Timberline Lodge isn’t the only handcrafted accommodation on the slopes of Mount Hood. Set 6,100 feet up, on the mountain’s remote northern verges, McNeil Point Shelter—a 1930s-era, stone-cobbled climber’s hut—provides an adventurous, slightly more rustic spot for a quick respite. Don’t expect room service. The tin roof reportedly leaks in the rain. But those views! Glaciers feel close enough to chip ice from, and fir-laden hills fan out to infinity. And that’s not to mention the trek in, one of the finest in the Northwest. Obtain a wilderness use permit (free at the trailhead) and ascend the Mazama Trail no. 625 (created by the eponymous mountaineering group). Pass through the charred remnants of 2011’s Dollar Lake Fire and emerge to a land of green meadows, alpine ponds, thickets of pink-mountain heather and bear grass, and tumbling, silt-white creeks. At the route’s junction with the famed Timberline Trail (3.7 miles), head left and look for a well-signed turnoff to McNeil Point. After a short climb, turn right (look for another sign) and continue along a creek and tundra-like expanses. After a rocky traverse, look for an unmarked side path to the shelter. Post-Hike Watering Hole: A surf-themed bar in a tiny mountain village? Trust us, it works. At Welches’ Wraptitude, sip on Boneyard IPA, Deschutes Twilight, or a Rainier while you toss horseshoes out back and wait for eats like the Hawaiian-style pulled pork and pear wrap.
Access: Mazama Trailhead, Road 1811; Northwest Forest Pass required
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