My First Visit to Cottonwood Canyon State Park


The sagebrush, sand and basalt cliffs of the desert-steppe environment brought back many memories of youth.

Cottonwood Canyon is Oregon’s newest state park. It sits in a deep canyon of the John Day River.

The park’s 8,000-plus acres are now open open for hiking, fishing and exploring the interesting landscape.

The Pinnacles Trail follows the west side of the John Day River downstream for approximately 4 1/2 miles.

Not far from the trailhead, storm clouds began forming and soon thunder was heard to the east. It was clearly time to put on the rain coat and watch for lightning.

Thankfully the rain only lasted about 30 minutes before sun breaks began occurring.

The wildflowers, butterflies and the ever-changing lighting on the tall, basalt cliffs kept me entertained for the remainder of the four-hour outing.

A great place to visit. I will return soon.

Anise Swallowtail Butterfly

A somewhat faded Indra Swallowtail Butterfly

Trail cut into the cliffs

Trail cut into the cliffs

Butter-and-eggs (are they smiling?)

Butter-and-eggs (are they smiling?)

Blue Butterfly

Lupine Blue Butterfly (thanks for the identification Caitlin)

A painter capturing the beauty

A painter capturing the beauty

Basalt cliffs

Basalt cliffs

Thelypodium

Thelypody

Lost Corral Trail on east side of river

Lost Corral Trail on east side of river

Basalt cliffs

Basalt cliffs

Lots of Sagebrush along the trail

Lots of Sagebrush along the trail

 

 

Categories: Eastern Oregon OutingsTags: , , , ,

2 comments

  1. Thank your for sharing your photos

    Like

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