Pete Alport Photography


I grew up in Portland. I went to four high schools, but mainly lived in the West Hills and downtown area. The West Hills are notorious for getting snow while other areas in the Portland metro area receive rain.

This is two days after Christmas and I was incredibly excited to shoot the snow from the West Hills area. As a kid we did wild things with the snow, many of which I don’t care to tell here. With that said I have one innocent story: my friend Sam and I had a Radio Flyer on one snowy day. Sam is a wild person, much like me and in many ways. He said to me, “let’s take the sled from the top of Council Crest and see if we can make it down to NW 23rd avenue. I was doubtful of the idea, but hopped on anyway. We picked up speed quickly, hitting dry areas from time to time. He was on on top, so I had a bird’s eye view of the ground. Sparks would fly underneath us when we hit the dry spots. When there was snow, we must have been going 30-35mph for most of the journey.

I knew the Suicide bridge was going to come up and it begins to get flat there. I wondered if we would have to get off the sled and walk. Sam is crazy and he to knew the area well. The roads are very curvy up to this point and in order to carry the flats of the bridge we had to have a ton of speed to make it through. Sam didn’t hesitate to generate as much speed as possible (no foot drags through the corners leading into the bridge). I have no idea how much speed we had at this point, but we made it across the flats into another hill leading into the busy road of Burnside st.

We made it across the flats and headed down the hill towards Burnside. At this point I knew Sam was all in, committed to making it to NW 23rd Avenue. We blew through the lights on Burnside and luckily no cars killed us, making it to the destination 1200 vertical feet below Council Crest.

Portland snows, they are rare, but when they happen they can be magic.