I flew up to Bremerton Washington near Bainbridge Island west of Seattle to visit a potential client on Friday. From my home base in Placerville California, the route to the northwest takes me up past a long chain of volcanoes, starting with Lassen Peak and Shasta, and ending (for me) with Mount Rainier. The volcanoes stood out more than usual this time because of the cloud deck that obscured everything but the volcanoes.
The cloud deck caused me to take the safe route up, west of the volcano chain and over the valleys of Oregon and Washington. I don’t do a lot of actual instrument flying (although I stay current), so the approach into Bremerton in the rain was exciting, and I’m always thankful that the runway seems to magically appear after each instrument approach. After a pleasant business meeting, I flew up through the cloud deck and soon the cloud layer broke up, so I veered east and flew over Mount Hood, where my teenage son is a camp counselor at a summer ski camp. I texted him to go out and look up, but it was too cloudy there at the camp and he couldn’t see me. I could have slipped under the clouds and buzzed the camp, but crashing in front of my son didn’t seem like a good idea.
I landed in Chiloquin Oregon for the night, where you can taxi your plane to a small parking ramp next to Highway 97 and a remote roadhouse where I had stale dinner and fresh pie. I camped next to the plane (the only one there), enjoyed a beautiful bike ride the next morning up the Sprague River, and was able to take off and be home by noon on Saturday.