Sunday, May 16, 2010

the return to black butte

 three fingered jack from summit of black butte just before sunset

When I visited Black Butte a few weeks ago, I promised myself that I would be back soon for 3 things: 1) awesome camping at the top, 2) sunrise pictures and 3) to drink the Deschute's Black Butte Porter at the summit.  Thus, an attempt was made this weekend.
me packing some camping, camera, and drinking supplies

We arrived at the summit just before sunset to find howling winds and no shortage of clouds around us.  Needless-to-say, we quickly set up camp and made dinner while we still had some light.  After finishing up our dinner of ramen noodles and a cheese bagel, I tried to take some photos and noticed a few sheets of rain that appeared to be headed our way very quickly.  As we stood watching this fast-approaching weather, the sky lit up from lightening! Of course, the idea of camping on a mountain under a fire tower in lightening was a bit unnerving so we quickly ran for shelter of the tent and waited out the small storm.

After the rain blew over we stepped out of the tent to find the sky starting to clear. Within a matter of 30 minutes the winds died completely and the clouds dispersed to reveal a sky of sparking stars.  Mimicking this scene was a horizon of twinkling city lights from Bend and other nearby cities. We sat out until late in the evening admiring the scenery while finishing our summit beers. 

the shelter

approaching rain

enjoying a beverage while waiting for the rain to stop

We awoke the next morning at 5 to find a very overcast sky with slim to no chance of getting a good sunrise. I was a little bummed, but happy to have a few more hours of sleep.

About 3 hours later, the overcast sky cleared and the sun baking down on the tent woke us up. Why couldn't the weather have been like this at sunrise?!  Breakfast consisted of another bagel and an unbeatable view of Sisters. This was followed by a few goofy pictures prior heading back to the car before the other Sunday morning hikers made it to the top. Despite not accomplishing the goal of getting sunrise pictures, I still had a fantastic time.  Two out of three ain't bad. 

this is casey

of course, there's a jumping picture...casey's face is priceless