Winter Nordic Trails Around Government Camp
Government Camp is a fantastic hub to take off on an adventure into the winter wonderland of the Mt. Hood National Forest. Grab a Sno-Park Permit from any of the local shops on your way up for $7/Day or $30/Season, place it in the car on the driver’s side windshield/dashboard, park in any Sno-Park or on the main street of Government Camp Loop and launch yourself into a great outing on the mountain!
Be properly prepared for Snowshoeing or Cross Country Skiing with trust worthy gear from any of the wonderful mountain rental businesses listed at the end of this article. Be safe! Remember your 10 Essentials: Water, Snacks, Warm Layers, Map, Compass, Sun Protection, Matches, Fire Starters, Knife, First Aid Kit & Headlamp.Tell someone where you are going and when you plan to be back. Don’t wear cotton – seriously, no jeans. Snowpants or gaiters are highly recommended.
Start with 1 pair of synthetic socks, a sweat wicking under layer then add a light to warm mid-layer and a breathable, waterproof layer to keep out the wind and any precipitation you may encounter. Nordic activities are a great aerobic workout! In fact, most people over dress and start sweating almost immediately, so do yourself a favor, layer appropriately for the pace and elevation you are choosing each day & start minimally with extra layers in the bag just in case.
Beginners or those looking to use nordic recreation as an exciting social outing, sign up for the highly recommended the Snowshoe and Cross Country Ski Tours at Mt. Hood Outfitters to learn about winter survival techniques or about the rich history of the Volcano!
Snow pack and weather conditions can dramatically impact your plans and these trails are not guaranteed to be ideal all of the time.
Winter Nordic Trails:
Crosstown Trail climbs from the Enid Lake loop to the Summit Ski area at the top of Government Camp. A gentle climb through the woods behind Government Camp and a wonderful downhill run back to the Glacier View Snow Park. 5.6 miles roundtrip.
Enid Lake Trails are a series of several rolling forested loops located just west of Government Camp, which are accessed from the Glacier View Snow Park.
Summit Trail is a gently rolling trail through the woods starting at the east end of the Ski Bowl West Parking Lot. The trails exits the trees at the Multorpor Red Chair and then continues past Skibowl East & Multopor Lodge onto a very flat trail the ends at the top end of Government Camp on HWY 26 across the street from the Rest Area. The Hemlock and the Barlow trails, considered the “back way“ into Trillium Lake are found at the east end of the Summit Trail. Summit is a great 4-5 mile out and back beginner trail.
Trillium Lake is one of the most popular tours on the mountain is a 4 ½ mile loop with access to the Mud Creek Loop. Trillium is popular with skiers and snowshoers alike. Trillium is groomed, from time to time, with a track for each. There is no set grooming schedule. On a clear day there is a beautiful view of the mountain, from the dam, which is about halfway through the loop.
Little Zigzag Falls this easy, 1.5 Mile Round Trip sometimes has snow and makes for a fabulous quick adventure along the Little Zigzag River to this 40′ waterfall.
Tamanawas Falls is a gorgeous 4 Mile Round Trip hike out and back to a large 50′ Waterfall off Hwy 35 just past Sherwood Campground.
Mirror Lake is a 4-6 Mile Round Trip hike with moderate elevation gain up Tom, Dick & Harry Mountain that peaks at a beautiful small Alpine Lake. You can continue past the lake to the peak and descend the way you came or via Skibowl West.
White River is a fantastic viewpoint of the Mountain and is also a great area for SLEDDING! Hike out & back as short or far as you would like.
Cross Country Ski Resorts – Groomed Trails for Cross Country Skiing Only, Warming Huts, Trail Fee.
Teacup Ski Trails are dedicated to cross-country skiing exclusively. The Teacup Nordic Club grooms 20km of trails that range from beginner to challenging. The area is groomed for both classic and skate skiing. The terrain over rolling hills has views of MT Hood, travels through wooded areas and open meadows and roads. Days that the trails are groomed The Ray Garey Cabin is open and heated for your lunch/rest breaks and socializing. Bathrooms available. Grooming donation requested. Memberships available.
Meadows Nordic Center has a large system of groomed trails located at the Hood River Meadows parking area just north of the main entrance to Mt. Hood Meadows.
Snowshoe & Cross Country Ski Rental Shops
Mt. Hood Outfitters (503) 715-2175
88661 E Government Camp Loop, Government Camp, OR 97028
Valian’s Ski Shop (503) 272-3525
8510 Government Camp Loop, Government Camp, OR 97028
Mountainology (503) 564-9156
73265 US-26, Rhododendron, OR 97049
Mountain Shop (503) 622-3120
68200 US-26, Welches, OR 97067
Otto’s Ski Shop (503) 668-5947
38716 Pioneer Blvd, Sandy, OR 97055