Home Back Issues June 2011 Mount Hood's unique economy

Mount Hood's unique economy

| Print |  Email
Articles - June 2011
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Article Index
Mount Hood's unique economy
Page 2
Page 3
Page 4
Page 5
Page 6
Page 7
Page 8
Mount Hood facts
Mount Hood tImeline

By Jon Bell

Two prominent threads have run through John Ingersoll’s life and helped shape who he is today.

The first: summer camp. A Pennsylvania native, Ingersoll has fond memories of summer stints at Camp Kon-O-Kwee, a small, traditional summer camp along the banks of Connoquenessing Creek in western Pennsylvania.

The second: Mount Hood.

Ingersoll first came upon Oregon’s signature mountain during a work sabbatical in 1983. Smitten, he stayed in Oregon, became a certified ski instructor and in 1985 wove those two main threads together by helping to start the National Alpine Ski Camp, a summer ski camp that still operates on Mount 0611_MountainEcon_01Hood today. He took it a step farther in 1989 when he co-founded one of the mountain’s premier summer snowboard camps, High Cascade Snowboard Camp in Government Camp. Since then — and despite a four-season break from the camp after he sold it to footwear giant Vans Inc. — Ingersoll has primarily made his living on Mount Hood.

“It’s just good work,” says Ingersoll, 57, who along with several partners bought High Cascade back from Vans in 2005. “We do good work up here, as most of the camps do. The kids love being up here. It’s pretty rewarding to be around it.”

Today, Hood’s handful of renowned snowboard camps — unique from others across the country because they offer winter terrain in the middle of summer — are big business around the mountain. Windells Camp near Brightwood draws about 1,400 campers every summer and thousands more throughout the year; High Cascade’s six summer sessions bring in close to 1,400 as well. Throw in Mt. Hood Summer Ski Camp and a few other smaller operations, and Ingersoll estimates the yearly revenue from the camps, including tuition and money spent by campers locally, probably ranges from $15 million to $20 million.

“The summer camps are the bread and butter,” Ingersoll says. “It’s a big economic boom.”

The camps are also just one piece of the larger economy that has risen on and around the mountain in the 150 years or so since Samuel Barlow began charging wagons $5 for passage along his namesake road over the mountain and Nathanial Coe planted the first fruit trees in the Hood River Valley. Today, Hood and its surrounding forest is a massive magnet for tourism and recreation; more than 4.5 million people visit the Mount Hood National Forest every year to ski, climb, camp or even just grab a bite to eat at Timberline Lodge.

 



 

More Articles

Growing a mobility cluster

News
Friday, October 31, 2014
0414 bikes bd2f6052BY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

Why are there so few transportation startups in Portland?  The city’s leadership in bike, transit and pedestrian transportation has been well-documented.  But that was then — when government and nonprofits paved the way for a new, less auto centric way of life.


Read more...

Revenge Forestry

November/December 2014
Tuesday, October 14, 2014
BY JONATHAN FROCHTZWAJG

A flare-up in the Elliott Forest raises questions about détente in Oregon’s timber wars.


Read more...

October surprise

News
Sunday, October 12, 2014
roundup-logo-thumb-14BY LINDA BAKER

Cylvia Hayes, tabloid vs. watchdog journalism and the looming threat of a Cascadia earthquake.


Read more...

Healthcare pullback

News
Thursday, November 20, 2014
112014-boehnercare-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | OB CONTRIBUTOR

Each month for Oregon Business, we assess factors that are shaping current capital market activity—and what they mean to investors. Here we take a look at two major developments regarding possible rollbacks of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).


Read more...

Knight Vision

October 2014
Thursday, September 25, 2014
BY VIVIAN MCINERNY

Travis Knight wants to release a movie a year. Can he pull it off?


Read more...

Two Sides of the Coin

Contributed Blogs
Friday, September 26, 2014
0926 iphone6-thumbBY JASON NORRIS | GUEST BLOGGER

This post focuses on the recent release of the new Apple iPhone as well as Alibaba's IPO, the largest U.S. IPO in history.


Read more...

Innovation: a critique

News
Wednesday, October 08, 2014
1008 innovation thumbBY LINDA BAKER | OB EDITOR

A Design Week panel discussion raises questions about how innovative we really are.


Read more...
Oregon Business magazinetitle-sponsored-links-02
SPONSORED LINKS