Fast-hike Spence Butte

To keep up the endurance gained last week on Rogue River (post), a ‘fast-hike’ the full length of Ridgeline Tr (Spring Bvld to Blanton) and topping Spencer Butte twice. Hit the trail around 6:30 carrying lightly packed NorthFace 20L pack and for first time this season, wearing Topo trail runners, intending to do the out / up / up / back without stopping as fast as feasible.

To the top first time

Getting going it was light enough to capture the full green explosions in the undergrowth, and getting atop Baldy in first 30 minute showed how unstable the air was. One view back over the city caught a weird industrial cloud rising into the sky – odd. From the top of Spencer, the fog and clouds were all.

At the top second time

By the second top segment, the sun was poking through, the clouds separating and vultures soaring looking for lunch. Close lookers will see hilltop snow on near-by foothills (rain / snow has been plentiful this last week).

After several days of deluge, birds needed to feed recent hatchlings … they were about everywhere and making voices heard. They allowed the camera closer than normal. The two highlights were the flock of snow geese flying in the sun … they would turn as a flock and flash white / black in the sunlight and then disappear behind clouds – a light show of highest degree – another party and I just stood and watched them (a bit far away). The sharp-shinned hawk posed for pics I have yet to witness from a wild raptor. Turkeys were everywhere even gobbling loudly.

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