January 24, 2020 / Comments (0)

Sunlight on the Mountain

Photo by Dan Sherwood: Tommy Ellingson on Illumination Saddle at the Mount Hood Solstice party.

Whether you are a long-time reader of Shred Hood or a new visitor to the site, you are probably asking yourself what the deal is with all the solar ads on a Mount Hood Adventure site.

On one level, the answer is simple: It was my call. I’m the founder of Shred Hood, editor and publisher, and my job these days involves roof-top solar – helping homeowners to go solar by swapping out their utility bills for solar panels.

The second and not-so-simple answer to why you are seeing solar ads on Shred Hood may be a bit painful for those of us who love mountains in winter. It has to do with the climate crisis. Glaciers and snowpacks are melting.

Anyone who knows the mountain knows that it is changing. A few degrees of warming can turn snowstorms into soggy monsoons, replacing powder days with puddles. Extreme weather swings may create the occasional perfect powder storm for deep-snow bliss, but they also greatly increase the number of warm, wet storms that threaten the future of the mountain recreation culture we know and love. This truth gets harder to deny with each new winter season.

The sooner we shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy, the better. And there is no resource more renewable than sunlight.

The good news is that the shift to renewable energy is already happening, and it is a good thing. It’s creating jobs for people like me and my colleagues at Blue Raven Solar and many, many other companies. The more economic activity we can generate, the more jobs, the more excitement, the more prices will come down, and the more people will want to go solar. If you want to learn how to swap your electricity bill for an affordable solar payment, just pop me a line and we can make it happen.

I don’t know about you, but I’m not giving up on a future of snow-capped mountains. If we can manage to complete the transition to renewable energy in time, we just might be able to save the glaciers of Mount Hood for future generations to enjoy as we have. That is what solar power has to do with this Mount Hood adventure website.



Big Thanks to Mountain photographers Sean Jacks and Dan Sherwood for these images from Mount Hood’s mesmerizing Illumination Saddle.

— Ben Jacklet, Editor and Publisher of Shred Hood


Last modified: January 24, 2020