I hiked two more hikes this weekend! On Saturday, Hanne and I hiked the river loop at LaPine State Park, approximately 4 miles, easy trail.
LaPine State Park
And today I had a GREAT hike up Black Butte.
Black Butte from the highway
The trail is quite steep, and I e-mailed my friends asking if anyone wanted to hike it SLOWLY with me. (Last time I hiked it with someone who was MUCH faster and I was overheated and exhausted by the end). Jean and I had a great hike! We went uphill (1600 ft elevation gain) at a very slow pace, and downhill at a moderate pace. The views from the top were spectacular!
The hike up Black Butte, and my hike along the Metolius last week, reminded me of the Native American story of our volcanic mountains. From Black Butte, we could see much of Cascades Mountain range, including Mount Hood, and Mt Adams (which is across the border in Washington, over 150 miles away). So I am retelling the legend in my own words. This is a common story from several different tribes, including the Warm Springs and Klickitat.
A long time ago the mountains were alive. Coyote was really worried and ran to all the mountains. He told them that Mt Hood (Wy’East) and Mt St Adams (Pahto) were fighting over a beautiful woman, Mt St Helens (Loowit). The rival mountains threw huge rocks at each other and big flaming fireballs, and they were destroying the world by covering it with ash and throwing huge boulders. The other mountains agreed to come and stop the battle before the jealous lovers destroyed the world.
The mountains started out on the long journey. They are very large, and travel very slowly. Black Butte packed her woven bag with all her plants and seeds for food along the way. Her husband, Green Ridge, was a famous hunter. He carried a deer over his shoulders so they would have good meat.
It was long and hard distance for these huge mountains to travel. Black Butte stopped because she was so tired, and so sweaty from the hard exercise. Green Ridge lay on his side next to her, and complained that she was going too slowly.
Green Ridge is the ridge in the background behind Deb
This made her cry and sweat even more. Her tears and sweat became the Metolius River; that’s why it’s so clean and pure. It is the tears and sweat of a mountain.
While they argued and while she cried, she didn’t notice that the plants and seeds had fallen out of her bag. And while he pouted and complained at his wife, Green Ridge didn’t notice that the deer slipped away to hide in the forest. That’s why there are so many different plants and deer for our people to eat!
Coyote is very clever and sneaky of course. So while he waited for the mountains to arrive, he saw an opportunity when the two rivals were on the opposite side of the river – he broke the Bridge of the Gods that crossed the Columbia River. So Mt Hood and Mt Adams were separated and couldn’t fight any more. When Coyote told the other mountains what had happened, they each stopped their long march, right in a row. They are still here, all lined up from their journey.
Me at the top of Black Butte! Mountains in the background
The small dots are hikers on the trail
Broken Top and Middle and North Sisters from Black Butte