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Need advice on hiking and skiing Mt.Hood
I am planning on hiking to the top of Mt. Hood from the Timberline parking lot and skiing all the way down to Govy sometime before the winter is over and the snow on the pine melts. People who've done it before what advice do you have? Is there a specific route to take or is just straight up from the end of palmer? Where can I go for more information? I am an inexperienced climber, should I just not do it?
My gut instinct is that if you need to ask these questions you probably shouldn't go, but since I did it with very little experience I'll give you some info anyway. But you need to do way more of your own research, what I am saying is not comprehensive.
Google mt hood summit, it's one of the most popular climbs in the world. And it is a climb, you need crampons and an ice axe. I did it in June, when it is just steep snow but I have heard that in winter the gates can consist of 10 ft water ice steps that I would probably want two tools and some pro for. So if you do it before April probably best to take the chute. And if you do it in spring, or any day that is warm and sunny, you need to do an alpine start (many hours before dawn) to be off the mountain by rockfall time. By the time the lifts open it is too late, so if you want a lift bump do it in midwinter on a day that will be well below freezing. And keep in mind it is an enormous avalanche slope, if you go in winter you need to be a knowledgeable backcountry skier and pick a low danger day. Basic route beta is you go straight up from palmer into the crater on the right side, attain a ridge called the hogsback, and then from there you have 2 options: the most direct and aesthetic is the pearly gates which go straight up from the hogsback to the summit, and then the old chute which is off to the left and slightly easier, this is what you ski down. There is a narrow and very exposed traverse between the top of the old chute and the summit. If you fall around the summit area you probably die.
Bottom line, this is not a hike it is an alpine climb and you need to know alpine climbing things and have alpine climbing gear. It is substantially more simple in May or June, but at that point you're not getting a lift bump since you need to be most of the way up by dawn and you're not skiing all the way to govy. I wouldn't do it in winter if I'd never held an ice axe before, but you could just go to the crater and ski from there
Edit: ignore everything I said about getting a lift bump, I only mentioned it because I misread your post and thought you were planning on getting one, I would not recommend it for timing reasons.
TLDR: if you are an inexperienced climber wait until late spring, you won't have enough snow to ski down to govy but the climb will be much easier and safer. And most of all do some research on the route on one of the many available climbing websites
**This post was edited on Jan 21st 2022 at 11:17:43pm
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