Mt. Hood Outtakes: 1967 Dodge A108 Van, Up Into Thin Air, and Timberline Lodge

We finally got around to joining son Ed (Ted to us) and his GF for some spring touring skiing up on Mt. Hood on this Sunday. It was a perfect sunny, mild and crystal clear day to climb some 3000 vertical feet (several miles in distance) up Palmer Glacier from the historic Timberline Lodge, to about the 9,000′ foot level, and then ski down. The climber’s trail starts in the parking lot, where Ted shot this pristine Dodge A108 van. Not exactly the ultimate snow-mobile, but by now the road was totally dry. A lot nicer than my old A100.

The rest of this post are shots of us working our way up the mountain the hard way, so if that’s not your thing, skip the jump. Well, there is a fine vintage Tucker Snocat too at the end.

Starting out on the long trek up. The destination is Palmer Glacier, below the craggy peak area.


Stephanie had snow shoes, so she peeled off about half way up as we were going to ski down. In case you’re not familiar with touring, we had “skins” on the bottom of our skis, which we peeled off at the top. Andrea has a split-board, whose two halves connect to make a snowboard.

The views were just absolutely stellar. That’s Mt. Jefferson, the next big Cascades volcano to the south about 50 miles off, and beyond it to the left a bit are the Three Sisters, near Eugene, close to 100 miles away. The lens on my old iPhone makes them look much smaller than they looked to the naked eye. The lodge, where we started, can be seen just to the right of the center marking sign.

Here’s looking the other way, with the summit of Mt. Hood (11,250′) behind us. We switched our skis and boots to downhill configuration, and off we went. Let’s just say it took a lot less time (and sweat) than the way up.

We headed for the lodge, which was built in 1935 as a WPA project. Among other things, its famous for being the setting for the movie “The Shining”. It’s one of the finest of its kind, especially so on the inside (the following images are from the web).

It’s full of delightful spaces, massive timber frame construction and fine art and craftsmanship everywhere.


One of the dining rooms, straight out of Games of Thrones.

We headed to the main dining room, which has a fine buffet on Sundays. Just the thing to replenish all those spent calories while enjoying the views.

And as we waddled out, there was the 1951 Tucker Snocat sitting prominently just outside the lobby window, with the mountain behind it. A fitting finale to fine day.