Ski jumping history includes Portland

Oregon once had jumping hills on Mt. Hood
By Cliff Pfenning,

Once upon a time, ski jumping showed itself in Oregon. In fact, it showed up, of all places, the former Multnomah Stadium - now PGE Park. Back in the days when Portlanders were being cajoled into voting for the funds to build Memorial Coliseum as well as the Oregon Zoo, ski jumpers flew before a packed crowd - thanks to snow imported from Mt. Hood.

A reported 200 tons of snow, produced by four large ice-making machines, allowed for the event to take place during the 1953 Rose Festival. The Cascade Ski Club produced the event to promote skiing on Mt. Hood. As many as 40,000 spectators witnessed the event, which also included slalom skiing.

The temporary ramp erected in Portland was one of numerous promotions around the U.S. in the 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s. Ski jump ramps showed up at Soldier Field in Chicago, the Los Angeles Coliseum, even Dodger Stadium in 1963.

Ski jumping in Oregon began in January 1929 on what is now the Cooper Spur ski area. Clubs from Oregon and Seattle competed against one another, according to historic records maintained by the Cascade Ski Club. The club eventually built runs for competitors at four different skill levels.