The Mt Hood Golf Course – Nestled deep within the Salmon River Valley in the foothills of Mount Hood is situated one of Oregon first and most beautiful golf courses. Today it includes a resort with all of the luxuries and amenities needed for a restful and enjoyable day on the links or for an extended vacation and base for day trips to the iconic Mount Hood territory.
In 1928 Ralph Shattuck and George Waale envisioned a golf course in Billy Welch’s pasture. The original name was “The Mt Hood Golf Course”. They leased the land from Billy with an option to buy, where they built the first nine holes and made Welches the first Oregon golf resort. Today these first nine holes, named “The Original Nine”, are known as “Pinecone”. Shattuck and Waale operated the course until 1939, when Billy and Jennie Welch took back the land and the course. Billy Welch died in 1942, leaving Jennie to operate the business.
In 1944 Jennie sold the property to J. P. Lich and his wife Oberta. J.P. Lich sold the property to Leo Hueval. Leo Hueval struggled to pay the mortgage and the property returned to J.P. Lich, who then sold to Eugene and Peggy Bowman in 1948. The Bowman’s changed the name to “Bowman’s Golf Club”. The Bowman’s added an additional nine holes named “Thistle” on land cleared by J. P. Lich for that purpose, making it an 18 hole course. The Bowman’s operated the business until 1978.
In 1973 American Guaranty purchased land across the road from the course where they built a conference center, restaurant and additional rooms for lodging. In 1979 they bought out Bowman and consolidated the two businesses and named the operation “Rippling River Resort”. A third nine holes were added which was named “The Red Side” but is known today as “Foxglove” which, at the time, made the course the only 27 hole course in Oregon.
Ed and Janice Hopper bought the resort in 1989 and changed the name to “The Resort at The Mountain”. Ed Hopper had Scottish ancestry and introduced a Scottish theme throughout the resort. The Hoppers operated the resort until 2007 where it has gone through several owners and is now named the “Mt Hood Resort”.
The photos included with this story are all real photo postcards of the resort circa ~1950-1960 and are a part of my personal collection.
6 thoughts on “The History of The Mt Hood Golf Course”
Thank you for this history. We have lived off foxglove for 8 years.
It is nice to know all the background history.
I must say, we have been concerned about the future of the resort and the golf course. It has gone in disrepair the last couple of owners. My dream is for a new owners to pump some needed money to renovate. The overlook at Mallards is one of the most beautiful view around.
Very nice story. Thank you!
I, Steve Post, lived near Bowman’s golf course from 1967 to 1991. Kieth Bowman was my dad’s best friend. Dad was the only electrician in the Mt. Hood area at the time. He did a lot of work for the Bowman’s.
I owned my own Real Estate Office (Mountain County Realty) in Wemme from 1976 to 1982 and then sold it to Oregon Realty.
I once caddied for Gene Bowman in a
pro-am at Columbia Edgewater. Gene shot an 84 that day. He paid me $10! lol
I got Jack Nicklaus’ autograph that day.
I’ve played many rounds of golf at what I still call “Bowman’s”. My average score back then was around 85. But one day I scored a 41-35 for a 76. I had 3 birdies on the back 9, including the 224 yard par three 18th! Of which I rarely, if ever, parred. I hit a 4 iron to within 25’ and sunk the putt! My witnesses were my dad, Wes Post, and my college buddy, Denny Bonn. Denny did a cartwheel on the green when my putt dropped! lots of great memories in the Welches valley!
Side note: In college at OSU, Denny would introduce himself to co-Ed’s: “Hi, the names Bonn, Denny Bonn”. lol
But now, at my age, I can’t even hit my driver 224 yards! lol
Great story, one error, Bowman’s built the third nine before we sold the course to American guarantee
Thank you Gail. Noted. 🙂
I have been looking for this kind of info and photos regarding this course for a long time!
I love these photos.
I am wondering if there are prints showing the original course layout and progressive changes. I play there a few times a week. I remember so many years ago Pinecone 9 green where Thistle 1 Tee is or around now. Would appreciate any info.