Powell Butte

Powell Butte is an extinct volcanic cinder cone here in Portland. Hey, Mom! What’s that mean?

Mom: It’s a Plio-Pleistocene cinder cone of the Boring Lavas. Like one of your favorite out-door dog parks-Mount Tabor. There’s 4 of these cinder cones in Portland. 

Me: What’s Plio-Pleistocene? (That’s one of those big words I don’t understand.)

Mom: That means it was blowing up 5 million years ago. 

Me: Oh. I guess we aren’t going to be blown to cinders?

Mom: Right–we are just going to take a hike up it. It’s not very far.

When we got to the top of this little hill, we found a walnut orchard. Those were some pretty old trees–planted in the late 1800’s. They haven’t started leafing out yet–I wonder if there are squirrels that live there? They sure like walnuts!Wow! When we were up on the top, you can see all these big mountains! This is Mount Hood to the east. Isn’t it pretty? All that snow! Did you know you can ski up there in the summer sometimes? And to the northwest, we could see Mount St. Helen’s! It blew up in 1980, but it didn’t blow its top like some volcanoes you see on teevee. It blew sideways–and killed a bunch of people. Someday we’ll go there and I can tell you more about it! Mom says it’s really amazing. I think it might be scary, but she said it’s gone to sleep.

There is this place on the top of our hill where we could see 4 of the big volcanic mountains in the Cascade Range as well as a whole bunch of smaller mountains. We took a little rest here while Mom was taking pictures. There was a woman sitting on a bench and wondered if Toby was part wolf. That’s because his face is white. Mom said he was just old and his muzzle had just turned white–like Mom!

We could just see Mount Jefferson, way to the south, but it was a little hazy and Mom couldn’t take a photo. But we could see just the tippy top of Mount Adams. It’s that white place above the snow-capped range to the right of the tree. Looks like a cloud, doesn’t it? There are clouds up there, but that’s it! Another big one!! But it hasn’t blown up in a long, long time. Over 100,000 years ago. That’s even older than Mom!

That was a pretty nice walk! There were lots of people and little people (I’m not too sure about them) and horses! This is really how far away Mount St. Helen’s and Adams are. Mom said we aren’t going to climb them. Pshew……Pee Ess: Mom said I should tell you about the Kurgo contraption she bought for the car. She moved the zip-line down to the connectors on the shoulder harnesses and it worked pretty good! I couldn’t be a bobble-head dog though……