Newton Clark Moraine (Ridge Between) Backcountry Ski

Mount Hood Wilderness

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Newton Clark Moraine (Ridge Between) Backcountry Ski

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  • The trailhead to access the Newton Clark Moraine.- Newton Clark Moraine (Ridge Between) Backcountry Ski
  • The first half-mile follows a wide road.- Newton Clark Moraine (Ridge Between) Backcountry Ski
  • The slightly sketchy one-log crossing across Clark Creek.- Newton Clark Moraine (Ridge Between) Backcountry Ski
  • The trail follows Clark Creek for about a half-mile.- Newton Clark Moraine (Ridge Between) Backcountry Ski
  • Looking for a drop in on the Newton Clark Moraine.- Newton Clark Moraine (Ridge Between) Backcountry Ski
  • Ready for turns on the Newton Clark Moraine.- Newton Clark Moraine (Ridge Between) Backcountry Ski
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Overview + Weather
Pros: 
Close to town. Easy to find. Good terrain. Great views.
Cons: 
Sketchy creek crossing near the beginning of the approach.
Region:
Mt. Hood + Clackamas River Area, OR
Day-Use/Parking Pass Required:
Sno-Park Parking Permit
Vertical Drop: 
750.00 ft (228.60 m)
Total Distance: 
6.00 mi (9.66 km)
Trailhead Elev.: 
4,540 ft (1,384 m)

Current Local Weather

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Today

Light snow (under 1 in.) until afternoon.
35°F
28°

Fri

Snow (1–3 in.) throughout the day.
32°F
26°

Sat

Mixed precipitation until evening, starting again overnight.
35°F
28°

Sun

Mixed precipitation (1–2 in. of snow) until afternoon, starting again in the evening.
36°F
30°

Mon

Mixed precipitation in the morning and evening.
37°F
25°

Tue

Clear throughout the day.
38°F
23°

Wed

Clear throughout the day.
38°F
22°
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Adventure Description

Adventure Description

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The Newton Clark Moraine, commonly known as the Ridge Between by backcountry skiers, is a massive medial moraine running between Clark and Newton Creeks, just to the east of Mount Hood Meadows ski area. This almost 3-mile-long gravely ridge offers beautiful open slopes and grand vistas, and it is easily accessible from the Hood River Meadows  parking lot/snowpark.

The first half-mile follows a wide, gentle road. Where the road ends the trail crosses Newton Creek via a fairly narrow log, which is possibly the most dangerous part of the whole approach. After crossing Newton Creek, the trail follows the creek for a short distance before climbing steeply to the crest of the ridge. Follow the ridge crest until the trees thin out at around 5,900 feet. From here there are stellar views of Mount Hood, Gnarl Ridge, and Bennett Pass to the south. The route continues up for approximately another 1.5 miles, offering skiable slopes to both sides. One bonus of this area is that it offers both open slopes and more protected, treed slopes. As always, remember to check avalanche conditions and to practice safe avalanche awareness at all times. 

Backcountry Safety

Winter backcountry adventures can be dangerous outdoor activities that pose significant risks as conditions affecting safety (i.e. weather, snowpack stability, avalanche hazard) are constantly changing. Prior to engaging in these activities each individual should get the proper training to make safe decisions and be equipped to use avalanche safety resources and tools. Please visit our Backcountry Skiing and Avalanche Safety post to learn more.

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Location + Directions

Location + Directions

Nearby Camping + Lodging

(55 within a 30 mile radius)

Nearby Adventures

(144 within a 30 mile radius)

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