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Bonney Butte

From Oregon Hikers Field Guide

Mt. Hood from Bonney Butte (pdxgene)
Raptor counters on Bonney Butte (bobcat)


From the Bonney Butte Lookout site, there are views back to Badger Butte and down to the White River valley, Mount Jefferson, Broken Top, and the Three Sisters. Lodgepole pines, subalpine firs, and western white pines form a scattered forest on the ridge. There is a panel detailing the history of the Bonney Butte Lookout (deactivated 1964). The lookout site is not the highest point on the ridge: that lies a little to the north, concealed on a more densely forested section of the crest, at 5,737 feet.

The best time to visit Bonney Butte is in early fall. On September and October weekends, master birders volunteering for HawkWatch International will be doing their annual raptor count. A range of birds of prey, from golden eagles, vultures, and red-tailed hawks to smaller Cooper's and sharp-shinned hawks may be taking advantage of ridgetop updrafts to wind their way south using the long ridgelines to the east of Mount Hood as a pathway. The banding of raptors who come down to live pigeon lures is done from a hide up and over a hump in the ridge. They are caught using mist nets and sometimes a naturalist will bring back a bird that has been banded for observers at the lookout site to examine.

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bobcat (creator)

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