Bennett Pass Sno Park has a lot to offer, and located on the east side Mount Hood off of Highway 35 it is open to hiking, snowshoeing, cross-country skiing, backcountry skiing, snowmobiling, and skijoring. Find great views of Mount Hood on a clear day, and a lengthy trail with multiple distance options and side trails to explore. The main trail, which follows Bennett Pass Road, is about 5 to 10 miles round trip, but there are smaller side trails to explore to make a trip longer.
Generally, most people choose the 5-mile round-trip option; the snow deepens throughout the season and becomes dangerous beyond 5 miles. There are higher risks of avalanche and large snowbanks the deeper into the hike. It is only recommmended that experienced travelers continue past this point. Depending on the snow pack, it is best to snowmobile earlier in the winter as there can be avalanche hazards later in the winter. Depending on the area, backcountry skiers can find good runs through the trees with varying elevations. Be aware of avalanche danger as with all winter travel.
Note: There is a toilet and a garbage can at the trailhead. The parking lot is off of the offramp to Mount Hood Meadows. When its parking lot fills, Mount Hood Meadows staff will block traffic to divert cars to another area. Kindly let the staff know that you are using the Bennett Pass Sno Park to pass by. The parking lot has room for about 30 vehicles.
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.