Mt. Hood Meadows has added four midweek bonus days to the season and will use them to raise funds for the Hood River Crag Rats. Meadows' initial schedule saw daily operations ending April 16 before moving into a weekend to weekend schedule, but Meadows Chief Operating Officer Jake Bolland felt Meadows' could do more with these bonus days April 17 - 20.
“This has been a great season and we saw an opportunity to continue the stoke by turning these four midweek bonus days that we would normally not be operating, into a way to raise money for a very deserving volunteer organization,” Bolland explained. “We plan on raising $10,000 for the Crag Rats, by offering 500 - $20 lift tickets for guests to purchase online in advance, and redeem for a day on the mountain between April 17 and April 20. That's making the best use of our extended schedule, offering a great deal for our guests and raising funds for the Crag Rats."
While rescues of lost backcountry snow enthusiasts are higher profile, the Crag Rats average more than 30 rescue operations annually with many rescuing summer hikers or bikers who are injured or lost on Gorge-area trails.
The Crag Rats is the oldest Mountain Rescue organization in America, performing technical rescues on Mount Hood and surrounding areas. It is totally an all volunteer organization and performs essential services, organizing and conducting searches for those recreating throughout the Columbia River Gorge or on Mt. Hood who become lost or injured. The services are performed without any public funding, and will become even more important as outdoor recreating in the Gorge and on Mt. Hood increases in popularity. Their website CragRats.org has more information on the organization.
The special $20 lift ticket will be available online beginning Monday, April 10. There is a limit of 500 and the entire amount will be donated to the Crag Rats. The tickets can be redeemed for a 9 AM - 4 PM adult lift ticket between April 17 and 20 at Mt. Hood Meadows. Lifts expected include Mt. Hood Express, Cascade Express, Buttercup and the Ballroom Carpet during the bonus midweek days with the lift ticket costing $49 at the ski area those days.
Meadows end of season schedule will see daily operations through April 23, then Friday - Sunday April 28 - 30, and Friday and Saturday May 5 - 6. For current conditions and operational schedule visit our conditions page.