Earlier this week I took advantage of a nice day and made the 90 minute trip down to Fort Rock in the Central Oregon high desert. I love rock formations so the long drive was well worth it. I had the added bonus of being the only person there for the roughly two hours I spent exploring this magnificent rock feature. So follow along as I wander through the rocks. 😀
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A look at my 1.5 mile round trip path through the semi-circular feature as made by me using Google Earth.
Fort Rock was once an island in a long ago dried up lake. It was also home to prehistoric humans some 10,000 years ago. I watched a show recently where they made some finds in caves nearby that might suggest humans were here earlier than once believed. Interesting stuff for sure.
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Right from the parking lot you are faced with the stone cliffs from one end of the semi-circle.
Across the way is the other end.
Here is a panorama trying to capture the whole view as I just begin my hike.
As I walk along the rock wall admiring the different textures of rock I stop to take a shot across the basin to where I will be going.
I was amazed at all the different layers and directions that the rocks seemed to flow. This reader board below gives a great explanation of how these rocks were formed.
As I continue on along the back wall I look out over the expanse of desert that was once a lake/marshlands. It must have been quite a different view for prehistoric humans. Probably a variety of trees, shrubs and wildlife that could never exist in this current desert environment.
Not to say there isn't some water here now. An obvious small rivulet where water has recently run.
Wind and rain are doing there best to break down the rocks. Here you can see a small crack that shows the sunlight on the other side.
A look back at where I came from.
As I got closer to the back wall I looked up and saw some somewhat precarious looking rocks above my head. Discretion being the better part of valor I decide to turn around and ...
make myself a little artificial sunrise complete with starburst. 😃
A look at the other side of the rock above. Very interesting the way this side of the rock looks like it was scooped out.
Some more of the unique rock formations.
A sampling of lichens. They are able to go dormant it arid conditions but will return to colorful life with the return of some moisture. Luckily for me it rained here recently. 😀
Evidence of recent rains.
I begin my descent down the far wall.
A look back to where I came from.
More evidence of running water here in the desert.
A panorama back across the basin to where I started my journey.
The other end of the semi-circle.
A shot from the outside looking back at the opposite end of the semi-circle.
While there seems to be evidence of raptors nesting in the cliffs I only saw one falcon in the distance and nothing moving around on the rocks.
A last look back at Fort Rock before starting the journey home. Just as I was leaving two cars showed up. I guess I couldn't have timed it any better. 😃
Please feel free to make comments or ask me any questions about this post.
Photos taken by me, @oldmans, with a Nikon D3300 and some Lightroom post processing.
Please visit Pinmapple to see the locations of some of my other posts.
Thanks for looking and enjoy your day!