Shabbat Shalom—Mount Hood Hike

Shabbat shalom everyone wherever you are around the world!

Yesterday (Friday) I went for a ten mile day hike up onto the NW side of Oregon’s Mount Hood with some of my kids. Please enjoy some of the snapshots I took from that alpine adventure.

I invite you in joining me in praise and worship of Yehovah Elohim for giving us eyes to feast on such visual delicacies to be discovered in his glorious creation!

Mount Hood, Oregon’s tallest peak, from Lolo Pass Rd.

The Vista Ridge Trail. A few years ago, a forest fire devastated this side of the mountain. Now look at the beauty that has sprung out of the fire’s destruction as the earth is healing itself. This is our wonderful Elohim at work in his creation who gives us beauty out of the ashes (Isa 61:3)!

A blooming carpet of avalanche lilies in the midst of the burnt out trees standing like silent sentinels keeping watch over the forest. Yeshua said, “Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these” (Luke 12:27).

There is even a stark beauty to be found in the pattern of the skeletal remains of the forest fire and the trees that the wind storms have subsequently laid down. There is a beautiful blessing to be found in every adversity of life. All we need is the right mindset of a thankful heart to search for and to find that blessing in the midsts of life’s difficulties and then, once found,  to rejoice in it.

Even the holes in these ghoulish burned out tree snags are a blessing not only for their beauty, but for the wildlife habitat they create. We saw mountain blue birds nesting in some of these tree cavities.

We finally got above the forest fire area and were blessed with this specular view of Mount Hood!

Enjoying a high alpine lunch with my kids. In the front is Lucy, our oldest child and her husband Spencer. In the back are Kaleb and Jared. Hiking ten miles and gaining about 1,600 foot in elevation leaves one with a healthy appetite.

Kaleb beware! One should never drink untreated water in the mountains unless you know where it comes from…

In this case, Kaleb made a wise choice. This water is as pure as you can get on planet earth!

Tiny Dollar Lake was our final destination at just under 6,000 foot elevation. It is the highest alpine lake on Mount Hood. Kaleb stripped down to his shorts and ran down the snow bank and dove in for a quick plunge into the icy waters. It was a very quick dip! He jumped out almost as fast as he got in. It happened so fast that none of us had a chance to snap a photo of him. I’m proud of Kaleb for his adventuresome spirit.

Dollar Lake against the backdrop of majestic Mount Hood. Would have been a great spot to spend Shabbat had we been camping there.


I will lift up mine eyes unto the mountains…

I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills/mountains, from whence cometh my help. My help cometh from Yehovah, which made heaven and earth. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved: he that keepeth thee will not slumber. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep. Yehovah is thy keeper: Yehovah is thy shade upon thy right hand. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night. Yehovah shall preserve thee from all evil: he shall preserve thy soul. Yehovah shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore. (Psalm 121:1–8)

Just returned from my first backpack trip of the season into the Cascade Mountains near Mount Hood that are about one-and-a-half hours from my house. Accompanying me were several of my boys. We hiked into a small mountain lake where we hung out swimming, having Bible studies, praying and hiking. I also taught them some wilderness survival and bushcraft skills.

I was up early every morning with my Bible in hand watching the sun come up over the hills shining on the lake and our camp. it’s always amazing how it’s easier to hear the voice of YHVH when we get away from the physical and spiritual noise of the city. The awesome splendor of his creation literally surrounds and envelops a person, so that all one can do is think about him and revel in the beauty of his nature and lift up one’s hands in quiet and reverent praise to the of the one who created it all! Soli deo gloria!!!

One evening around the campfire, Kaleb led us in a Bible study on Revelation 21. As a result of that, after a sunrise swim the next morning in the lake’s pristine waters, I then let the Ruach wash me in the water of the Word of Elohim, and I was blessed with some wonderful insightful revelations from that chapter, which I will share with you in the near future.

Please enjoy these photos.

Sunrise over the lake

Sunset over the lake

Jared, Kaleb and Ryan with Bibles in hand as we study the word of Elohim around the campfire

A panoramic view of our campsite at lake’s edge with Natan cooking dinner in our camp kitchen

I’m never happier than when I’m away from the city and up in Yehovah’s creation. My family has been trekking these same mountains for more than 100 years!

Natan dangling his feet over a vertical fifty foot cliff with Mount Hood in the background

May our love for Yeshua and his word burning be like hot coals! When I take my kids into the mountains, this is the passion I try to impart in them: love for YHVH’s creation and his Word!