Sunday, May 1, 2011

crater rock, mt hood

Yes, I am still alive. Finishing my thesis and a dying car put a bit of a dent into my adventures for several months, but alas, I have finished and am getting back out there! Most recently, I hit up Mt. Hood with my friend, Greg, on a snowshoeing trip to the Crater Rock/Hogsback area. The trip was 3 miles (one way) with a 4,000 foot elevation gain ending at 10,000ft. Therefore, although it's not long in distance, it's straight up the whole way at high altitudes. I have to admit, I was amazed at the effect of the altitude and vertical gain...climb 10 steps, stop to catch my breath, get pumped and ready to go, climb 10 steps, stop to catch my breath, get pumped and ready to go, repeat... This is the last stop before the ~11, 200ft summit...a.k.a. as far as we could go without rope skills and gear. 

We couldn't have asked for better weather! After getting above the clouds and wind, it was very sunny with nothing but pure blue skies, white terrain, and puffy clouds below.  We are both sporting pretty awesome sunburns, but the incredible views were totally worth it.

I really, really wanted to bring my DSLR on this trip, but decided that it wasn't worth the effort or weight.  Therefore, these pictures were supposed to be from my point and shoot, but I forgot to put my memory card back in!!! Thankfully, I remembered my trusty smart phone and snapped a few shots along the way...
beautiful wind-blown ice formations on the way up

worried about having blown out pictures (I couldn't see the screen because of the blinding sun), i tried putting my polarized sun glasses in front of the camera--made for a nice 70's feel...

looking up toward the destination. crater rock is on the left.

another climbing group with the ski lift in the background 

sulfur dioxide gases seeping from a fumarole at crater rock...mmmm

view looking down from crater rock. ski lift line is below.

greg on the journey back down

me sporting my new trekking poles (thanks, mom!). the hogsback is the ridge behind me to the right.

much larger fumarole behind crater rock....stinky, stinky...    
this sight was also a bit unnerving because as you rounded the corner of crater rock, the ice and snow were broken up and melting from this guy.  

illumination i love thee.

greg and illumination rock