Yocum Ridge, Revisited

Lightning strikes were forecasted on Mt. Adams again, so we headed to Mt. Hood this weekend in search of a hike with exposure and views but also with tree coverage in case a storm hit.  We decided to hike up to Yocum Ridge again and got a reminder of just how much up, up, up that hike involves.  Although it was cloudy, the views were spectacular.  And the little rain we did get came after we were hunkered down in the tent, playing cards and settling in for the night.  The sunrise the following morning was gorgeous.  Even though we backpack almost every weekend in the summer, I don't think I'll ever get over how amazing this part of the world is.


Killen Creek

The threat of storms on Mt. Adams last weekend meant we had to choose a backpacking destination that provided some coverage if we wanted to visit the mountain.  Sunrise Camp, a spot on Mt. Adams where we'd planned on going before hearing the forecast, is completely exposed and will have to wait until we've got a clear weekend.  So Barry did some searching and found a nearby hike that sounded like it would meet our needs - Killen Creek.  I was on-board with getting out of town and backpacking, but I'll admit I had my doubts about the trip.  It was a longer car ride than we'd anticipated, I got good and car sick on the gravel roads, and it was pretty overcast when we arrived.  Although it didn't clear up for most of the weekend and we did get sprinkled on a bit, it turned out to be a great trip.  Barry found the perfect little campsite at the base of a waterfall in a beautiful meadow.  From there we poked around and found the prettiest little lake with views of Mt. Rainier and Goat Rocks.  On our hike back the following day, we took a steep detour up to High Camp where we climbed around on snow fields and gaped at the blue ribbons of the Cascade Range around us.  We're packing up now for this weekend's adventure and while it again looks like there may be rain, I've got no doubts about this one.


New TLE and New at TLE

I'm so happy for the good folks at Tender Loving Empire who are opening their third location (less than a year after opening their second spot, on SE Hawthorne).  They are a really nice group of people doing really cool things with locally made goods and music here in Portland.  They've recently announced plans to open their next location on NW 23rd Avenue in mid-August.  And just like the two sweet locations they've already got, you'll be able to find sulu-design jewelry at the new northwest one, too.  Here's the first delivery for the new shop:


Since the Start of Summer Part III

(over the dark ridge line to the right in the photo above
you can see a sliver of a lake... that's our destination)

Determined to make the most of an extra night of backpacking (thank you, Fourth of July!) we trekked out just east of Mount Hood to Badger Creek Wilderness.  There were gorgeous views of Mount Hood and several other peaks in the Cascade Range near the start of our hike at Lookout Mountain.  A sometimes gnarly, sometimes nerve-wracking trail followed.  We took it for miles and miles until we found a spot next to what looked at the time like the most beautiful creek ever.  We set up camp, soaked our tired feet in the cold water, and rested up for the following day.  When morning came, we quickly make our way to Badger Lake where we splashed in the water and lounged on the rocks all day.  We spent the night there and had a fantastic morning (mornings, I'm realizing, are often my favorite part of our backpacking trips).  The early hours felt like autumn.  We got cozy with our coffee and watched fish jumping out of the lake.  Eventually we hiked out and caught one of the best views of Mount Hood we've ever seen.