Best skiing and snowboarding spots near UP

By Molly Bancroft | December 12, 2023 12:00pm

Chairlift operating at skibowl mount hood.

Media Credit: Gavin Britton / The Beacon

The winter season is almost upon us, and in some areas around Portland, snow has already begun to fall at a steady rate. For those thrill seekers who are interested in skiing or snowboarding, it can be difficult to find places around Portland that are within driving distance that provide ideal slopes. 

Well, those interested are in luck. Below are some of the best places near campus for one to get their fill of fun and adrenaline while zooming down the slopes.

by Gavin Britton / The Beacon

Mt. Hood Meadows - Mt. Hood, Oregon

Possibly the most well known skiing spot near campus is Mt. Hood. With a gorgeous view of the mountain from The Bluff, this spot does not disappoint when you get up close and personal with it. Mt. Hood Meadows provides its visitors with countless trails to choose from, ranging from easier to extremely difficult for those with extensive experience in skiing or snowboarding. 

Mt. Hood Meadows also offers rentals and lessons for those who may be new to the sport. All of these can be purchased beforehand on their website here. This location is also typically where Outdoor Pursuits takes their skiing and snowboarding groups at a discount for UP students. The drive is about one hour and 30 minutes from campus and has gorgeous views on the way.

Mt. Hood Skibowl - Mt. Hood, Oregon

In another area of Mt. Hood is the Skibowl, which offers everything and a little more than the Meadows. The skibowl offers multiple trails for those interested in skiing or snowboarding, ranging in the same levels of difficulty as the Meadows. It also has multiple lodges and food choices for when you need to refuel before hitting the slopes again. These restaurants typically serve more diner-style foods, such as burgers, chicken tenders and sandwiches. There’s also plenty of hot chocolate, cider or coffee to bring some feeling back into your fingers.

However, what makes the Skibowl unique is the snowtubing option that you can purchase online. There are hills and tubing race tracks that guests can travel down if skiing or snowboarding are not your style. This is a great option if you want to experience playing in the snow but don’t want to go through the hassle of learning how to ski or snowboard, or if you have a little one joining you. Their website provides more information on their hours, information, maps and prices.

Ski run at skibowl in Mount Hood.
by Gavin Britton / The Beacon


Timberline Lodge - Government Camp, Oregon

Located just about an hour and a half from UP’s campus is Timberline Lodge, a location perfect for those looking for an overnight option for skiing or snowboarding. The Lodge is available for room accommodations, which allows visitors to get right out onto the snow once they wake up.

There are several trails for those interested, with lessons and rentals available for purchase. The Lodge offers guests tickets to ride on the snowfield higher on the mountain. There are also snowshoe rentals for those interested in hiking. What makes the Timberline Lodge unique is its location and level of snow. The snowy season is generally longer than most surrounding areas, allowing for more time on the slopes for visitors.

Mt. Bachelor - Bend, Oregon

Our last location is a bit of a longer drive out to Bend, which totals to about a three and a half hour drive. However, the views from Mt. Bachelor's are more than worth it. With plenty of trails and lessons, this is a perfect multiple-day trip for those interested.

Uniquely, Mt. Bachelor offers skiing tours with nature rangers who will provide education on the surrounding environment for free and dog sleds through the fluffy snow. Mt. Bachelor is a great location for those who might want to take in the sights at a slower speed and learn a little bit more while on their trip. They also have multiple restaurants and bars to get enough food and drink to fill you up to get you back down the slopes. 

All of these locations are great choices for beginners or expert skiers and snowboarders alike. With the snowy season upon us, gather a group of friends or family and check these places out. 

Molly Bancroft is a sports reporter for The Beacon. She can be reached at