The Middle Sister as seen from the Northwest.
The view of the Three Sisters from Bend, Oregon is incredible. These mountains are a rarity in the volcanic world, being that they are so close together. The summits of the Three Sisters span a distance of just five miles and have over fifteen glaciers. Some years you can ski well into July. In the late 1800s they were known as Faith, Hope and Charity, beginning from the north. It makes sense that the North Sisters was named Faith.
The Summits of these mountains have been drawing me in for years. The Middle Sister sits at 10,047 ft. This will be the last ski for the spring. The snow is melting fast.
Jamie and I drove from Bend to Sisters, up and over McKenzie Pass, through the 2,600 year old, sixty-five square mile lava flow to the Obsidian Trailhead at Frog Camp to begin our journey up.
The Dee Wright Observatory built in the 1930s
The Lava Flow
We got to the trailhead around 5pm with plans of sleeping in the back of the truck and getting started around 3am for our 14 mile hike. The mosquitos changed our minds, so we packed up and hurried out of there, hiked about 3 miles to a good bivy spot and slept outside under a tree. Got up around 4am and headed up to the snow.
The summit of the Middle Sister and the Renfrew Glacier.
We skinned up the expanses of snowfields between the Renfrew and Collier Glaciers to the Hayden/Renfrew pass. From there we hiked with our skis on our packs up the north ridge to the summit.
Jamie with the summit in view
View of Mt. Washington, Three Fingered Jack, Jefferson and Hood.
Me on the Summit!
Jamie on the Summit!
We hung out on the top for a little while and enjoyed the views and the sun.
I tried to fly my kite, but the wind wasn't blowing hard enough. Can't complain about that.
So we skied.
Me skiing off the summit with the North Sister in the background
About midway down. Some cool lava pinnacles.
Jamie carving it up on the lower slopes
We reached the snow line, switched up our gear, took a break next to a stream, then hiked back to our bivy site and reloaded again for the few miles back to the truck.
The Middle Sister on the left from our bivy site
Back to the car by 1pm. Another beautiful day in the mountains and our 17th Volcano!