Travel plans/Winter 2021 Mt Hood

From WikiDotMako

Group trip to Tilly Jane A-Frame cabin on the north side of Mt Hood, Oregon, in March 2021.

We have the cabin rented from Sunday, March 14 through Thursday, March 18th. (TODO: confirm dates/nights).

Daylight saving on Sunday; later sunset (the sunset will be at 7:15PM at Mt. Hood on Sunday)

Travel Logistics[edit]

  • Leave ~8AM?; pick up lunch somewhere or bring from home
  • Start hiking by 2PM? (after lunch/pack up/skin up)
  • ETA at Tilly Jane A-Frame ~4:30PM?

Nadya Preference:

  • Leave 6AM, bring food
  • Start hike 10:30AM
  • ETA Tilly Jane 3PM
  • Explore area

Driving in three cars: L's car (small sedan, 5 seatbelts, only 3 with skis), N's car (5 seatbelts, 4 with skis uncomfortably, 3 with skis comfortably), W's car (5 seatbelts, 3 skis?).

We will drive from Seattle to the "Tilly Jane Sno Park", which is right next to a small ski area ("Cooper Spur Ski and Tubing"). Via I-5/84/35 this is about 250 miles, 4h15m. Going I-5/26 (south around Mt Hood instead of northern route along Columbia River) is roughly the same distance and time (a bit shorter but slower). Trailhead is at 4900ft.

NOTE: will need Oregon Sno park pass, and parking lot may be unplowed: [1]

Two options for hike from the parking lot to the cabin is:

  • via the trail "Tilly Jane Ski Trail #643", 2.5miles with 2000ft elevation gain, narrow [2]
  • the summer road up to Cloud Cabin, 9 miles with 2000ft elevation gain, wide, may be bare at base [3]

Planning to drive down Sunday morning, park, then hike/skin in. On Thursday morning, ski down to the car and drive home. Nadya is going home on Tuesday. Some folks may bail earlier in the week.

The 2.7mile trail, up 1992ft to the cabin. Will need to haul pretty much everything up, unless somebody wants to do a day hike back down. Maybe we can haul stuff in a sled? Not clear how direct (vs. side gradient) trail is.

Alpine Skiing[edit]

Note: this section originally written by B, who has limited ski touring / avalanche experience.

The main alpine (downhill / ski touring) route in this area seems to be skinning up to Cooper's Spur, then skiing down the "triangle" moraine below it, down to the tree ridge or so. Cooper's Spur is at 8450ft, the treeline is somewhere around 6400ft, and there seem to be routes that don't go above 28 degree (especially if you don't go quite to the top of the spur).


Hiking up to Cooper Spur, and back, seems pretty simple. From there, there is a ridge going further up towards the summit of the mountain, and it is probably possible to hike up another couple hundred feet (elevation) on a ridge. There is unsafe technical climbing at the very top, and a steep snowfield before that which is also extremely steep (50+ degree slope). Not clear where the safe limit is; 9000ft?

The Timberline trail, which goes all the way around Mt Hood, comes close to Tilly Jane, and cuts across the ski field below Cooper Spur. It should be possible to do a day hike/snowshoe along that trail to the Gnarl Ridge area.

Nording Skiing[edit]

There are probably options downhill of Tilly Jane and Cloud Cabin. TODO: see if there are specific trails/routes/etc.

The hiking routes would probably also make decent nordic ski routes.


  • sesame sticks
  • peanuts, almonds
  • DONE? chocolate
  • ?cookies
  • chips (maybe leave in the car for the last day)
  • other snacks - DONE: jerkey
  • DONE: oatmeal
  • DONE: dried heavy cream
  • DONE: instant potatoes
  • DONE: couscous
  • DONE: instant ramen
  • instant rice
  • DONE: instant mashed potatoes
  • freeze dried tofu?
  • DONE: eggs
  • sausages
  • (could consider bringing fresh produce for the first couple days)
  • DONE: peanut butter
  • DONE: freeze dried vegetables
  • DONE: freeze dried pears
  • DONE: tea
  • coffee
  • instant miso soup (may need more?)
  • DONE: oil, pepper, salt
  • DONE: granola
  • DONE: brown pickle?
  • DONE: cheddar?
  • beer?
  • wine?
  • x2 rye bread (L)
  • x2 sandwich bread (W)
  • zuke or carrot bread?
  • Other things to bring: oil, salt, pepper, snacks, hot chocolate, tea
  • Snack ideas?

Week before: carb load

Date Breakfast Lunch Dinner Note
2021-03-14 (Sunday) Home/on the road Home/on the road couscous with veggies and eggs? * 6 people
  • TO BUY/DO:
2021-03-15 (Monday) oatmeal with peanut butter and freeze dried fruits? eggs? sandwich (ploughman's? PBJ?) mashed potatoes, veggies, sausages? * 6 people
  • TO BUY/DO:
2021-03-16 (Tuesday) oatmeal with peanut butter and freeze dried fruits? eggs? sandwich (ploughman's? PBJ?) Japanese curry with rice? * 6 -> 5 people
  • TO BUY/DO:
2021-03-17 (Wednesday) oatmeal with peanut butter and freeze dried fruits? eggs? sandwich (ploughman's? PBJ?) ramen with veggies? * 5 people
  • TO BUY/DO:
2021-03-18 (Thursday) oatmeal with peanut butter and freeze dried fruits? eggs? on the road home! * 5 people
  • TO BUY/DO:


The cabin will have a wood stove, wood and log splitting equipment, and some large pots we can use to melt snow on top of the stove. There are also some pit toilets. Other than that we need to bring everything; this will basically be like wild camping but no tent needed. The sleeping loft is a second story, by ladder, and looks like just a wood floor.

There might be lanterns/lamps we can use if we bring propane?


  • toilet paper
  • trash bags
  • propane tank ("green one pound") for lamps (?)


  • stoves/fuel and cooking equipment
  • utensils incl cutting knives
  • cups
  • bowls
  • food!
  • drink!
  • hot chocolate
  • coffee and tea equipment

Nadya thinks each person needs to bring personal:

  • map
  • compass
  • whistle
  • headlamp + tested batteries
  • wide mouth containers for min. 2L of water, plus some way of insulating them (e.g. sock)
  • non-cotton warming layers in waterproof sack
  • waterproof over-layers
  • small first aid kits
  • lighter + fire starter
  • hygiene pack: toilet paper/ sealable bags/ hand sanitizer/ wag bag
  • p-style

Ski/outdoors equipment:

  • skis
  • skins
  • poles, pref extendable
  • helmet
  • boots (as well-fitted as possible)
  • sun stuff: hats, sunglasses, glacier glasses, sunscreen, lip stuff, nose covering
  • day gear pack (?)
  • avalanche safety equipment: beacons, probes, shovels
  • snacks
  • thermos (?)

other personal

  • hygiene: wipes, toothbrush, sweet tooth, eyeballs, etc
  • for OLD people
    • knee braces
    • wrist braces
    • cane

needed for sleeping/in cabin:

  • min. 20F bag
  • winter sleeping pad
  • things to wear in cabin

Group to carry:

  • first aid including
    • tape
    • gauze
    • sling
    • sam splint
    • ibuprofen
    • allergy medicine
  • emergency blanket
  • foam pad
  • firestarters
  • We can leave fresh clothes in the car to change into when we come back.
  • non-ski shoes

Post-trip notes[edit]

  • We brought too much food! 2 loaves of bread should be enough for 3.5 days for 5-6 people? Maybe 10 hot chocolate is enough. Less oatmeal.
  • At this altitude, some didn't have as much appetite.
  • Bring more jerky next time.
  • 8 curry roux is enough for 5 people.
  • Freeze dried veggies are faster to cook.
  • Took about 40 minutes to go up to the tree line ridge and about 10 minutes to come back to the hut.
  • The trail after the burnt forest area is narrow and can be tricky to go down.
  • Ending the downhill run at the ski resort is great.
  • More blister patches.
  • Firestarters are helpful.