Saturday, February 28, 2009

Wauna Point

While I was tempted to stay home and work on projects, I jumped at the chance to go hiking with the Adventurous Young Mazamas in the Columbia River Gorge.  The wind at our gathering point was daunting, but we thew caution to the wind and headed west to the trailhead.  Our goal was Wanua Point, on the Oregon side of the gorge.  Typically this hike is done as an out and back, but the hike leader made this a more interesting loop by following an abandoned trail up a steep forested ridge. 
Having a blast ascending the trail less travelled...

As we ascended there were views of the Bridge of the Gods and Mt Adams.  This portion of the trail was the highlight for me.  Up on Tanner Butte we found Wauna Point and descended down a steep snow slope.

...and then descending down to Wauna Point.

At this point there was a good 6 to 8 inches of snow at our feet.  We carefully made our way out to the Diving Board, which has a dizzying, commanding view of Bonneville Dam and the surrounding Columbia River Gorge.  We were surprised how little wind there was out on the point.

Out on Wauna Point aka The Diving Board.  Swimming trunks are not recommended.  Kevin Clark photo.

After lunch we hiked back up to Tanner Butte and sought out the Tanner Butte trail.  The hike leader had done his homework as his GPS lead us to a set of footprints heading in the right direction.  We did it!  We descended down past several waterfalls back towards the trailhead.  Since we had made such good time, we hiked down the Gorge Trail to Eagle Creek and returned via the Tooth Rock Viaduct. 

We really lucked out with the wind.  Returning home I read reports from fellow Mazamas getting blown about at Table Mountain and Devil's Rest.

Returning home I cleaned up and then biked out to Mago Hunt Theater at the University of Portland.  There I joined some friends at saw the play Fuddy Meers.

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