Window on the Apocalypse
Mt. Hood from Jonsrud Viewpoint・Sandy・Oregon・USA
After getting skunked at Sherrard Point where Hood had decided to play coy behind a thick cumulus veil, we took backroads through scenic farmland backed by the partially hidden peak en route to a delicious dinner at the Tollgate Inn in charming little Sandy. After the nice meal, we doubled back a mile along Bluff Road to Jonsrud Viewpoint, a ridiculously accessible roadside turnout perched high above the Sandy River with a direct view of Hood's western face. We weren't expecting much from her given the relative disappointment earlier in the day, but just before the sun succumbed to the horizon, she came out of hiding and put on a show. Turns out, she was just saving her best for last. Earlier forecasts had called for evening lightning storms in the Columbia River Gorge due north of the mountain, and sure enough out of the corner of my eye I caught a flash of light just to her right. We and another photographer watched the lightning storm track north across the mountain and beyond, while the setting sun gave Mt. Hood and the parting clouds a subtle yet dramatic rosé blush. The sporadic lightning eluded our cameras, but it was still a memorable end to a great day of hiking.