Skinny Ski Time – Nordic Trails in Oregon
Skiing in Oregon isn’t just about the vertical. Our mountains and meadows also offer great access to Nordic skiing. Here are some ideas to get you kicking and gliding on those skinny skis.
Ski Trillium Lake’s four miles of trails for unparalleled views of snowy Mt. Hood. Nearby Teacup Lake Nordic offers 20 kilometers of groomed track for skating or classic skiing. Don’t miss the chance to take a break in the quaint warming hut. No dogs or snowshoes are allowed here or at Mt. Hood Meadows Nordic Center’s 15 wooded kilometers of groomed trails and set track.
Anthony Lakes Ski Area near La Grande offers 29 kilometers of groomed track as well as 11 more of singletrack and snowshoe trail. You can bring your dog on the Mud Lake Loop, and check out the historic Nordic Center Lodge, built by the Oregon Civilian Conservation Corp. during the Great Depression.
On a sunny day, you’ll be rubbernecking at the awe-inspiring beauty of Crater Lake at your elbow as you ski some (or all!) of the lake’s 33-mile perimeter trail. Shorter trails are another option for appreciating the quieter, colder season at the lake — Mazama Loop (1.7 miles), West Rim Drive (1.2 to 6 miles) and the Hemlock Loop Trail (1.3 miles), among others.
Folks at the Mt. Bachelor Nordic Center are well prepared for Nordic skiers. The 56 kilometers of trails there are groomed daily for cross-country lovers. Enjoy more than a dozen routes as well as a long season — sometimes stretching into May!
As with all wintertime activities, check for current road and terrain conditions before you go, and be prepared. Bonus: If you are interested in seeing these clear skies at night — check out the Feb. 7 full moon for a night ski.
About the Author: Eileen Garvin
Eileen Garvin is the editor of Travel Oregon’s Seasonal Features, enewsletters and annual visitor guide. When she’s not cooking up trip ideas, Oregon Dreamer profiles and outdoor adventures to write about, she’s out exploring Oregon.