How to camp in White River West Sno-Park
With our first Land Wander trip, Jason and I needed to film winter adventure footage, and at this time of year we could not resist heading up to my favorite part of Oregon – Mount Hood. There are a few options for snow camping, and we decided to try a location central to epic cross country skiing at White River and Tea Cup.
In order to get there, we picked up our campervan in Oregon City that we rented from the lovely people at GoCamp – her name was Van’essa. She included two beds and kitchenette that took care of all our needs. There was no bathroom, but the Sno-Park has a toilet that worked well for the both of us. Did I mention she drove like a dream?
The Mercedes 2500 is rear wheeled drive, it handles the snow quite well. Only once did we have trouble with traction, and that was in the morning waking up when there was a layer of ice on the snow coating everything in sight. Alas, we rocked the rig back and forth once and we were on our way. Driving up was a blast and maintained great traction through the entire trip!
Our first stop was Government Camp! We decided to grab a pint at Charley’s Mountain View Pub before wandering north to the delicious Taco Shoppe. After enjoying a marvelous hot chocolate spiked with our favorite add-ons, we couldn’t help meeting friendly locals who shared a lot of cheer only found in a mountain village.
White River West Sno-Park
Camping was as easy as pulling up to the site and turning on the furnace. Jason and I enjoyed a fire and the starry night sky before turning in for the evening to make dinner. Someone else left a fire burning on the snow, even though all fires should be in a fire pit. We met a few different people who shared tips about how to make the most of our time on the mountain.
Waking Up to Stunning Views
The mornings were absolutely stunning, with gorgeous views of Mount Hood as the sun crept up over the horizon. From the east, the sun started to magnificently illuminate the snow capped Mt. Hood to the west. Lucky for us, we were able to grill up bacon and coffee while soaking in the magnificent views!
After breakfast it was time to grab the skis and head up the mountain! Finally, what we had been waiting for, some adventure! Jason and I enjoyed switching back and forth across the snow covered stream. We enjoyed following the trail of show shoers, hikers and cross country skiers up the mountain.
A lot of families were sledding down the hills near the parking lot, as it was was full by 9:30 am. Parking near the trailhead allowed us to prepare all of our gear before people arrived – another great reason to camp on the mountain!