Meadows Blog

Meadows Offers Remote Parking and Shuttling on Busy Days

You know the scenario – fresh snow, bluebird day – lining up with a weekend or holiday and bam! Everyone wants to head to the mountain. In the past three seasons we’ve had a total of only twelve days that our three parking lots reached capacity. Not bad considering that’s around 500 days of operation. But if it happens on the one day that you’re coming up, being turned away at the lot is a bummer.

This season, Meadows has taken measures to prevent turn aways by securing remote parking on the west side at Welches Elementary School (at mile marker 42 off of highway 25) and the north side at Mt. Hood Country Store (right on highway 35). If our lots fill we can shuttle guests from those locations. Our goal is to not have to turn away any guest wanting to come to recreate at Meadows, even on our most popular days. Scroll down for more specifics on these remote parking shuttle lots. 

There’s a lot we can do together to make the drive to the mountain smooth and to maximize your parking experience at Meadows, including:

  • Take a bus – Meadows Park & Ride runs from Portland weekends and holidays. You can reserve a seat and be dropped off right at our lodge – so you have a guaranteed parking spot! There are other bus and shuttle options listed on Mt. Hood Meadows shuttle page.
  • Ride share – Do your best to fill all the seats in your vehicle. Drive Less Connect matches people going to the same places.
  • Keep traffic moving – Make sure your vehicle is well prepared for mountain weather. Carry traction devices and know how to use them.  Use the designated areas to put on chains BEFORE you need them.
  • Be aware of traffic patterns – arrive before 8:30 AM, or plan to arrive later – around noon – when spaces open up from departing morning skiers. Check the highway cams on – and go through Hood River (I-84 to Highway 35) to avoid highway 26 traffic. 
  • Check the road conditions before you leave. For current road condition information in Oregon, call 511 or (800) 977-ODOT (6368).  Reports are available 24 hours/day.  Visit for information on road and weather conditions, incidents and traffic delays.
  • Stay connected – sign up for parking lot updates at – we update parking lot status on our conditions page and send out tweets. 
  • Follow the signs – Our parking trucks have variable messaging to provide you the current status. We also use signs along the roadway to direct you to the next available lot. We appreciate you following the signs and the guidance of our flaggers – they are there to assist you.

We’re confident that following this advice will make for the best commute to and from the mountain even on the busiest days. 

As our lots reach capacity it is essential that you look for our remote parking signage in Welches  and in Parkdale. Meadows has secured parking space at these two locations:

Welches Elementary School

Located just east of the stop light in Welches, before you reach the Subway restaurant (near mile marker 42.0). As you're heading to Meadows after you pass through the stop light in Welches:
  • Turn right at Woodsy Way (the next main intersection)
  • Immediately take a left which will bring you through the Hoodland County Park
  • You'll see our greeters - there is ample parking spots available

Welches Middle School Remote Shuttle Parking Lot


Mt. Hood Country Store

The store is prominently located on Highway 35 and the parking is very convenient along the North and East sides of the store. Just look for the signs and you'll be guided to your parking spot. 

Mt. Hood Country Store remote shuttle parking

We will run shuttles from the lots and from these remote lots during the time our main lots are at capacity. Our plan is to provide transportation from the remote lots as long as people are actively parking and until we reopen our parking lots. We will begin shuttling people back to their cars beginning at 4:30 PM and the shuttles will depart from Meadows every 30 minutes until 6 PM. This will prevent you from being turned away at the resort. The parking and the shuttle are free (and there are rest rooms available at each remote parking location). 


As we reach capacity in our lots, we will:

  • Place signage along highway 26 and highway 35 updating parking lot status and directing you to these remote shuttle lot locations
  • Update our conditions page and tweet to MHMLifts on twitter, alerting you when our lots have reached capacity and the remote lots are open.

The remote lot locations will be especially desirable for guests who are concerned about driving their own vehicle in winter conditions, as they should be below the snow line on most days. 

So bring on the powder and the bluebird weekends. We’ll see you on the mountain!


  1. Ken

    January 12, 2014

    Thanks Meadows for a great morning of skiing.

    I have a safety concern. The fact that you do not enforce chain control on the access road to Meadows from Hwy 35 is extremely dangerous. Your costumers are the only ones who use this road and you need to do something to protect them. 2 wheel drive cars without chains have a real problem making it up this road when its snowy. You need to stop 2wd cars prior to starting up this road and have them chain up in a safe spot instead of the middle of the access road.

    This morning it was like bumper cars on the access road. I saw people lying under cars in the middle of the road trying to put chains on. And cars sliding sideways trying to get around them. I saw a person pushing a car to get it moving and then run after it trying to jump in. I saw a car stuck facing the wrong way in the down hill lane trying to put chains on when a Meadows Parking truck came down the hill and spun 180 and rammed into a snow bank just before hitting the car. Someone is going to get killed trying to put their chains on in the middle of this road.

    Its an easy fix. You need to have your parking people stop cars as they turn off 35 and if they don't have 4WD or AWD and snow tires they need to chain you there. I have seen this many times on the access road, you know about it and addressed it in last nights conditions report. Please do this to protect your costumers.

    Meadows: Very good illustrations Ken of why people need to get their chains on before they arrive at the ski area. However, we are not the enforcement agent - that falls to Oregon State Patrol and Mt. Hood National Forest. So for now we really need to educate and apply peer pressure to affect change. Thank you for pointing out how incredibly dangerous the putting chains on in the middle of the roadway is.

  2. Gus

    January 20, 2014

    This is a great step forward. Only wish there was more regularly scheduled shuttle service from these locations (like all weekends and holidays), rather than just during a parking crisis. Would make it a lot easier to plan for travel to the mountain. Another idea would be to enforce a minimum number of passengers per vehicle on weekends/holidays (2 or 3 perhaps?).

    Meadows: Thanks Gus! This is a first step and we have been looking into how we could offer shuttle services like this on a more regular basis. It is an expensive proposition, so getting public / private partnership will most likely be necessary, particularly to keep the price for passengers free.

  3. Steve

    January 29, 2014

    This is a great addition. Multiple weekends in previous seasons parking has been really frustrating. Do the shuttles have to stop and chain up or are they already good to go?

    Meadows: They should be ready to go, unless it is an unusual situation where the snowpacked roads are just at our access road or parking lot. Then it would be more expedient to drive regular highway speed without chains, and chain up at when needed (rather than drive at reduced speed on chains).

  4. Kristin

    April 25, 2014

    If you park in the Welches Elementary School parking lot, or at the Mt Hood Country Store, assuming the shuttles are running, do you still need a Sno-Park permit? I'm not trying to beat the system, and avoid paying $4, I just want to know if I need to purchase one ahead of time, if I plan on parking there. Thanks!

    Meadows: No Sno-Park permit is needed in either of those locations as they are not Sno-Parks. However, we are not parking there the rest of this season. We shuttle only on days we believe our lots will fill.

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