Meadows Opening 06

Photographer Alex Mertz pops more than flashes.

All photos and words: Gary Tyler McLeod

Opening day at Mt. Hood Meadows had nothing in common with opening day at Mammoth. The biggest difference was the powder snow. This made for a much different atmosphere. It was like being inside of a white room, in the air, outside, on Mt. Hood, snowboarding. Going to the mountain in Oregon is a refreshing experience. I’ve heard it described as “mellow” more times than I can count on both gloves, but actually snowboarding on the mountain can be a whole other story. Mt. Hood Meadows has some very unique, and diverse terrain that has played host to more than it’s share of snowboarding’s history. On this very day, one could find the likes of Scotty Wittlake, Shane Flood, and other mythical figures linking powder turns. Check out the photos below and if you don’t want to be left out, visit for more information on how you can ride powder at Mt. Hood Meadows.

Meadows Opening 01

"Hell yeah, it's gonna be sunny." -Nick Dirks

Meadows Opening 02

This is only the sign, not the actual snowboard resort.

Meadows Opening 03

Alex Mertz, James Mustico, and Nick Dirks thinking ahead. Wrong toe Nick.

Meadows Opening 04

Arriving at the lift line, we ran into Rob Aragon of Exit Real World, and he had just received some real world powder snow in his eye.

Meadows Opening 07

TJ Schneider was in the Realm. Here, he documents Ridge Run, the most famous of runs at Mt. Hood Meadows. Check out for the video, which probably has some idiot taking photos in the background.

Meadows Opening 05

Also satisfied with the conditions were Bryan Fox & Volcano Cones Founder Sally Janine.

Meadows Opening 08

James Mustico knows that Mt. Hood Meadows receives an average snowfall of 430" and his intuition tells him this season will bring above average snowfall. With everything taken into account, James carefully chose the best line down before it gets buried.


Nick Dirks doesn't care about statistics or his intuition. He doesn't care about anything.

Meadows Opening 10

Mt. Hood Meadows did go the extra mile to build a nice park for opening day, but we didn't need it. The color of their jibs this year is blue.

Meadows Opening 11

Speaking of blue (this is a tribute), Capita Team Player TJ Schneider, Capita Team Manager Blue Montgomery, and Capita Team Filmmaker Mark Dangler did not miss out.

Meadows Opening 12

Here is a photo of Alex Burton doing a backflip while Nick Dirks pees in the background. True story.

Meadows Opening 13

I give you esteemed local and expert conversationalist Cameron Weeg, who did not miss opening day for the world.

Meadows Opening 14

This photo of Alex Burton is infinitely freed from all bias or scrutiny. This was Mt. Hood Meadows Opening Day 2010.