June 13, 2009 – Mt Bachelor/Cinder Cone

It’s hard to beat life living in Oregon in June! The snowpack is still decent and the trout fishing is starting to pick up. The prime window for both activities is just too short. Anyway, Todd and I headed out from work early to find a camping spot somewhere close to Mt. Bachelor on the Cascade Lakes Highway. Original plans to hit Tam McArthur Rim or Diamond Peak were thwarted due to weather and the Sisters Rodeo/Circus. So instead, we chose Mt. Bachelor, which has been closed for about a month. The weather didn’t look promising, with 70% showers forecast, and lightening and hail also likely. It’s been a really cloudy rainy June down here, making it difficult to get any quality turns in.

Enjoying my all time favorite beer

Camp was at Hosmer Lake, and we soon had a nice fire going and tarp set-up. It rained off and on. Here’s a photo of our objective from the south side taken from the Lake (we hit the north side)….

Bachelor’s southeast side

After a few beers and lots of bs by the fire, we hit the sack with a slight rain moving in. To our surprise, the next morning dawned clear. Here’s the view from a few feet away from the bivy sack….

Early morning sunrise

We headed up to the mountain, but soon turned around to get our poles which we had left to support out tarp. By 7:45 or so we were skinning up under the Pine Martin lift. Above the Pine, the clouds started building big time. Big boiling thunderheads and dark skies sent us down the mountain w/o hitting the summit and getting the goods in the Cirque Bowl. The turns were still nice, and we got 1500 feet of good riding in. We waited at the parking lot for a bit, but the weather didn’t subside.

Upon returning to camp, we made some more firewood. After making friends with several resident chipmunks, we headed to Lava Lake to get a few supplies. I needed to be home for some family stuff on Sunday, so I headed out at 2pm and went back to the mountain for another try. The weather was still menacing, but I was able to get up the Cinder Cone and make some turns. I literally ran up the mountain, hot footing it not wanting the weather to change or the lurking thunderhead to get me. I made it in time and the ride down was cream corn. Total vertical for the day was around 2200 feet. Here’s a shot from the top of the Cone showing the South Sister and Broken Top. I’m pretty sure there wasn’t anyone on the South Sister today because of the recent weather, but it still has some good lines on it.

The view from the Cone

Back at the parking lot, I celebrated with a Cinder Cone brew from Deschutes Brewing Company. On the way back to the valley, I had an hour or two to kill, so I fished a stretch of the Deschutes River upstream of Crane Prairie. It’s been awhile since I’ve fished up here and it was a good time. I used my little ultralight rod and reel and only lost a couple of lures. Here’s a pic of the stretch I fished….

Upper Deschutes Rainbow

I caught several small rainbows like this one that I threw back – they sure have pretty color to them…..

Upper Deschutes Rainbow

Overall it was a nice trip, given the unstable weather we’ve been having here in the PNW lately. I’m really looking forward to my next outing in the Oregon Cascades, and can’t wait until my little one is ready to tag along for at least the fishing portion of the trip!!!