Monday, August 29, 2011

Mt. Hood

Due to the late snow lingering on the slopes of the high peaks here in Oregon, Bryan and I were able to sneak in a late season run up the southside ofMt. Hood this past weekend.  The weather forecast was nice and settled for the entire weekend so we opted to head out of town on Friday afternoon, and begin out climb in the early evening. The alpenglow was fantastic on the mountain as we headed up to about 9,500.  At around 11:00 PM we found a nice flat spot and settled into our bivy sacs for a short nap.
Around 3:00 AM we woke up and continued our climb to the top. One of the advantages of sleeping on the mountain is that it put us above of all of the other parties that left the parking lot at Timberline Lodge at midnight (which is what most people do when climbing the southside).
The final pitch to the summit is pretty steep and exposed but the faint light preceding dawn was inspiring us to get to the top in order to catch the sunrise from the summit.
We were not disappointed either! The views from the summit ridge of the rising sun were incredible.
And the views down to the Elliot Glacier weren't so bad either!! The cracks on the glacier are really big, and the low angle light made them look even more impressive!
We spent about twenty minutes on the summit by oursleves and then began our descent just as another party was making their way up. I'm glad we were first on top that morning.  The two black dots on the snow below us are the other folks coming up.
And one last look at the mountain after we made it back to the truck. Round trip with a nap on the mountain of about 14 hours. Great trip for sure!!

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Middle Sister Climb With Bryan

Well, after talking about for a while, Bryan and I finally got out into the mountains this summer for a climb up Middle Sister Mountain, in the Three Sisters Wilderness of central Oregon.  Three Julys ago I climbed South Sister with My friend Sarah, and last July I climbed North Sister with my buddy Mike, so I figured it was high time to complete the trio.
We met up in the town of Sisters, Oregon and hiked into the appropriately named Camp Lake on Saturday night, and set up our camp on the edge of the lake.  After a good night of sleep we set out for the top of Middle Sister via the southeast ridge. The climbing was pretty straight forward (although it ramped up a bit in a few spots) and the weather was flawless.
We topped out in the early afternoon and had the summit to ourselves. The views were fantastic! All of the major peaks of the Oregon and southern Washington Cascades were visible including Mt. Jefferson, Mt. Hood, Mt. St. Helens, Mt. Adams, and Mt. Rainier. And of course we had spectacular views of North and South Sister, and Broken Top as well.  The hike down was quick, due to about 3,000 feet of glissading. It was pretty warm when we made it back to camp so we cooled off with a swim in the lake. It was damn cold but it felt good to cool down! The hike out the next morning was nice and easy, and the beers at the end of the trail were good and cold. All in all a great trip.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Short Track Finale

Tonight was the final race of the Short Track XC mountain bike series here in Portland. The last race of the night, and the season, was a 10-person relay race contested between 25 different teams of riders. It was an absolute blast. Here is a shot of our team, with our Directuer Sportif, Aaron Adams with us!  Thanks to everyone who participated in the relay and everyone who raced during the short track season. Now we have a few weeks to rest, gain some fitness, and get ready for the cyclocross season.