While staying at the Wilson Ranches B&B near Fossil, OR we spent a few days visiting the very interesting and wide-spread units of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument. On a somewhat stormy day, thankfully turning to mostly sun breaks, we journeyed to the Sheep Rock Unit. The Unit is subdivided into the Mascall Formation Overlook, Picture Gorge, the James Cant Historical Ranch, the Thomas Condon Paleontology Center, Blue Basin, Cathedral Rock and the Foree District.
After visiting the Mascall Formation Overlook and driving back through the Picture Gorge, we stopped at the Paleontology Center. Like everything in the National Monument, the Center was top-notch. To be truthful, we could have spent most of the day in the large facility. The exhibits were many and varied, focusing on geology and fossils. It was way too much to learn in one visit.
Next stop was the James Cant Historical Ranch. There was a nice trail leading to the John Day River that passed by the barn and a vintage fruit orchard. The inside of the old ranch house was interesting too, maintained consistent with its furnishings from the early 20th century.