Capturing the sun rise at Rocky Butte, 22 June 2021

As I’ve said ad nauseum on this blog, I am not a morning person. My schedule is more a “stay up for Late Night With David Letterman if it was still on”1 that I cultivated in the later ’80s. (What can I say? There wasn’t much quirky/interesting television then, and the internet was just a gleam in Al Gore’s eye.) It’s usually several hours after sunrise when I bother to rise. I don’t remember the last time I saw the phenomenon of our local star breaking above the horizon. The last time I would catch it on a regular-ish basis would be around Winter Solstice when I had to be at work by 8 am. (That is if it wasn’t cloudy!)

So watching a sun rise is special for me, reserved for special occasions. Tuesday June 22nd was one.

Emee was flying out to New York to visit family and friends. Her flight from Portland was 6 am,2 so I drove her to the airport so she didn’t have to deal with the spotty transit at that hour or have to hail a cab/Uber. This meant getting up at 4:30 AM, an unheard-of rising hour for me. It was a burden that I do for someone I love.

I dropped her off a little after 5. I high-tailed it to Rocky Butte, the closest high-point. Rocky Butte offers an almost 360 degree panorama of the city, Columbia River and Gorge, and the Cascade Range, so it’s a great spot to watch the sun rise. I got there just about 5:30 am. Technically the sun rose this morning at 5:21, but because it has to rise “behind” the mountains, the observed sunrise is usually a few minutes after. Sure enough, the sun was just peeking from the Cascades.

I brought my Minolta SR-T 101, still loaded with Kodak Portra 160 from our trip to Leach Botanical Gardens, along with a tripod. I quickly set up the tripod and fired away a bunch of shots.

It was a great time to be up on Rocky Butte. I’ve been here several times in the late or wee early hours and have observed a few sunrises here. There were a couple other people up there as well. I’m sure as the day goes on there’ll be more folks, and a good amount present to watch the sun set. But it’s special to be up here at first light.

For photos from the sunrise, see the dynamic flickr album below. Or, click here.

Sunrise, Rocky Butte. 22 June 2021

1 Note I said Late Night with David Letterman, not The Late Show with David Letterman.

2 Okay, if you want to get technical, her flight from PDX was to Sea-Tac where she’d then catch her NY bound leg.

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