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Gaining Traction on Peak Day Transportation

Categories: Guest Connection Transportation

Mt. Hood Meadows already operates one of the largest transportation fleets in Oregon and this summer we added another mini shuttle to that number. Meadows now has eight Bluebird school buses and four mini shuttles used to transport staff to and from work, and guests around the resort. In addition, Meadows contracts with local transportation companies to assist in peak day shuttling and guest movement. Add in the motorcoaches Meadows schedules and partially subsidizes for youth and adult programs and you have one of the most complex transportation systems in the state! 

Meadow is one of the only commercial operations taking independent actions to mitigate traffic issues on highway 35 and 26. Through these actions we are doing everything we can to assure that our guests will always be able to enjoy the mountain. 

In anticipation of those bluebird powder days when everyone wants to head to the mountain, Mt. Hood Meadows will continue its remote shuttle park and ride it began last season. When the resort lots reach capacity, Meadows will shuttle from the west side at Welches Middle School (at mile marker 42 off of Highway 26) and the north side at Mt. Hood Country Store (right on highway 35). 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. 

But first, let's consider all the ways that we can reduce the amount of cars traveling to Meadows on these days to reduce the need for parking spaces. 

  • 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 TripCheck.com – 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 (800) 977-ODOT (6368).  Reports are available 24 hours/day.  Visit www.TripCheck.com for information on road and weather conditions, incidents and traffic delays.
  • Stay connected – sign up for parking lot updates at twitter.com/mhmlifts – 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 Middle School

Mt. Hood Meadows remote shuttle parking at Welches Middle 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

Mt. Hood Country Store

Mt. Hood Country Store remote parking

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 Corner

Mt. Hood Meadows is pursuing acquiring property just north of the Mt. Hood Country Store to provide more spaces for our Park & Ride. Local land owners and neighbors have expressed concerns and we are working with them, Hood River and State agencies to address the issue. We hope to have this location for our Park & Ride, but if not we will continue to shuttle from the Mt. Hood Country Store on peak days like last year.

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!