The Timberline Lodge, 5,960 feet up on the side of 11,000’ Mt. Hood, was built during the 1930s as part of the Works Progress Administration program to provide employment during the depression. To keep costs down native materials such as rocks from the mountain and lumber from the forests were used and recycled materials were incorporated in the ironwork, newel posts and hooked rugs. 80% of the costs were for wages. Some of the workers were artists but the rest learned on the job.
The details and craftsmanship are amazing. It’s possible to spend hours just looking around at all of the creative touches. A short film is shown off of the lower lobby which also has a historic exhibit and a ranger station where you can join a free tour of the building.
The building is accessible but getting around can be confusing. Accessible parking spots are located in the main parking lot. Look for the wheelchair sign at the ground level door and follow the passageway to the elevator that goes to the lower lobby. Another elevator accesses main lobby. I think that the restaurants and bars are accessible but you may need extra assistance to access elevators or back entrances.
Mt. Hood is the home of the Palmer Snowfield which retains its snow year round making summer skiing and snowboarding possible so expect busy parking lots. RVs are directed to the lower parking lot. It’s an uphill trek to the lodge. Part of this can be avoided by taking the elevator in the day lodge up to the Timberline Lodge level. If you have a small RV and a handicapped hang tag you can drive to the upper level and park close to the accessible entrance.