One of two runouts left at Timberline. MacKenzie Ryan photo.
It’s no secret Mt. Hood goes off in the summer. It’s also no secret that it didn’t see a lot of snow this year. Warm temperatures hit Oregon in the early summer, causing the already strapped-for-snow glacier to recede even more. Camps at Timberline changed where they train on the glacier and reduced the amount of coaching sessions they offered.
Climatological Snowdepth Chart. Northwest Avalanche Center photo.
But this is a story you’ve already heard, right? The Pacific Northwest had no snow, then got hot as heck, and now Hood’s in a sorry state.
Maybe not. One of the great things about snowboard culture is its relentless optimism. We asked people on the Mt. Hood summer scene to give one line that describes their silver lining to the low snow year. Here’s what they had to say.
Brian Jimenez, Coach at Windells
Coach Brian Jimenez with Windells campers. MacKenzie Ryan photo.
“Sunny and sick. We’re hiking more and focusing on tricks. It’s easier to focus on tricks when you’re hiking. When you have a tow rope, you can get sidetracked. It’s easy to stay focused.”
Yiwei Zhang, Pro Rider and Coach for Xinjiang State Team
Pro Snowboarder Yiwei Zhang. MacKenzie Ryan photo.
“I’m training our local team. Summer snowboarding–it doesn’t happen in China. We’re focusing on pipe and tricks because we’re going to prepare for a Chinese national competition. It’s next year, in January.”
Members of China's Xinjiang state team hike pipe on a hot afternoon on Mt. Hood. MacKenzie Ryan photo.
Kaleah Opal, Snowboarder/Summertime Hood local
Kaleah Opal about to throw down at Bode Merrill's Medium Quarterpipe Invitational. MacKenzie Ryan photo.
“Snowboarding the summertime, snowboarding with my friends. We’ve had sunny days every day. It’s fun learning new tricks. The summer stoke is alive. I learned a handplant yesterday. I’ve been working on rail tricks.”
Josh Dirksen, Veteran Pro Snowboarder
Josh Dirksen. No introduction or explanation needed. MacKenzie Ryan photo.
“The good thing up there right now is everyone’s packed together. You don’t miss seeing anybody. Everyone’s hitting the same line. It’s a more social experience. It’s a tighter-knit little community. The campers don’t care [about the lack of snow]. The pros and locals up here are talking about it, but I haven’t heard anyone who is not stoked.”
Bode Merrill Quarterpipe Invitational. MacKenzie Ryan photo.
Kyle “Roundhouse” Sullivan, Manager of Mt. Hood 26 Board Shop
Kyle Sullivan repping Government Camp's Mt. Hood 26 Board Shop. MacKenzie Ryan photo.
“Gypsy life! You can’t buy this fun. This summer I’ve been skateboarding a lot. This is my first time up all summer.”
Editor’s Note: We also asked Sullivan to recommend two must-do things visitors to Mt Hood can’t miss. He said Charlie’s Mountain View and Trillium Lake.
Trillium Lake, Mt. Hood National Forest. MacKenzie Ryan photo.