Abundant snowfall puts Meadows’ season ahead of schedule

THE HOOD RIVER EXPRESS LIFT carries skiers Tuesday afternoon at Mt. Hood Meadows. Thanks to the copious snowfall the resort has received over the past few weeks, the lower-elevation terrain accessed by the lift opened ahead of schedule.

Photo by Ben Mitchell.
THE HOOD RIVER EXPRESS LIFT carries skiers Tuesday afternoon at Mt. Hood Meadows. Thanks to the copious snowfall the resort has received over the past few weeks, the lower-elevation terrain accessed by the lift opened ahead of schedule.

While snow just started falling in downtown Hood River this week, it has been falling in copious amounts up at Mt. Hood Meadows Ski Resort for a few weeks now.

As of Friday morning, the resort had received 94 inches so far this season and boasted a mid-mountain depth of four inches less than that. From Thursday midday to Friday morning, seven inches had fallen to the delight of skiers and snowboarders.

Dave Tragethon, vice president of marketing, sales, and communications at the resort, wrote in a blog on the Meadows’ website that the early-season snowfall has given the resort “the best start to the season in a decade.”

That snowfall allowed Meadows to begin daily operations early last week — 14 days ahead of schedule. In addition, the resort opened up terrain at Hood River Meadows, which is the lowest-elevation section and typically doesn’t open until the end of December. Meadows’ highest elevation lift, Cascade, also opened this week, along with Vista, which accesses terrain on the south side of the resort. The only area that hasn’t opened yet is the double black diamond terrain accessed via the Heather Canyon lift; Meadows has not offered up an estimate as to when that would occur.

Meadows has also announced that the resort will have a night skiing preview this weekend, with night terrain lifts operating until 9 p.m. this Friday and Saturday. The resort will add Sunday to that schedule the week after and then will run lifts every day from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. from Dec. 22 to Jan. 1. The exceptions to that schedule are Dec. 24, when lifts will close at 4 p.m. and Dec. 31, when lifts will stay open until midnight for a New Year’s Eve celebration.

To keep up to date on lift schedules and mountain conditions, go to Meadows’ website at skihood.com.

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