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Mt. Hood Climb – May 17th, 2012

05/18/2012

The first real close view of the mountain came on East 26 near Government Camp.

View of Mt. Hood from East 26 Mt. Hood Highway – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

We got a closer, breathtaking view of the South Side Climbing Route from the road, including Crater Rock (slightly left of center of the crater bowl).

Mt. Hood view from Government Camp – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Welcome to the beautiful and historic Timberline Lodge.

Timberline Lodge sign with Mt. Hood in background – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Many of you may recognize the beautiful and historic Timberline Lodge as the Overlook Hotel from the award winning Director Stanley Kubrick‘s film rendition of Stephen King‘s psychological horror thriller “The Shining” (one of legendary actor Jack Nicholson‘s finest performances). The outside aerial shots of the Overlook Hotel were Timberline Lodge, shot right here in Oregon.

Beautiful Historic Timberline Lodge used as the Overlook Hotel in the film “The Shining” – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

There is even a picture in the lobby…very..creepy…but cool.

The Shining poster in the historic Timberline Lodge lobby – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

The lodge itself was warm and inviting.

Beautiful and Historic Timberline Lodge – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Beautiful and Historic Timberline Lodge – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Timberline Lodge Oregon National Historic Landmark – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

The old lodge even had cool interior design decorative lights.

Timberline Lodge interior design decorative lights – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

And hand carved staircase posts that reinforced your feeling of the backcountry environment you were about to enter; here a spirited carving of an Owl.

Stair Post at Timberline Lodge – Hand Carved Owl – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Even the old fashioned door handles were iron clad and built to last.

Our accommodations were simple and comfortable.

Historic Timberline Lodge accommodations; simple and comfortable – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

That afternoon we drove down to the Ice Ax Grill and ate as much as possible to prepare for the climb. The one time when you don’t have to feel guilty about anything. I ate an entire 10″ pizza!

Ice Ax Grill Sign – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Back at the lodge there was also an amazing view of Mt. Jefferson, another classic Oregon mountain.

Mt. Jefferson from Timberline Lodge Oregon – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

My long time climbing partner James Garrigus and I were inspired by the Alpine history and the setting. We were ready to climb!

Our night started at 1:30am to take the Snow Cat up to the top of the Palmer Ski Lift .

Timberline Lodge Snow Cat – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

The forecast was partly cloudy with temperatures around 24, with a westerly wind 18-22 mph, and gusts as high as 29mph.

It was a cold and windy night!

Windy and cold in the AM, Joel Bornzin and James Garrigus on Mt. Hood – Picture taken by Todd Glew

On the morning climb we got a good clear shot of Illumination Rock.

Illumination Rock – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

It was a very steep snow climb until around 6AM we made the Hogsback.

James Garrigus taking a rest break at the Hogsback, Mt. Hood – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

View looking back down the Hogsback towards the Lodge.

Looking Down the Hogsback View to Timberline Lodge – Mt. Hood – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

There are active volcanic fumaroles along the route and near the Hogsback. They smell very bad of sulfur (like rotten eggs).

Active Fumarole on Mt. Hood – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Joel Bornzin on the Hogsback Mt. Hood – Picture taken by James Garrigus

The condition and size of the Bergschrund at the top of the Hogsback were not ideal for climbing the Pearly Gates route so we opted for The Old Chute.

The Old Chute Route on Mt. Hood – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

The sun was just coming up and the majestic beauty of the mountain was on full display.

Mt. Hood Cliffs View in the Morning from the Hogsback – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

We climbed hard through The Old Chute variation and made the summit ridge.

Mt. Hood Summit Ridge – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

The ridge led us directly to the top!

We made the summit around 7AM. James and I were both so overwhelmed with the moment that we actually forgot to look at the exact time we made the summit!

James Garrigus and Joel Bornzin on the Summit of Mt. Hood 05.17.2012 – Picture taken by Todd Glew

Joel Bornzin on the Summit of Mt. Hood 05.17.2012 – Picture taken by James Garrigus

Of course I had to take a Bornzin family banner with me (Hi Mom and Dad and Keith!)

The Bornzin Family Banner on the Summit of Mt. Hood!

And as you guys know I love my job! I carried an M16-14ZER (designed by Legendary Knifemaker Kit Carson of Vine Grove, Kentucky) all the way to the top!

Some might say that’s a big knife to take up there. I might say when you are in the remote backcountry, you definitely want a big, hearty blade with you in case something goes down.

CRKT Knives on the Summit of Mt. Hood

The summit views were simply amazing. I was at a complete loss for words.

Mt. Hood Summit View – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Mt. Hood Summit View – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin – You can actually see Timberline Lodge and parking lot (bottom left).

After much celebration we started back down the mountain.

Joel Bornzin Coming Back Down the South Side Route Mt. Hood 05.17.2012. Picture taken by James Garrigus.

Coming Down Mt. Hood South Side Route – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Joel Bornzin Coming Back Down the South Side Route 05.17.2012. Picture taken by James Garrigus.

Looking back up the South Side Route on Mt. Hood –

Looking Up the South Side Route on Mt. Hood – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

Here is a great South Side route description from the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office

Mt. Hood South Side Route Description

Mt. Hood South Side Route Description provided by the Clackamas Country Sheriff’s Office.

Here is another great photo that I found online for perspective, this was from an article in the Oregonian, not sure who took this picture. –

Good Perspective Shot of Route.

To the summit and safe return! The lodge had this waiting for us when we got back!

Timberline Lodge Fireplace Mt. Hood – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

We kicked back and watched the sunset on this beautiful mountain.

Sunset on Mt. Hood – Picture taken by Joel Bornzin

A very special thank you goes to Todd Glew of Timberline Mountain Guides for helping us reach the top and safely return. Todd was a complete professional, a bit eccentric in the best ways, and clearly demonstrated to our team that our personal safety was at the top of his mind on the mountain. Thank you Todd! We would definitely recommend going with Timberline Mountain Guide services if you are interested in climbing in the cascades!

10 Comments leave one →
  1. jennifer permalink
    05/20/2012 5:12 am

    Awesome!

  2. Anna Brands Schep permalink
    05/22/2012 8:07 pm

    Beautiful!

    • 05/22/2012 10:56 pm

      Thank you Anna, it was overwhelming. I was at a loss for words just how beautiful it is up there! JB

  3. P Brady permalink
    05/22/2012 10:42 pm

    Great photos and so happy you shared your climb..I feel like I was along on the rope.
    Great job, Joel, Pat

    • 05/22/2012 10:57 pm

      Thank you Pat! It was so awesome, I am so fortunate to be able to have had the experience. So beautiful up there, thank you for the nice comment! JB

  4. 05/23/2012 3:54 pm

    Hey Joel,

    Very impressive. I have spent a few nights at the lodge, but not one moment at the summit.
    Quite a feat – and you have lived to tell about it.

    All the best,

    Brian Kent

  5. Gail permalink
    05/26/2012 7:48 pm

    What a wonderful experience and thank you for sharing the beautiful visuals with us.
    Keep climbing – be safe. Love Bob and Gail M

  6. Don Conner permalink
    06/07/2012 4:55 pm

    Congratulations Joel. One down many to go!
    Don & Karen Conner

  7. Jan Edwards permalink
    10/23/2012 7:02 pm

    Hey Joel, do you remember me, Jan Edwards? Wondering what happened to you. Looks like you’re doing great. Hi to your parents. Take care, you were always a favorite of mine.

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