It takes about a dozen people, lots of rope, and a winch to haul and erect Timberline's 30' Christmas tree. It will take a lot more to get it decorated. Join us for the tree lighting ceremony on December 8th at 6pm.
On Thursday, December 7th, twelve members of Timberline’s management, maintenance, and housekeeping team worked together to haul Timberline’s massive Christmas tree into the lodge through the back patio, up through the Cascade Dining Room, and into the Main Headhouse. Using a winch from the Ram’s Head Bar Mezzanine one floor up, the tree was lifted into place. The maintenance crew worked together to get the trunk centered in its stand and tethered in place, while housekeeping mopped up the melting snow that fell from the tree’s branches. It’s now ready to be lit and decorated at Timberline’s Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony on December 8th at 6pm. This event is open to the public…join us!
Every Tree Has a Story
This year’s tree was provided by Denise and Lawrence Pearson. Denise is an Ohio native. Growing up, Denise and her family drove out to Oregon every year in a 1947 Chevy to visit Timberline Lodge. They would stay and play on Mt. Hood.
Lawrence is a native Oregonian who fell in love with Denise and continued the tradition of traveling up to the mountain to go inner-tubing with Denise and their friends. Denise and Lawrence got married at Timberline Lodge on Christmas Eve in 1977. They arrived at Timberline in a 1960 VW Van with the wedding party inside. Theirs was the first wedding in the C.S. Price wing, which was added onto the main lodge in 1977. After the ceremony the whole wedding party bundled up and went out on the hill to inner-tube.
Denise and Lawrence relocated from Portland to Sandy, OR, where they purchased a 200-acre farm on Coleman Road. This property was part of the Leigh Coleman homestead. Coleman was one of the original Mazamas to first climb the Mt. Hood. Denise and Lawrence cleared some of the land, removing some of the existing trees. Denise then planted 50 Nobel firs as part of a replanting program. We are honored to be presenting one of Denise & Lawrence’s 30-foot Nobel firs for the holiday season at Timberline lodge.
Palmer Open Weekends
Timberline is pleased to announce it will be opening Palmer Snowfield on weekends for skiing and snowboarding starting Oct. 7 and 8 (weather permitting) for advanced skiers and snowboarders. Get your 2017/2018 Timberline Season Pass and start using it this weekend!
Timberline to open Palmer October 7th for advanced skiers & riders
Timberline is pleased to announce it opened Palmer Snowfield on weekends for skiing and snowboarding starting Oct. 8 (weather permitting). The Palmer Chairlift will operate from 9am to 3pm on Saturdays and Sundays. Lift tickets are $61 each and will be available at Guest Services in Timberline’s Wy’East Day Lodge. 2017/2018 Timberline Season Pass holders may use their new pass!
There will be some snow grooming on Palmer for a better experience; however, conditions can change rapidly. Early season snow conditions are extremely variable with the possibility of ice in the mornings and thaw in the afternoon. Skiers and riders are urged to use extreme caution. The Palmer Snowfield is recommended for advanced skiers and riders only.
Stay tuned to the Timberline Lodge Conditions page for future operating times and lift schedule. The operating schedule will be dependent on weather conditions.
Terrain parks are not scheduled to open at this time.
For those not interested in skiing or riding but very interested in seeing the snow at Timberline, come up and enjoy hiking and sightseeing around the lodge (sledding and tubing is not permitted). Many of Timberline’s Mt. Hood restaurants will also be open offering breakfast, lunch, dinner, and drinks with a view.
Be advised: Palmer Snowfield conditions are suitable for advanced skiers and riders only.
Be aware and be safe, early season conditions exist.
Timberline continues to invest in innovations and infrastructure to exceed guest expectations in 2018
In September, Timberline launched a new, streamlined website at timberlinelodge.com. Hammerquist Studios, a Seattle-based company with a focus on adventure travel and outdoor sports, designed the fresh and clean website with our guests in mind. Featuring a modern yet nostalgic feel, the new website is easier to use with vivid photography and a narrative that tells the unique story of historic Timberline Lodge and Ski Area. Improvements include a 3D virtual tour, on-line dining reservations (coming soon), and HD web cams.
Timberline Snowcat Purchases
During the 2017/2018 season, Timberline will take delivery of two more new PistenBully Park Pro Snowcats. The new machines will join the five Park Pro Snowcats that have been used for the past two seasons at Timberline. The Park Pro is a great performer, from trail grooming to building and shaping the most progressive terrain park features imaginable. This substantial investment will ensure Timberline remains at the leading edge of grooming quality and park design.
New Motor on the Palmer Chairlift
Recently, the 600-horse power, 8000+ pound, main drive motor of Palmer was removed and transported for service. In addition to the challenge of physically getting the motor out and back into the lift house, it heads to Portland for a dip-and-bake, a conventional method of applying varnish. The process involves removing the electric motor coil, dipping it in a vat, and then baking for a time. Now serviced, the motor is as good as new and ready to power the iconic Palmer Chair for many summers to come.
New Terrain Park Features
This year, the Timberline Parks Crew is excited to build a rail trailer. The trailer will be loaded with features destined for Conway’s Terrain Park. This new piece of equipment will allow the crew to have rails ready to set upon opening without having to fight the snow-covered rail piles, getting terrain park product out on the hill and open quickly.
Among the new features being created, Timberline is building a “waterfall” rail.
Timberline Discover Pass
For only $149, Timberline is offering a beginner season pass this year to encourage guests that anyone can learn to ski and “practice makes perfect”. The Discover Pass includes unlimited Bruno’s Chair access and unlimited beginner rentals for the 2017/2018 season. This is a great way for beginners to improve their skills and gain confidence on the slopes at a fraction of the normal price. A day of beginner rentals can run about $40 per day, while daily lift tickets are $47-$71 depending on your age. A Discover Pass pays for itself in just two visits. Discover Pass holders also get a 20% discount on Discover Program and Kids Club lessons.
Discover Pass holders can upgrade to a regular Timberline Season Pass at any time by paying the difference at Tier 2 pricing. This equates to $400 for adults 25-64, $170 for teens/young adults 15-24, and $50 for kids and seniors. The unlimited beginner rental benefit does expire with the upgrade.
The Timberline Tucker Double IPA celebrates innovation in Oregon hop growing and the Mt. Hood Brewing Co.’s long time relationship with Timberline Lodge. A heaping dose of Oregon State’s latest aroma variety hop, Strata (formerly X-331), is used to brew the Timberline Tucker. At this point, Strata is only being grown in very small quantities. Timberline Lodge and the Mt. Hood Brewing Co. supports Oregon State’s breeding research to develop new varieties with interesting qualities by showcasing this promising hop. Oregon State is doing stellar work with this project. The Tucker Snowcat, an iconic image that has been associated with the lodge for many decades, is worthy of the label. The classic machine embodies the rugged, harsh conditions of Mt. Hood but also the playful nature of the mountain.
Timberline Tucker Double IPA is a massive punch of grapefruit and pine, with a solid platform of rich malt to balance. Available in cans and on tap, Timberline Tucker can be enjoyed at the Mt. Hood Brewing Co. in Government Camp and at the Y’Bar and Phlox Point Cabin at Timberline Lodge.
Timberline Lodge Partners with Traeger Grills
Timberline Lodge’s new partnership with Traeger Grills is the perfect complement to the lodge’s innovative food and beverage program. Traeger Grills are natural wood pellet smokers that help people cook delicious food outdoors. Pure hardwood is the fuel for Traeger’s signature flavor. Traeger Grills have been inspiring Timberline Executive Chef Jason Stoller Smith since before he got his first Traeger, over 10 years ago.
With this partnership, Timberline gets four Traeger Grills to use throughout its seven Mt. Hood restaurants. At Timberline’s Labor Day Mountain Music Festival, guests enjoyed brisket, corn, and chicken smoked on Traeger’s Double Commercial Grill Trailer. This winter, guests will enjoy Timberline proprietary beef and other Northwest-grown meat smoked on Traeger’s Pro Series 34 Grill and two of Traeger’s new Timberline 1300 Grills. While the Timberline Traeger is not named after the historic lodge, the name perfectly lends itself to the partnership.
Timberline and Stanley-DeWalt Partnership
New this season, Timberline is proud to announce a brand new partnership with the Stanley-DeWalt Tool Group. Guests can expect to see these great tools on and off the hill and at all tech benches within the ski area. It is very exciting to begin a partnership with such a strong American brand on Timberline’s 80th anniversary year. The team at Timberline Lodge looks forward to maintaining everything from the lifts, to the lodge, to skis and snowboards with Stanley-DeWalt products.
Celebrating Timberline Lodge at 80
September 28th marks 80 years to the day
since President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s motorcade wound its way up Mount Hood in order to deliver the president and first lady to a magnificent and nearly finished Timberline Lodge...
Earlier that morning, the president had presided over the dedication ceremonies of Bonneville Dam. This was a big day for Oregon.
Following a Works Progress Administration sponsored music and dance presentation in Timberline’s outdoor amphitheater, the president stood at a podium on the Lodge’s front terrace and gazed southward to those assembled in the parking lot. He looked out over an impressive view of the forest below and the beautiful sweep of the Cascade Mountains and proceeded to dedicate Timberline Lodge “as a monument to the skill and faithful performance of workers on the rolls of the Works Progress Administration.” He stressed the benefits of recreation, and the point that Timberline was “a place to play for generations of Americans in the days to come.”
The project provided jobs to an idled economy, and recreational infrastructure for a young nation. All across this land, and to this day, we enjoy the fruits of their labor.
At a time when people were questioning the American Dream, wondering if the so-called “American Experiment” had perhaps failed, Timberline Lodge, Bonneville Dam, and many other Government sponsored public works of the day became examples of what could be done in a land that had seemed to have lost its universal promise.
Unlike most WPA projects however, Timberline was not a big utility project. Instead, it was of all things, a ski lodge; a place for recreation, contemplation, health, and enjoyment.
It was to be a place that celebrated the region and its natural environment and reflected an indigenous and organic style of architecture. It was to be a place for the people, and a catalyst for community. As WPA administrator Harry Hopkins wrote, it was to be “an investment in social usefulness.”
Funded as a Federal Arts Project, Timberline Lodge focused on architecture, old-world quality, fine art, and craftsmanship. In the end, it was to be a work of art itself, and indeed, it became the northwest’s crown jewel for the WPA. Timberline stood as a symbol of hope and purpose and became representative of the notion that when government works with the people, it can provide solutions to some of society’s biggest problems. So when Roosevelt took his place at the podium on that September day in 1937, there was excitement, pride, and a strong sense of accomplishment among those assembled. TheTimberline Lodge project had been good for Oregon, and good for Oregonians.
Today, the Lodge is an Oregon icon. It has become an essential place for retreat and recreation, and a place to celebrate our life in the mountains. It is a source of Oregon pride, and had become a part of Oregon’s cultural DNA. When guests are visiting from out of state, Oregonians often take them to their beloved mountain lodge, and they often take the same lovely drive up the Gorge that President and Mrs. Roosevelt took so many years ago. It has been said that our future lies in preserving and celebrating our history. Happy birthday Timberline Lodge!
Jon Tullis is the Director of Public Affairs for RLK and Company.
Mountain | Community
Timberline unveils new fire sculpture on the back patio. Timberline Lodge partnered with Orion Forge of Bend, OR, on this stunning new addition to the back patio. Spearheaded by Timberline’s Assistant GM, Scott Skellenger, the fire pit is as much a piece of art as it is an amenity for our guests’ enjoyment. The sculpture weighs in at 1000 pounds and was hauled onto the patio by a Timberline snowcat and crew of heavy lifters.
Timberline unveils new fire sculpture on the back patio.
The sculpture weighs in at 1000 pounds and was hauled onto the patio by a Timberline snowcat and crew of heavy lifters. It was our honor to work with 4th generation Timberline
Lodge blacksmith Hunter Dahlberg of Orion Forge, who describes his process below.
Building this fire sculpture has been an amazing and
engaging project – not just because of the technical nuts and bolts of building
a fairly complex piece, but also due to the history of smithing and the sheer
amount of high quality forged work up at the Lodge. The knowledge of all the
fine smiths that have worked there makes us feel so thankful for the opportunity
to do what we love and contribute to the rich ironwork heritage on the
The design is clearly inspired by the tradition of
blacksmithing at Timberline: giant tongs, the forge-like fire pot, and the
anvil of course. Some of the harder edges are softened by the curves, making
what could be an intimidating space more welcoming. The piece is designed to
draw people in and invite them to stay awhile and share with one another.
Hopefully it fosters not only an appreciation for craftsmanship, but in a broader
sense creates an atmosphere of community and connection.
We used antique as well as modern tools to build the
sculpture – each time we reached for a modern tool we’d ask ourselves, what
would O.B. Dawson do? Russ Maugans? Darryl Nelson? We always came around to the
idea that most smiths would use the best tool for the job, and that traditional
work could be accomplished with modern means. And, at any rate – the forging,
especially the large tongs, was done pretty much the only way it could be done,
the old fashioned way.
The anvil perched atop the piece is a Vulcan brand, not a
brand that’s revered as a great anvil among smiths, but certainly a brand that
has been around a long time, and one with beautiful lines. The iconic shape
serves to draw people in – I’m sure you’ve seen it in the lodge a million
times, how tourists will stand in front of the anvil on the main floor and just
The tongs act as a support for the large round table, in
fact, the table will move slightly within the jaws of the tongs – and that’s on
purpose! We want folks to discover that the tongs are real – and doing what
We’ve included the snow goose symbol and also the “hands
working together” symbol from the fireplace stone carving. The goose is clearly
so strongly associated with Timberline that it had to have a place on the
sculpture, and the hands working together symbol, while more obscure,
represents the many crafts, craftspeople, and skill sets that enabled, and
continues to enable, the lodge to exist. We are honored to become a part of
that lineage, in whatever small way.
Ultimately, we hope this piece serves as a warm and cheerful
gathering place, surrounded by the natural beauty of the mountain and the
grandeur of the Lodge. This fire sculpture is a fresh element of the whole
Timberline experience and we hope it can inspire people to marvel at what can
be accomplished with many hands working together just as the Lodge does.
Timberline is offering a beginner season pass this year to encourage guests that “practice makes perfect” and anyone can learn to ski! The Discover Pass includes unlimited Bruno’s Chair access and unlimited beginner rentals for the 2017/2018 season.
beginner season pass this year to encourage guests that “practice makes
perfect” and anyone can learn to ski! The Discover Pass includes unlimited
Bruno’s Chair access and unlimited beginner rentals for the 2017/2018 season.
This is a great way for beginners to improve their skills and gain confidence
on the slopes at a fraction of the normal price. Consider this…a day of
beginner rentals can run about $40 per day, while daily lift tickets are
$47-$71 depending on your age. A Discover Pass pays for itself in just two
Discover Pass holders can upgrade to a regular Timberline
Season Pass at any time by paying the difference at Tier 2 pricing. This
equates to $400 for adults 25-64, $170 for teens/young adults 15-24, and $50
for kids and seniors. The unlimited beginner rental benefit does expire with
All Timberline Season Passes are good from opening day (TBA) through May 28, 2018, 2017/2018 Season Passes are on sale now.
Mountain | Community
Bill Brett, the now retired mountain manager from Timberline Resort, OR, is the 2017 Recipient of the PNSAA Tower of Excellence Award.
TIMBERLINE RESORT, OR, IS THE 2017 RECIPIENT OF THE PNSAA TOWER OF EXCELLENCE
AWARD. HERE’S HIS STORY ON LIFT MECHANICS IN SOME OF THE U.S.’S TOUGHEST WEATHER.
“Here at Timberline, we built the first Palmer lift; a Riblet fixed double in 1977 to 1978. It was the dream of Richard Kohnstamm,
the owner, to have chairlift access to the upper mountain. Mr. Kohnstamm was a
29-year old social worker/investor who rescued Timberline from bankruptcy in
1957. It took a few years of fighting for it, and finally, we got the
permission to do the construction.
It took us a couple of years to build this lift as the
weather tore it down while building it in the first twelve months. During that
first installation, the lift was about ready for chairs when an October ice
storm moved in.
The weather left two feet of rime ice built up around the
haul rope, then the wind started blowing and blew three towers over. Nobody had
constructed a chair in that environment before, and while Riblet was willing to
install the project, nobody knew what was going to happen with those kinds of
loads. These towers were not the tripod style towers we have today. It was a
learning experience. An interesting note is that the Palmer Lift was originally
going to be Riblet’s first detachable. They never built the grip, and we used
to joke about Riblet not figuring out how to get the clip in and out of the
rope fast enough.
Mt Bachelor and Mt Hood Meadows both enjoy working in the
same weather as Timberline. There is also a lot of information and learning
coming out of New Zealand where there is some big icing. I’ve gleaned some
wisdom out of those areas, but from an operating standpoint, the location of
Timberline is the most challenging. But while it’s severe, it’s the challenge
of it that keeps you going. The people who work around this stuff for a living
are high in character. I think of people like R.J. Knight who would be splicing
up on Palmer with two inches of ice in his beard in his frozen coveralls while the
rest of our crew was wearing rain gear. R.J.’d just keep on and finish the job.
The biggest challenge with year-round operations is we don’t
have a full season of lift down time like other resorts. So we just keep
working consistently between weather and schedules. We operate our lifts
year-round, and Timberline has the longest ski season in North America.
Timberline used to be a little area, just busy on the
weekends, quiet during the week, with one ski patroller. The most significant
change that ever happened was the expanded summer ski operation
when we built the chair on the upper mountain. That changed the whole picture
of Timberline and how it turned into a world-class destination during the
summer months. Funny — a lot of people in Portland who ski here in the
wintertime don’t even know we ski in the summer time. Most of our guests are
from all over the world as there are a limited number of places to ski during
The Palmer lift closes during the winter months. Besides the
rime ice, there can be winds up to 100 miles per hour. When winter comes to the
lower lands, and the boss says it’s time to put Palmer to bed, we have a
system, what we call “winter assemblies” that are mounted twelve feet below the
cross arms for strength. We drop and secure the rope in those assemblies for
Wy’East Cafe Remodel
Timberline Lodge’s Cascade Dining Room is world renowned. However, what people are talking about this winter is the new Wy’East Cafe, located across from the historic lodge, in the Wy’East Day Lodge.
TIMBERLINE’S NEW WY’EAST CAFÉ A BIG HIT WITH SKIERS
Timberline Lodge’s Cascade Dining Room is world renowned. However, what people are talking about this winter is the new Wy’East Cafe, located across from the historic lodge, in the Wy’East Day Lodge. Having faced challenges with the food program in the Day Lodge since its construction in 1980, Timberline’s management recently decided on a complete remodel.
The project for the new Wy’East Cafe was collaboration between Timberline, Skylab Architecture, JBK Kitchen Consultants, and Lorentz Bruun Construction, all of Portland, Oregon. The design team, led by Donnie Schmidt of Skylab, took inspiration from design features and geometry found in the historic Timberline Lodge. These elements were combined with the appearance and function of a high-traffic food court designed for people on the go. “The idea,” explains Timberline operator Jeff Kohnstamm, “was to speed up the whole process while improving food quality and giving the customer a more personal and dynamic experience.” To achieve a made-to-order food venture, the team realized early on that a completely modernized kitchen was needed. They settled on what is called a “scatter system” organized around an octagonal “servery.”
Customer survey feedback helped in determining the menu. It was designed to provide a variety of healthy, hearty, and convenient meal options catering to active skiers and snowboarders.
To create a dynamic aesthetic to the restaurant, the design incorporates large photographs taken by Portland climbing legend and professional photographer Boone Speed. These photographs of mountain landscapes and chairlift elements were enlarged and transferred to wood paneling at Forge Graphics in Portland, then assembled on site by Overkill Design and Creation, of Beaverton. The photographs are featured in the restaurant’s seating area within a 130 ft. long display wall which is wrapped in striking geometric designs, again inspired by patterns found throughout the resort.
By widening the door and creating a very inviting entranceway, the new design allowed the space to become a focal ending point, a destination itself, just off the central mall of the Day Lodge. Installing new metal signs, which utilize the original custom font found throughout the Day Lodge, was the finishing touch. Upon completion, the finished product looked great, but was untested. Timberline readied itself for the upcoming ski season. Then, snow fever hit, and Oregonians by the thousands flocked to the ski area to enjoy some of the best holiday ski conditions in years. As the snow piled up outside, the new Wy’East Cafe provided a cozy yet stimulating gathering place and fed the masses in style, and in record time. Good design, and a commitment to quality proved their worth.
Timberline Lodge welcomes Bruno, the new St. Bernard Mascot!
TIMBERLINE LODGE WELCOMES BRUNO, THE NEW ST. BERNARD MASCOT
Oregon’s historic Timberline Lodge is a place of traditions. One such tradition continues this week with the arrival of a new Bruno, an adorable St. Bernard puppy. St. Bernards are commonly associated with snow-capped mountains. These large dogs are resistant to cold and have an uncanny sense of smell and direction. They earned their name for saving lives in the Alps’ St. Bernard Pass between Switzerland and Italy in the 1700s. St. Bernards have been a part of Timberline’s traditions since 1937, when Franklin D. Roosevelt dedicated the lodge. The first Timberline St. Bernards were reportedly Hansel and Gretel, and then Lady and Bruel. For a brief time, the St. Bernard mascots were replaced with Huskies when the Kohnstamm family took over management of the lodge in the 1950s. The first mascot under the Kohnstamms’ watch was Mac, who belonged to an employee. Then, due to popular demand, the Kohnstamms reintroduced St. Bernards. Since the early 1960s the lodge has had St. Bernards named Heidi and Bruno. They lived at Timberline, had free-roam of the building, and greeted countless visitors, skiers, and climbers. The dogs have been featured in the ski area’s brochures, ski pins, posters, and on Timberline Lodge matchbook covers. In the 1980s a children’s book, “Heidi’s Rose,” was published. In more recent years, the dogs have been featured in many of the outdoor-oriented fashion catalogs that are often photographed at the lodge. Guests can also purchase their own plush Heidi or Bruno at Timberline’s gift shops.
In the mid 1990s, their job as mascots became more stressful. The increasing volume of visitors to Timberline Lodge became a bit of a burden on the dogs, leading to concerns for their health and demeanor. After considering the situation, management molded the long-term tradition to a changing world and came up with a wonderful solution involving employees. Since that time, rather than allow the dogs to live independently at the lodge, Heidi and Bruno have belonged to long-term employees who become their primary caregivers and alpha masters. The dogs cheerfully come and go to work with their appointed alpha master, still spending most of their time at the lodge carrying on the tradition and bringing happiness to Timberline’s many visitors.
This week, Ski Area Sales Manager Kim Nylund has taken on the master responsibilities of a very playful and sweet purebred male St. Bernard mascot. He comes from the same breeder and lineage as Heidi, Timberline’s female St. Bernard, who is about a year and a half old. While Heidi is based at Timberline’s Front Desk in the Main Lodge, Bruno will be stationed across the parking lot at the Wy’East Day Lodge. At just 11 weeks old, Bruno is already getting a lot of attention at Timberline.
MEET BRUNO AT TIMBERLINE’S WY’EAST DAY LODGE MOST TUESDAYS THROUGH SATURDAYS