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This field trip guide describes a one-day loop from Portland eastward around Mount Hood and returning through the Columbia River Gorge. The purpose is to visit a SNOTEL (SNOwpack TELemetry) site to observe processes and instrumentation applied in automated snowpack data collection, as well as observe geomorphic features related to snowmelt in the western United States. Annual snow accumulation in the higher elevations in the western United States provides a critical source of water for irrigation, hydroelectric power generation, municipal water supplies, and recreation. Snowmelt, however, also can cause various hydrogeologic hazards, such as floods and debris flows.

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