During our Winter season, you can catch a ride to 8,540′ on Mt. Hood. When in operation, the Palmer Snowcat opens up 3,690 vertical feet of snowcat skiing and riding from the top of Palmer to the bottom of the Jeff Flood Express.
This service typically runs on weekends and holidays from 11am to 2pm when weather permits, and is FREE for lift ticket and season pass holders. Check the Conditions page for Palmer Snowcat operating hours.
Take the Magic Mile up and unload to the right. Proceed toward Silcox Hut and you’ll see the line for the snowcat. We always have a Ski Host in a yellow jacket managing the line – so feel free to ask them any questions. A ski patroller will accompany you to the top and will advise you on any specific conditions you will need to be aware of as you begin your snowcat skiing or riding adventure!
Conditions can change rapidly on Palmer. Snow conditions are often variable – skiers and riders are urged to use extreme caution. The Palmer Snowfield is recommended for advanced skiers and riders only.
Why isn’t the Palmer Chairlift open during the winter?
The Palmer Express Chairlift was installed in 1996 to service our summer ski operations. We wish it was possible to maintain the Palmer Chair during the winter – but frequent and heavy winter storms coat the lift towers in thick snow and ice. These storms often have wind speeds exceeding 100mph and brutally cold temperatures. These factors make de-icing the lift virtually impossible. It’s typical that in the spring we have to replace many of the components on the lift that have broken or that have otherwise been compromised by the elements. So, in place of the lift, we offer our Snowcat service for your snowcat skiing enjoyment!