pct-pacific-crest-trail-snow-winter-oregon
Winter conditions are in effect for the PCT in Oregon.

With temps dropping, rain falling and snow beginning to blanket Oregon’s peaks and higher elevations, the 2016 PCT hiking season has come to a close. Some lower elevation areas may still be accessible for dayhikes and weekend outings. If venturing out in winter conditions:

  • Wear the proper apparel, including insulating layers and rain gear.
  • Carry your Ten Essentials, including extra food and a headlamp.
  • Know how to navigate in winter conditions.
  • Leave your hike itinerary with a friend or family member.

During the off-season, look for trail updates and information on PCT: Oregon’s Facebook and Twitter channels. You can also subscribe to PCT: Oregon’s blog feed (see sidebar) for winter updates. Weekly conditions updates will return in spring 2017. Happy winter!


Weather

Winter weather in the Northwest typically entails rain, fog, snow and cold temperatures. Sunny days do occur, and those are excellent days to get out for exploring Oregon’s winter wilderness areas. Be aware of the forecast for the area you’re planning to visit. Remember, weather can change quickly, so plan accordingly. Click on these locations for current daily and weekly forecasts at NOAA.

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Mt. Ashland
Fish Lake
Crater Lake

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Willamette Pass
Elk Lake Resort
Santiam Pass

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Frog Lake
Timberline Lodge
Cascade Locks
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Weekly weather updates will return to PCT: Oregon as the 2017 hiking season nears.


Sno-Parks

There are numerous Sno-Parks in Oregon’s National Forests, each offering a variety of winter activities. Some Sno-Parks have snowshoe and cross-country trails that utilize portions of the Pacific Crest Trail. You can find more information on Oregon’s winter activity offerings at the following locations.

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Rogue–Siskiyou Nat’l Forest
Mount Ashland Ski Area
Fremont–Winema Nat’l Forest

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Crater Lake Nat’l Park
Umpqua Nat’l Forest
Willamette Nat’l Forest

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Deschutes Nat’l Forest
Mount Hood Nat’l Forest
Timberline Ski Area
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Most Sno-Parks in Oregon require a Sno-Park Permit (click for info).


Trail/Road Closures

Most of the Pacific Crest Trail in Oregon is under snow and inaccessible during the winter months. Limited access is available at some Sno-Parks (see above). Most of the main highways remain open through the winter season, however chains and/or traction tires are required for many of the passes. Most smaller forest roads are not maintained through the winter months.

• Crater Lake National Park – The north entrance road and Rim Drive are closed. The southern entrance road is open, as is the Steel Visitor Center and Rim Village Cafe. All other park facilities and campgrounds are closed.

• Cascade Lakes Scenic Byway (OR-46) – Closed for the winter season. Closure in effect between Mount Bachelor ski area and the Willamette Pass Hwy (OR-58). Elk Lake resort can be accessed thru the winter via resort snowcat service.

• McKenzie Pass Hwy (OR-242) – Seasonal closure in effect from milepost 62 to 84, between the town of Sisters and US-126.

Check Oregon’s road conditions at ODOT.


Contributors

PCT: Oregon will be looking for Oregon hikers to help contribute trail condition information to this site for the summer 2017 hiking season. If you’re interested in helping out your fellow PCT hikers by sharing news and info on trail conditions in your area, please contact site admin here. Thank you!

The information on this page is collected from a variety of sources, including NOAA, PCTA, PCT Water and the U.S. Forest Service. For more information on PCT Conditions in Oregon CLICK HERE. This page will be updated on a weekly basis during the summer hiking season.

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