Welcome to Sarah Bettey Photography, featuring photos
from the Mt. Hood to Portland, Oregon areas and beyond

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Cloud Cap Sunset

Timing is everything, they say. While I was concentrating on capturing the moment that the sun disappeared behind the very lowest point of the north slopes of Mt Hood, I didn't notice that from my perspective at Cloud Cap Inn, I also was capturing the first signs of smoke from a wildfire that broke out, as seen in the lower right corner of this photograph. The next day I saw the story in the news. Now it is four days later, and the Dollar Lake Fire is at 1,660 acres and threatening the Inn, which I wrote about yesterday. This is the second time in 3 years that the Inn has been threatened by wildfire.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Cloud Cap Inn

Cloud Cap Inn was built in 1889 on the northeast shoulder of Mt Hood at the 6000 ft mark, and is the second oldest building in the country maintained by the Forest Service. (The oldest is Grey Towers outside Milford, Pa., the boyhood home of the first national forest chief, Gifford Pinchot, which was built in 1886).

Cloud Cap Inn was accessible back then from nearby Hood River via train, and then a long stagecoach ride up the side of the mountain. The excursion took 8 hours, which by car takes less than an hour these days. The Inn officially opened on Aug 3rd of that year, and was only allowed to operate 5 years during winter seasons due to the snowfall in the area, which sometimes exceeds 60 feet of accumulation.

Cloud Cap remained the main destination on the mountain until Timberline Lodge opened on the south side in 1937. Operating in spring and summer only, Cloud Cap Inn ran on and off until 1946. There was threat of tearing the building down in the 50's, but a Mt Hood based climbing club, the Crag Rats, saved the building and are taking care of it to this day. In 1974, it was placed on Oregon's list of historical places.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Gloomy Gorge

Signs of autumn are already appearing. The mornings the past few days have been foggy, cloudy and cold. It doesn't actually clear up until late afternoon. Away from the damp Columbia River Gorge (pictured), things are looking dry. Yesterday, I heard geese flying over my work. I am hoping this is just a short phase though. We were so cheated out of summer here in the pacific northwest. We deserve at least another month of good, warm summer weather!