One of the silver linings to Oregon ’s legendary precipitation is that so much of it falls in the form of snow in the mountains. Mount Hood, for example, has been buried by as much as 100 feet of snow in a single year. That makes a lot of people happy from late fall through spring and even into summer, as Oregon snowpacks support the longest ski season in the country (at Timberline on Mount Hood), as well as snowboarding, snowmobiling, and snowshoeing.
In addition to hundreds of miles of groomed and backcountry cross-country ski routes, alpine resorts are concentrated in the northern and central Cascades and in the state’s northeast corner. A little over an hour’s drive away on Mount Hood , Portlanders have their choice of five developed ski resorts —Mount Hood Ski Bowl, Cooper Spur, Mount Hood Meadows, Timberline, and tiny Summit, the Northwest’s oldest ski resort, dating to 1927.
In the central Cascades, there are family-friendly Hoodoo Ski Bowl  southeast of Salem , Willamette Pass  southeast of Eugene , and Mount Bachelor , the Northwest’s largest and most developed ski area, southwest of Bend .
At Mount Bailey , near Diamond Lake in the southern Cascades, downhillers can experience snowcat skiing, a more affordable alternative to being dropped off on inaccessible slopes by helicopter. The area also offers extensive cross-country, skating, sledding, and snowmobiling terrain.
Near the California border in southern Oregon, Mount Ashland  offers downhill action in addition to 100 miles of cross-country trails.
In the northeast, skiers have their choice of Anthony Lakes Ski Area, between Baker City and La Grande, and Ferguson Ridge Ski Area and Salt Creek Summit, both east of Joseph.
Follow the links for details on all these ski areas. For snow reports and other updated information throughout the season, a good source is OnTheSnow.com (www.onthesnow.com/OR/ ).
Note that for winter sports in many areas November 15–April 30, you’ll need to purchase a Sno-Park permit ($3 for 1 day, $20 for the season) to park your vehicle in posted winter recreation areas. Sporting goods stores, ski shops, and resorts near the slopes sell them.