As many of you may be aware, Mt. Bachelor is in the process of implementing a new uphill travel policy within the boundaries of the resort. As of this writing, details of that policy are still being finalized, so we’ll refrain from making any specific comments at this time.
As an organization, the Bend Backcountry Alliance has no official position on these changes. While we obviously want to protect accessible touring terrain whenever possible, we feel that this situation is a bit out of the scope of our efforts. For one thing, we’re focused on undeveloped public land and, quite honestly, we have our hands full with this mission alone. Second, ensuring the safety of all users is one of our core tenets. Mt. Bachelor’s decision to change its policy is based on safety concerns. The use of winch cats, avalanche control work (including the acquisition of an Avalauncher), and highly variable grooming schedules and patterns all contribute to Bachelor’s safety considerations.
Until Mt. Bachelor implements its new policy, the only uphill travel currently allowed on the Mountain is access to the Cone using the far edge of the Leeway run. To stay abreast of policy updates, visit the uphill access page on Mt. Bachelor’s site. You’ll also find updates on their Facebook page.
Mt. Bachelor can be a great asset in our overall mission to protect accessible terrain near Bend. We strongly encourage everyone to help set a good example for all backcountry skiers and riders. If you’d like to voice your opinion on Bachelor’s policy, please share your input with the Mountain directly.
As always, if you want to improve accessible terrain options in the area, help us support non-motorized protection for Tumalo and the Dutchman Flat area by encouraging your friends to support Bend Backcountry Alliance, and by submitting comments when we post an Action Alert.