Newsflash: Timberline is Open!
Technically Winter begins December 21, but for snowboarders, it starts as soon as the first snow flies — whether from guns or the sky — and we get to go snowboarding. Right? But in a magical place called Oregon, it’s almost like it’s always winter. In fact, snow permitting, Timberline reopens before it starts snowing, but after the summer camp-hype has gone away, in other words, it’s open on weekends, RIGHT NOW. Though powder is nonexistent and getting there is a hike, it’s worth every turn.
Because it’s not really the season yet, and the summer camps are long gone, Fall may actually be one of the best times to hit Timberline. The biggest reason: no kooks. Imagine riding alongside only people who are as into snowboarding/skiing as you are. That’s Timberline in the Fall. Add in the fact that it’s often above the Oregon clouds (way better than a rainy day in Portland), and riding the Magic Mile is so damn pretty it’s something people pay to do even without ‘boarding once they get to the top, it’s a unique experience every one should have at least once.
If you’re in Oregon or considering make the trek, we offer a few quick tips for making the most out of your fall-boarding experience.
–Don’t get there until noon. There’s no powder. And the glacier will be a nice solid block of ice if you race up there for first chair. Chill out and wait until it gets good and slushy.
–Bring water. Much like summer, once you’re up there, you’re not coming down ’til the day is over, so bring whatever you’ll need. Fast laps on the Palmer Glacier are surprisingly dehydrating, and you can leave your stuff in the lift stand at the bottom of the Palmer chair. Same goes with sunscreen and extra gear.
–Dress warmish. It’s not summer anymore, but it’s also not winter yet. Don’t plan on rocking your hoodie when the wind is whipping across the glacier, but it can also heat up if the sun is out. Your best bet is to wear layers you can easily ditch once you get up there.
–Leave your expectations at home. The conditions change fast this time of year and just because there was a sweet ass jump on Saturday, doesn’t mean it will still be there Sunday. But chances are, if the lifts are running, there’s something worth doing up there.
–Buy a Fusion Pass. Not to sound like too much of a salesmen, but hot damn, the Fusion Pass is a good deal — probably the only pass in the country that gives you literally 8 months of shredding (plus you get to ride Ski Bowl in the winter.)