This group of climbers took a break at the Mt. Hood Lookout Station in July, 1935. They managed to reach the summit without Goretex, Polarfleece, or any other synthetic fibers. The steel cables attest to the winds that buffet the summit.
If you can identify any of the climbers, please post a comment.
UPDATE: The Hood River News has shown me a photo taken minutes earlier of what is reported to be the first wedding atop Mt. Hood. The photograph was provided by the nephew of Betty (Van Arsdale) Patton, the bride. The bride and groom were part of the annual American Legion climb up Mt. Hood, and they got a certificate to prove it. According to the letter, this was the fifteenth annual climb, hosted by the Legion "for the sole purpose of affording the general public an opportunity to safely climb Mt. Hood, the most beautiful mountain in America."
With the advent of synthetic fibers, Oregon lost one of its major industries.
I suspect the above gentlemen are wearing lots of wool.
l.e. on 5th April 2011 @ 7:14am
Actually - wool is making a real comeback. New weaving techniques and combinations with synthetics have produced fabric with the warmth of wool without any "scratchiness" at all. In the last 3 years all of my socks, even for summer wear have been switched to these fabrics which contain 50% or more wool. Far more comfortable and durable than cotton or 100% synthetics in every weather condition and climate!
steve s on 5th April 2011 @ 8:02am
Some info forwarded by a reader: The cabin was built with lumber and nails carried up the mountain by people paid $5 per day. It was manned from 1915 to 1933 as a fire lookout. (Source: "Mt. Hood- A Complete History" by Jack Grauer, 1975)
arthur on 5th April 2011 @ 7:59pm
The wood for the Mt. Hood fire look out was carried to the summit by Lige Coleman on a "Trapper Nelson" back pack board. He was the "prime contractor" for the Forest Service. His partner was Mark Weygandt, a mountain guide from Hood River. The Mt. Hood Museum in Govt. Camp has a good history on the Look Out.
Bill Pattison on 6th April 2011 @ 9:54pm
I notice that this has the older surveyed elevation of Mt. Hood (11,225 ft. as opposed to the modern 11,239 ft measurement). Or was this the exact elevation of the lookout cabin?
Ben Mitchell on 8th April 2011 @ 11:40am
I Would like to correct and ammend my comments of April 6th above. Prior to 1915, the Forest Service placed the newly developed "fire finder on all of the major mountain summits in the northwest for the purpose of trangulating the location of "smokes". Elijah Coalman was employed to construct a 6X6 14 foot long timber on the summit of Mt. Hood to mount the instrument along with a platform for the spotter. The 15 X 15', windowless look out building was built in 1915 and was manned until 1933. Weather and lack of visibility rendered it impactical. The debris you see today is all that is left of the structure. Can you guess the weight of the 14 foot timber that Lige carried from Crater Rock to the summit? (Source: Fred H, McNeil. "McNeil"s Mount Hood" )
Bill Pattison April 9,2011
Bill Pattison on 9th April 2011 @ 2:44pm
Not sure I should take up space here guessing the weight of the timber. It would have been tight grained old growth so heavier than today's 4x4.
An awkward 130 lbs?
l.e. on 9th April 2011 @ 10:26pm
I am researching a new book on Coalman and his life. Any info/pics out there would be greatly appreciated. He was...put simply.....an amazing man in all aspects. Great pic. Thanks for sharing.
Mike on 17th May 2011 @ 10:56am
An interesting thing about some of the people employed as lookouts on top. They sold hot tea to climbers. I can verify this information.
Visualize yourself up there alone when one of those violent good old Mt. Hood blilzzards hit. That little cabin, held onto that mountain top with cable must have really rocked and rolled.
Charlott on 10th June 2011 @ 6:09am
Way back people did not have the hundreds of dollars worth of climbing equipment that they do now. The first time my aunt climbed Mt. Hood in 1929 she had 3 sweaters on and said she was still cold. Many younger climbers wore "Jodhopers" as they must have been the style. Those high top boots were not really thick and feet got pretty cold.
Black grease paint on the face was common.....snow, ice and sun are a terrible combination for mountain climbers. Many just swabbed it on uner their eyes. I have seen pictures of my own father with a totally back greased face. Sorry never asked him exactly what it was or how he got it off.....
Charlott on 28th June 2011 @ 8:45am
I have a nice collection of photos from one of these climbs!!!
Ie on 26th July 2011 @ 10:43pm
This looks like my Grandpa's climbing party on Mt Hood. The web address I supplied has another picture.
Guy on 3rd October 2011 @ 9:37pm
I have a wonderful picture of my aunt when she climbed in 1929, her first of many climbs with my father and uncle. In fact it was the 1929 American Legion climb.
Charlott on 21st October 2011 @ 7:07am
There was anoher very early man who served at fire look out on top of Mt. Hood. He was not one who wanted to be noticed, like some. A humble man, Clem Blakney has at leat 135 credited climbs of Mt. Hood, but he actually did more. He served as the look out on top sometime arund 1917-1919, not certain of dates. I have recently seen some of the photos that he took in that time frame. He took the only known, photo, at least that I have ever seen of the inside of the look out. He was a personal family friend.
Charlott on 30th October 2011 @ 5:56pm
Charlott-I would very much like to see those photos. Please let me know if I can arrange to see them. I am in Portland.
Mike on 29th February 2012 @ 1:31pm
Reading an article about Hood River County Forest Lookouts. In 1933: "High-climbing rats, pack-rats who made their way 11,253 feet above sea level, are the bane of Lookout Ray Lewis' existence on top of Mt Hood.
The rodents, seldom known to venture more than 7,000 feet up, have devoured the supplies in Lewis' lookout cabin buried in the deep winter's snows. He had to send to civilization for rat poison.
Members of the biological survey are studying the pack rats, which weigh half a pound more than wharf or city rats and have slightly bushy tails." (Chillicothe Constitution-Tribune - Missouri)
l.e. on 2nd April 2012 @ 8:34pm
I have a small paragraph from a family source that describes a climb of Mt. Hood that my husband's great uncle made in July of 1935, as follows:
"Frank Hoffman and the climb of Mt. Hood in July 14, 1935 at the age of 62 years. Frank (father of Eddie, Zillie, Clarence, Raymond, twins Ethel and Esther) climbed Mt. Hood. 100 people made the climb, including 30 women. 7 days before the climb it snowed 4 inches. They started 4 am. on Jul 14 1935. On the way over the rocks and the snow, above the timber line little flowers blooming. About half way up is a shack built in case of storms. They painted their faces at 7:20 am to keep from getting sun blistered. It was a 45 degree climb at one point. Stakes and ropes were used to hold back with. Among the group were a Minister, a man, and lady. They were married on top of Mt. Hood, of which Frank Hoffman was a witness, he being the oldest to make the climb. He stood up for the man. They were married at 11:40 am. At the top of Mt. Hood is a House which is cabled down to keep from blowing away. It is used in case of storms. The group were on their way down at 12:15 pm. of which they used the stakes and rope to hold back with. There were 20 people tied to one Captain. Elevation of Mt. Hood is 11,245 feet.
I believe the picture you have may show Frank Hoffman, possibly the one with the painted face.
Nancy Claussen on 25th April 2020 @ 3:49pm