The snow has (mostly) melted, but that doesn’t mean Oregon’s mountain resorts are closed for the season. Five ski areas across the state take on another personality for the summer as they switch from snow sports to one-stop shops for scenic chairlift rides, biking, hiking and running trails, sunset dinners, go-karts and other outdoor adventures. Here’s your guide to unforgettable summer memories at Oregon’s mountain resorts.
Central Oregon: Mt. Bachelor
Have you dined at 7,800 feet? Mt. Bachelor in Central Oregon is once again offering its popular sunset dinner series on select weekend and holiday nights, a unique way to take in the sunset and dine from a curated menu of gourmet options including spirit, beer and wine tastings. The scenic chair lift ride here is simply stunning, with views of Three Sisters peaks, Broken Top and many of the Cascade Lakes below. Once you’re up top, you can grab a meal on deck at the Pine Marten Lodge, play a round of disc golf or take a U.S. Forest Service-led interpretive tour. You can also take to the trails by foot or bike. The ZipTour also starts from the summit of Mt. Bachelor, this adrenaline rush features three stages of scenic, fast-paced plunges. The resort is also a bike-lover’s paradise, with 13 miles of established downhill trails, bike rentals of all types, trail maps and Gravity Bike Camps for youth are offered all summer. The athletic endeavors continue with the annual GraviCross series combining downhill mountain biking and cyclecross.
Mt. Hood: Mt. Hood Meadows
Soak up the summer sunshine at Mt. Hood Meadows on the 8.5 miles of hiking trails. These trails are accessible from the parking lot and connect to the popular Umbrella Falls and Sahalie Falls trails. Or take the scenic chairlift ride to get a bird-eye view of the wildflower-covered meadows and see Mt. Jefferson and Three Sisters on the horizon. The resort’s summer plans include geocaching and games on the deck, plus the return of events like the Culinary Tour dinner series, Makers Market, and brewers’ dinners. The resort’s popular daycare, preschool camps and summer camps are a welcome chance to entertain the whole family at the mountain.
Mt. Hood: Mt. Hood Skibowl
Mt. Hood Skibowl is a playground for the whole family, with more than 20 attractions including zip lines, the Malibu Raceway, a bungee tower, mini golf, and disc golf at the Mt. Hood Adventure Park. At Skibowl West, visitors will find a thrilling half-mile dual alpine slide with speeds up to 20 miles per hour along the 350-foot drop. More family fun can be found at Skibowl’s Malibu Raceways, where you can get behind the wheel of a nimble sprint kart or high-performance indy race kart and try your hand at making hairpin turns around the race track. For a more serene adventure, opt for the interpretive nature trails, or rent a canoe, kayak or paddleboard through Mt. Hood Outfitters and set off on your own.
Mt. Hood: Timberline
You will still find snow near Timberline, which has the longest ski season in North America. (So it’s no wonder the U. S. Ski & Snowboard teams train here during the summers.) Take the Palmer Express high-speed quad lift to ski or snowboard to your heart’s content through Labor Day, while the Magic Mile Sky Ride offers spectacular views of Mt. Hood, Palmer Snowfield and Mt. Jefferson nearby. The kids will love the heated outdoor pool (newly-renovated in 2023) at an elevation of 6,000 feet and open all summer. Or, explore the mountain’s family-friendly hiking trails, including trips to Little Zig Zag Falls and Paradise Park Loop, both short drives from Timberline. The Timberline Bike Park features all-ability lift-accessed trails. Visitors can also ride the U.S. Forest Service Timberline to Town trail, a five-and-a-half mile ride down to Summit Pass, which is operated by Timberline, in the town of Government Camp.
Southern Oregon: Mt. Ashland
Mt. Ashland in Southern Oregon comes alive for a few hardcore trail events in the summer, including the annual Mt. Ashland Hill Climb bike race in June — the 18-24 mile Hill Climb is for the die-hard enthusiast; with 4,600 of climbing to 6,500 feet, it’s the second-highest elevation gain of any hill climb in the U.S. The Siskiyou Out Back Trail Run held annually in July offers three lengths, from 50K to 100K, beginning and ending at Mt. Ashland Lodge. The sunshine uncovers singletrack nearby — Ashland is a mountain bike destination —that includes the 13-mile Mt. Ashland Super D and 14-mile Time Warp to Ashland, both downhill rides accessible via shuttle with Ashland Mountain Adventures.
Eastern Oregon: Anthony Lakes
Anthony Lakes Mountain Resort in Eastern Oregon aims to open for summer operations in early July with Summer at the Starbottle — enjoy the deck at the resort’s Starbottle Saloon, a family-friendly restaurant that offers fresh, locally sourced food with spectacular views at 7,100 feet along the Elkhorn Scenic Byway. Located in North Powder (between La Grande and Baker City), the resort’s rugged terrain and accessible trail system make it a hotspot for mountain biking, with more than 8 miles of singletrack following the Nordic ski corridors. The Broadway Flow Trail is 3 miles of sloping downhill and banked turns. If you don’t want to leave this picturesque place at night, book a summer yurt or secure your spot at more than a half-dozen campgrounds and rental cabins.