J O U R N A L / B L O G


Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Total Eclipse, Oregon

The drama of a sun being dimmed to direct visibility by the smoke of wildfires has a kind of subtle sublimity when those fires and resulting perpetual sunsets are close by and not contained-- but this past weekend I felt safe despite occupying a ridge between three or four of them, since they were well known and closed off. On the pacific crest trail I remember walking through radical double-sunrise graced barbecues and little was as sensually impressive. But yesterday was August 21st, 2017, and from that ridge I had the privilege of seeing a total solar eclipse. I only wish Justine was there with me! I will have more to post about my visit to her, and to Zion National Park and other parts of the Southwest.

I went to Three Fingered Jack because I remembered this dramatic view from 2008 on a section hike through the area, and because the summit of Mt. Jefferson became in-accessible due to the fires. 

It turned out to be a wonderful spot from which to witness a series of brooding ballets of smoke and mountaintops, and then, of course... an astronomical alignment of me and many others on the earth and the two celestial bodies that occupy our skies and instigate our cycles of life and dream.

Western Pasqueflower seed heads at smokey sunset.
A lake catching a glint of the sun like fire.
Three Fingered Jack from that same viewpoint on the PCT.
Sun descending into the burn.
Someone else there to watch the eclipse, looking out at Mt. Jefferson.
The smoke level was sometimes like an ocean obscuring everything around us, often even much more than this.
Sunset from my campsite on the ridge, looking at Three Fingered Jack.
Mt. Jefferson on the morning of the eclipse, crossed by the smoke from a fire burning on its flank.
At the moment of totality, looking towards the south at Mt. Washington and the Sisters wilderness, where another fire was burning.
At the moment of totality.
After totality, I took this shot of the crescent sun through my smaller mirror-less camera using the solar eclipse glasses everyone was sporting for the event which allowed you to look at the sun and see it as this brightness.

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