack of dawn and do day trips, many of us prefer the more relaxed option. A weekend getaway at Mt. Hood. Here’s how we do it.
Pick your Perfect Rental
We like to stay within walking distance of the shops and restaurants in Government Camp. This is especially nice if you have a big group so you don’t have to pile into multiple cars to grab a bite to eat. There are local outfits like All Seasons Vacation Rentals
, most of which also cross post on Airbnb and VRBO. If you want more resort-like amenities like a heated pool and hot tub, check out Collins Lake Resort
. Lodging at the historic Timberline Lodge
books up about 6 months in advance but if you’re lucky enough to snag a room you’ll have rock star access to trails and the beautiful dining room.
Get Your Gear
Whether you’re a seasoned shredder or a newbie, be sure to make a stop at Next Adventure
to stock up. This Portland fave has it all—used gear, new gear, and rentals. Especially if you’re trying something for the first time, be sure to check out their basement, bursting with quality used goods.
Stop and Smell the Donuts
Assuming you’re heading out on a Friday, try to leave early to avoid traffic. But even if you have to work, you can usually make it to Govy in under two hours. Don’t forget to stop at Joe’s Donuts
in Sandy and stock up for the morning. Yum!
Hit the Slopes
From Government Camp, you can easily head to either Meadows
. Most of the trails at Timberline are pretty mellow and you can treat yourself to lunch and a look around the gorgeous historic lodge. Be sure to order the hot chocolate. It will not disappoint! Meadows is bigger and has more terrain options. They also seem to have a better handle on crowds with a very organized parking and shuttle setup. Early birds get good parking. Latecomers get discounts. Both locations offer rentals and lessons. Book ahead to avoid lines.
Eat, Drink and Be Merry
We’ve already mentioned the Hot Chocolate at Timberline for a truly decadent Après Ski. But when you’re ready for a big meal and a beer, we recommend Ratskeller
. It has the welcoming feel of your favorite dive bar, complete with pinball games and big screens for the sports fans. It’s easy to imagine yourself as one of the regulars here, living the ski life, sidled up to the bar.
Act Like a Kid
Don’t let the fun end on Sunday. Stop to go tubing or sledding before you head out of town. You can pay to play at spots like SkiBowl
or Cooper Spur
. Or bring your own gear and stop at White River
for free fun. The hills here can quickly get overrun by families, but it’s also a beautiful spot to explore past the crowd on snowshoes or cross country skis. On clear days, you’re rewarded with the mountain as a gorgeous backdrop.
On our way back to town we always stop at Koya Kitchen
in Welches. The owner has some serious wanderlust and she’s created a place that reflects her eclectic taste. On a recent visit, she explained she was so broke when she first opened that she decorated with branches and river rocks she found in the area. Now the décor has a more sophisticated feel with air plants and lighting fixtures she makes herself out of smooth driftwood. The food is a mix of Japanese and Indian. In the winter we go for spicy curries or the super comforting fried rice. If you’re lucky enough to pass by in the summer, enjoy fresh sushi out on in the sprawling garden area.
Share your weekend adventures at Mt. Hood by following us on social and tagging your Instagram photos with @Prometheus_Apartments
. See you on the slopes!