Old Cascades

The Cascade Range is really two mountain ranges in one. The familiar High Cascades are a younger range of soaring, ice-covered volcanoes, including peaks like Jefferson, Hood, Shasta, St. Helens and Rainier. But the High Cascades owe their elevation to the the Old Cascades, the ancient, deeply eroded foothills that form the foundation of the high peaks.

Most of the Old Cascade peaks are 4,000-5,000 feet in elevation, just reaching timberline, compared to the 10,000-14,000 foot summits of the High Cascades, which rise high above the trees. From the upper slopes of Park Ridge, the maze of Old Cascade peaks to the west can be seen, including the rugged Bull of the Woods backcountry, which is the blue ridge of peaks on the horizon in this view.

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All images are ©Tom Kloster 2001, and may not be used without permission