Snowmobiling

22
Dec
2013
jloomis

Where is all the Snow?

Picture of barely any snow near Frog Lake, Oregon

It's been a poor winter so far in Western Oregon as far as mountain snow goes. Christmas is only a couple days away and there is only a trace of snow at Government Camp (~4,000'). We have friends coming home for the holidays and we were planning on having a snow day next Saturday. Normally there would be 3-4 feet of snow at Government Camp this time of year. On the same day last year, there was 43 inches of snow in the vicinity. I picked a bad year to buy a new snowmobile.

24
Nov
2013
jloomis

Bonney Meadows Early Season Snow Camping Trip

Picture of Mount Hood at sunrise from Bonney Butte

I am still waiting for winter to really hit the Oregon Cascades, but we found a little snow up high at Bonney Meadows (around 5,200'). Bonney Meadows is on the Southeast side of Mt. Hood about 1.5 miles Northwest of Boulder Lake off forest road 4890. I took half a day off work Friday to go snow camping with my friend Kyle and his buddy Matt over the weekend. We met up in Sandy around 1 PM and hit the road after grabbing a quick bite to eat.

17
Nov
2013
jloomis

Bennett Pass, Bonney Meadows, and Grasshopper Road Snowmobile Adventure

Picture of John Taking a Break After Riding a 2008 Polaris 700 Dragon RMK

We received a promising weekend weather forecast, predicting over a foot of mountain snow by Sunday. I wasn't planning on snowmobiling this weekend, but couldn't resist fresh powder. John and I headed up to Bennett Pass on Sunday Morning and arrived to a nearly empty parking lot. The only other vehicle belonged to a cross-country skier. The SnoPark had been plowed and the snowbanks around the perimeter were now about 2-3 feet tall. The weather was windy with ice pellets raining down and a temperature around 30°F.

09
Nov
2013
jloomis

Snowmobiling Near Jean Lake and to Bonney Meadows

Picture of Snowmobiling on Bennett Pass Road

After a couple days of rain in the mountains, the snow level came back down and a few inches of fresh snow fell around Mt Hood. I wasn't sure if there would be enough snow to snowmobile, but my friend John and I decided to chance it and head up to Bennett Pass on Saturday. The SnoPark at Bennett Pass is about 9 miles East of Government Camp, Oregon across from Mount Hood Meadows ski resort off Hwy 35. It is often the only SnoPark around Mt Hood with enough snow to snowmobile this early in the season.

04
Nov
2013
jloomis

Snowmobiling to Badger Lake and Bonney Meadows, Oregon

Picture of Ryan Snowmobiling near Bennett Pass, Oregon

We finally received our first real snow storm with snow down to pass levels around Mt Hood. Work slowed down, so I took Monday off to enjoy the snow. My friend Ryan and I decided to go snowmobiling out of Bennett Pass. This would be my first real trip testing my new Polaris Switchback Assault. It would also be the first ride on the new to me 2008 Polaris 700 Dragon RMK which Ryan would be riding. Bennett Pass SnoPark is about 9 miles East of Government Camp, Oregon across from Mount Hood Meadows ski resort off Hwy 35.

03
Oct
2013
jloomis

Pre-Season Snowmobiling Near High Prairie/Lookout Mountain, Oregon

Picture of Snowmobile in Truck at High Prairie, Oregon

With record rainfall in Portland for the month of September, I have been eagerly awaiting a temperature drop and the mountain snow that would follow. I got my wish this week with the first snow of the season falling in the higher elevations (above 5,000'). I am still off work for another week or two (due to knee surgery), so I loaded up my new Polaris 800 Switchback Assault snowmobile on Thursday and headed up to the mountain. Timberline Lodge was reporting 18" of snow on the ground at about 6,000' elevation.

27
Apr
2013
jloomis

Last Snowmobile Ride of 2012/13 Season on Mt Saint Helens

Picture of Snowmobiling on SE Side of Mount Saint Helens, Washington

My dad, Steve, drove up from Reno, NV to visit for the weekend. I had been trying to get him to come up for a snowmobile trip for the past few weeks, but weather and timing didn't line up until this weekend. Unfortunately the warmer than usual temperatures and less-than-average snow pack limited our snowmobiling options. I didn't want to drive all the way to Central Oregon, so we decided to try out Mt Saint Helens. From other reports it sounded like there was still enough snow to snowmobile out of Marble Mountain Sno-Park on the South side of Mount Saint Helens.

14
Apr
2013
jloomis

Last Snowmobile Ride of the Season from Skyline Sno-Park

Picture of Little Snow for Snowmobiling out of Skyling Sno-Park

I am stubborn, as most would attest to, and not willing to give up on winter yet. I took my friend Ryan snowmobiling today for his first time even though Spring is here. I knew we would probably find plenty of bare road, but I couldn't resist the opportunity to go out one last time from Skyline Sno-Park in the Mt Hood National Forest. We had fresh snow the day before and overnight, so I was hopeful to find at least a few miles of riding.

13
Apr
2013
jloomis

Snowmobiling near Mt Adams and A.G. Aiken Lava Bed

Picture of Snowmobiling at the Foot of A.G. Aiken Lava Bed on Mt Adams, Washington

Katie and I pulled the snowmobiles over to Mt Adams on Saturday for an exploratory trip. I wanted to see how much snow was around and maybe get up onto the A.G. Aiken Lava Bed on the South side of Mt Adams near the boundary of the Yakima Indian Reservation. The A.G. Aiken Lava Bed is just over one mile East of the popular South climb trailhead at Cold Springs campground. The weather forecast was not stellar, with high winds and snow showers predicted, but we hoped to at least find some fresh snow to ride on.

30
Mar
2013
jloomis

Snowmobiling at Mt Saint Helens and the Plains of Abraham

Picture of Mount Saint Helens from the Plains of Abraham

After vacationing in Mexico last week, I was eager to get back in the snow. The weather was forecasted to be beautiful with temperatures in Portland hitting the upper 70's Saturday. My friend John and I planed to snowmobile around Mount Saint Helens and the Plains of Abraham. Mount Saint Helens (50 miles NE of Portland, Oregon), an active stratovolcano, is famous for its eruption on May 18, 1980. Now only 8,363 feet tall, the mountain previously stood at 9,677 feet tall. The Plains of Abraham on the East side of Mount St. Helens is a popular destination for snowmobilers.

09
Mar
2013
jloomis

A Sunny Day for Snowmobile Play Near Timothy Lake, Oregon

Picture of Jason Taking a Break with Mt Jefferson in the Background

Spring is in the air, but I am not quite ready for it to arrive. On Saturday I took my friend Donnie from work on his first snowmobile adventure. We left early, thinking Skyline Sno-Park (South of Mt Hood) would fill up quickly due to the sunny weather forecast. I was wrong. Skyline was the least busy I have ever seen it. Maybe the beautiful weather sent everyone over to ride on Mt Saint Helens.

03
Mar
2013
jloomis

Snow Camping Near Bonney Meadows, Oregon

Picture of Jason and Katie Snow Camping Near Bonney Meadows, Oregon

I took Katie on her first snow camping trip this weekend. She agreed to go as long as I kept the wood stove going all night to keep her warm. We had originally planned on going to Mt Saint Helens, but the weather forecast was not as good as we would have liked. Instead we planned on going to Bonney Meadows which is on the Southeast side of Mt. Hood about 1.5 miles NW of Boulder Lake.

17
Feb
2013
jloomis

Family Snow Day 2013 - Frog Lake, Oregon

Katie and Jason - Family Snow Day 2013

We had family come into town this weekend from San Diego, CA (my aunt and two of my cousins), so we planned a snow day up near Frog Lake, Oregon. Originally Katie and I had planned to go up on Saturday, get everything set up, and snow camp overnight before l everyone else arrived on Sunday. Unfortunately the weather forecast for Saturday predicted rain in the mountains, so we held off going up until early Sunday morning.

10
Feb
2013
jloomis

Snowmobiling Near Badger Lake on Grasshopper Road 4860

Summit of Grasshopper Point

What better way to finish the weekend than with another snowmobile adventure? On Sunday my friend John and I went snowmobiling from Frog Lake Sno-Park (about 7 miles SE of Government Camp, Oregon). I wanted to ride about 20 miles to the area where we have been deer hunting the past few years near Badger Lake. There are some clearcuts and open areas that could be potentially fun on a snowmobile.

09
Feb
2013
jloomis

Candlelighters Snowmobile Rides 2013 - Skyline Sno-Park, Oregon

Candlelighters Snow Day 2013 - Skyline Sno-Park, Oregon

February 9th, 2013 marks the 30th year the Mt. Hood Snowmobile Club has hosted the Candlelighters Family Snow Day on Mt. Hood. This all day event at Skyline Sno-Park includes sledding, snowmobile rides, games, hot cocoa, coffee, drinks, snacks, hot dogs and chili. It's a great way to give something special to families who are or have been touched by childhood cancer.

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