Mount Hood Facts

Mount Hood Facts
Mount Hood in Oregon is what is known as a stratovolcano. This term describes a very high volcano that is cone-shaped with many layers of volcanic ash, rock and lava that has hardened over time. Mount Hood is considered a dormant volcano but has erupted as recently as 1907. Mount Hood is only 50 miles from the major Oregon city of Portland and is a hugely popular destination for climbers, hikers and skiers.


The fourth tallest mountain in the Cascade Range--a group of mountains which extends from northern portions of California through Oregon, Washington, and into British Columbia--Mount Hood has an elevation of 11,239 feet above sea level. The top of Mount Hood is permanently capped with snow, making the mountain a magnificent sight anytime of year but especially in the warmer months. Mount Hood is Oregon's highest point and according to the United States Geological Survey it is the volcano within the state that has the best odds of erupting in the future. Some of the more recent past eruptions include a major event in 1781 and 1782 as well as minor eruptions in 1805 and the last one in 1907. The portions of the mountain from its lower elevations all the way to the top comprise the 47,000 acre Mount Hood Wilderness. There are a dozen glaciers on Mount Hood, which was named in 1792 for Lord Samuel Hood, a British Admiral who served during the Revolutionary War.


In the summer

During the warm months, Mount Hood provides tourists and visitors with several activities, some of the challenging nature. There are multiple trails on and around Mount Hood that are designated for hikers and bikers, with several of these trails also employed by mountain bikers. There are lifts that will take a rider along with her bike up the mountain so she can ride back down. The surrounding area near Mount Hood is also home to hiking trails and paths as well as campsites. Mount Hood is estimated to be the mountain that is the second most-scaled in the entire world, with Japan's Mount Fuji the only other peak that has more people attempt to climb it. The Timberline Lodge, located at the 6,000 foot mark of the mountain, is where every climber must alert authorities that they are making an attempt to get to the summit as well as the place that they must check back in to let them know they are accounted for. There have been over 100 deaths on the mountain, with the majority of those occurring from exposure to the elements and from falls. Other activities on and around Mount Hood in the summer include bird watching, summer skiing, rafting, observing the wildflowers of the region, fishing, swimming, kayaking and canoeing.

In the winter

The winter months see Mount Hood come alive with incredible skiing opportunities. There are numerous areas on the mountain for this sport, such as the Skibowl, which is the biggest night-skiing spot in the U.S. with as many as 34 lit runs on its 90 acres. Skiing is offered at Mount Hood Meadows, which boasts a 430-inch annual snowfall, as well as the Summit Ski Area, Mount Hood's first and the oldest in all of the Pacific Northwest. It is an excellent place for beginners to learn how to ski. In addition to skiing, there is snowboarding on Mount Hood. There are miles of trails groomed specifically for use by cross-country skiers and those interested in snowshoeing. There are also designated snowmobile trails and parks designed for sledding and tubing down the mountainside.


The Latest from the Community

Nice easy flat trail that leads to beautiful red rocks.
Stunning hike but extremely steep and tiring! Bring plenty of water.