If you’re looking to take your skiing or snowboarding to the next level this summer, Mount Hood has 19 – wait, make that 20 – options worth considering. I just got an email from former Olympian AJ Kitt, so I’d better add in his new Speed Camp starting up this summer. Scroll down to number 20 for details.
The Timberline skiing and snowboarding resort, a national historic landmark, has the longest snow season in North America, and some of the greatest racers and freestyle artists in the world are Mount Hood summer regulars. Ted Ligety, AJ Kitt Kelly Clark, Sage Kotsenburg, Andrew Weibrecht and Nick Goepper are just a few examples, along with stars from the national teams of Japan, France and Australia.
Whether you are into shredding park, shredding gates or both, you’ve got plenty of summer training options on Mount Hood’s upper-mountain slopes, where the season extends into August and sometimes September, depending on snow pack. You can work on your form in the bumps up on Palmer Snowfield, perfect your tele turns up by Illumination Saddle, or finally nail that double cork with a nice safe landing into a huge air bag.
Here are 19 solid summer shred options to consider on Mount Hood:
1. Mt. Hood Summer Ski Camps. The only camp on the mountain that offers training in moguls and snowboard racing as well as alpine racing (GS and slalom), slopestyle terrain park snowboarding and slopestyle park skiing. Lodging just east of the mountain, camps for skiers and snowboarders age nine and up. Camp director Mike Annett and his staff have more than three decades of history on Mount Hood. Dates and prices here.
2. High Cascade Snowboard Camp. Summer snowboarding for all ages and levels, with guest appearances by Sage Kotsenburg, Kelly Clark and other stars, lodging in Government Camp, a 22-foot halfpipe, and tons of camp activities. For dates and prices click here.
3. Windells Camps. Snowboarding, freeskiing and skateboarding camps, with tons of freestyle features on the mountain and a killer skate park at the Windells base camp, the “funnest place on earth.” Your chance to mix it up with Nick Goepper, Nick Visconti, Joss Christensen, Keri Herman and more. Dates and prices here.
4. Party Beach Ski Camps. “We believe having fun is a pathway to success in skiing and life.” Hard to argue with that. This new camp has five week-long sessions for young racers that can also be purchased as a package deal for $2,600.
5. Cascade Winter Sports Club. High-level alpine training for youth and adult racers with Head Coach Paul Tollefson and a quality team of local coaches. More than 88 dates available, $2300 for the summer, with lodging for $25 per night or round-trip rides from Portland for $10 round-trip. Details here.
6. Ligety Weibrecht Ski Camp. It’s hard to think of a better racer to learn from than two-time Olympic gold medalist Ted Ligety. Add double medalist Andrew Weibrecht, slalom specialist David Chodounsky and the Mahre Brothers, and you’ve got serious star appeal for this camp. Details here.
7. Erich Sailer Ski Racing Camps. Erich Sailer has been a Mount Hood summer regular since 1956, and Julia Mancuso and Lindsey Vonn are just two alumni of this long-running Hood camp. The camp is open to all ages and ability levels. Lodging is at the Resort at the Mountain in Welches near a 27-hold golf course and tennis courts. Details here.
8. Timberline Summer Snow Camps. The resort offers both freestyle and race camps. They’re run by the resort, so their campers are the only ones on Hood who get to cut to the front of lift lines. Packages include slopeside lodging at Timberline Lodge if you can afford it. Details here.
9. Tichy Racing Sumer Ski Camps and Clinics. The Tichy family is well known and respected on the mountain, and their camp packages include race training, lift tickets, food, video analysis, ski testing and lodging right in the middle of Govy. They offer 10 camps and five clinics during the summer in Oregon. Details here.
10. Olin/Lacasse Ski Racing School. This group runs camps at Vail in the winter and on Mount Hood in the summer. They offer four weeks of summer training on Hood in July, with 5:30 am wake-up, gate training from 7-10 am, and dryland training and video analysis in the evening. More info here.
11. National Alpine Ski Camp (NASC). NASC offers six 10-day full program sessions on Mount Hood in the summer. You can also sign up for seven-day or ten-day day camps, providing your own transportation up to the mountain. Prices range from $1595 for a seven-day day camp program to $4495 for a 21-day double session. Training, dryland and individualized video analysis. Details here.
12. Willy Camp. Willy Scroggins and his brother Jesse are seriously fast racers and Mount Hood characters who aren’t afraid of a little humor and hyperbole. They claim they’ve been training skiers for “over 200 years,” and suggest bringing a lunch “if you are one of those people who eats.” An affordable, bare-bones option for race training without bells and whistles. Details (sparse as they may be) here.
13. Keely’s Camp for Girls. Mount Hood’s only camp exclusively for girls and young women, with an all-female staff featuring the great Keely Kelleher and other top racers and Olympians. 7-day race camps cost $1,695. Details here.
14. Speedy’s Ski Camps. Race training for Juniors and Masters run by Mark “Speedy” Archer, with tactical, mental and physical training. Five sessions on Hood, including one slalom only, one GS only and three slalom and GS. Details here.
15. US Elite Ski Camps. Open to kids 9-18 years old, with eight days on snow and one day of whitewater rafting for $2950. This group caters to New England kids with a special chaperoned flight from Boston and/or New York to Portland. Lodging is at Cooper Spur on the north side of Mount Hood. Details here.
16. Wy’East Summer AT-Tele Camp. This camp focuses on backcountry ski mountaineering skills for telemark and alpine touring skiers. The $310 three-day camp does not include lodging or lift tickets. Clinic elevation is 6,000 to 9,700 feet, so campers should be in reasonably good condition. Details here.
18. Snowperformance. Coach Gavin Kerr Hunter, based in Crystal Mountain in winter, offers some affordable training options on Hood for the summer. Training for high-level masters and first-time racers, from 2-day to 5-day sessions. Details here.
20. American Downhiller. This is the new camp by AJ Kitt, with top-speed sessions May 16-21 at Mammoth in California and June 9-15 at Mt. Hood Meadows. Staff includes current World Cup racers Steven Nyman, Bryce Bennett, Alice Mckennis and Leanne Smith, along with former World Cup racers Daron Rahlves, Marco Sullivan, Johno McBride and Chris Brigham. This sounds like a compelling option for racers who want to see exactly fast you can race down Mount Hood on a cool morning in June. What do you think? 50 mph? 60? 70?
Do I hear 80? 90? 100?
That’s AJ Kitt ripping it down Beaver Creek back in the day.
Mt. Hood is also home in summer to many camps for team racers from Stratton to Breckenridge, not to mention national teams from Japan to Australia. I won’t get into those details here since the focus of this article is summer camp options that are open to the public.
If you know of other summer ski and snowboard camps on Mount Hood that are open to the public, or if you notice any errors that need to be corrected, please e-mail us so we can update this live article. Also, if you have attended any of the camps listed above, please feel to share your ratings, experiences and impressions using the comments section below.
One note on camp pricing comparisons: Be sure to check into exactly what is included in the camps you are comparing. Lodging and lift tickets are not always included in the listed price, and these costs can be significant. Day passes at Timberline in summer are $62 regardless of age and summer season passes are $899. An extensive list of lodging options on and around Mount Hood can be found here.
Happy Summer Shredding!
Here is a slideshow from the Palmer Snowfield above Timberline Lodge, shot during a typical Mt. Hood summer camp day in July 2014, with participants from Mt. Hood Ski & Snowboard Camp:
And here is a link to a cool segment by Oregon Field Guide about summer skiing on Mount Hood.
Last modified: June 16, 2014