03 February 2016

[pdx] Mount Hood, Piercing the Clouds

There are, I've said (I think I have), benefits to working graveyard. You're going home when everyone else is going in to work. You see things most other people can't afford the time to pay attention to. Today was a … peak, you might say … experience there.

I've rhapsodized about Rossi Farms before. I've never attended an event or done much more than drive by the place, but it's this small working farm, embedded like a jewel in a part of Portland that was once suburban, hemmed in on all sized by housing, shopping, and Parkrose High School, with NE Sandy Blvd running just a few blocks north and I-84 and NE Fremont Street just a block or two south. They're always growing produce. And, by keeping the area for about 10 blocks to the east of NE 122nd Avenue a clear sight-line, have given me some of the most wonderful views of my favorite mountain, Oregon's tallest … and thereupon created a public service that's not mine alone. Bless 'em.

When I began the sally home, I saw Mount Hood, mighty Wy'East, backlit by clouds that were starting to be that sort of moltenl-lava warm red and orange mix that sometimes happens. As I passed through downtown Parkrose heading east 102nd and Sandy, though, I saw the shadow beaming out over the buildings, and I knew where my next stop was.

When I shoot Hood from 122nd, I usually park just south of NE Skidmore Street. There's a convenient place to pull over and park for just a short time, right by the Rossi Farms sign. And I expected something awesome today when I saw that shadow, and boy …

… was I ever not disappointed.

Mount Hood's offical summit elevation is 11,249 feet ASL, or 3,429 metres. It's not the most massive Cascade volcano, but where it doesn't look Shasta or Rainier in the eye, it much more than makes up for in style and poise.

And when that tipped peak is just above the cloud deck, which is maybe at 11,000 feet, then you get this. And it's awesome.

I stayed out there for about twenty minutes, firing off shots.  And when I left there I felt electrified, like I was lucky, very lucky, to be in this place and time …

… specifically, out 122nd way. Home.

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