Monthly Archives: March 2020

It’s Trivia Tuesday, 3-31-2020

Sheep Rock And John Day River On An Overcast DayThe Rocks Of Sheep Rock

According to the NPS, Sheep Rock (that pointy-peaked mountain), in the Sheep Rock Unit of John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, gets its name from the bighorn sheep that once populated its slopes. At the top of Sheep Rock is the Picture Gorge Basalt. That brown line across the middle part of the mountain is the Picture Gorge Ignimbrite (pumice and volcanic tuff). This ignimbrite makes a nice marker bed by which geologists can place and date geologic events. The green soils you see in the second image are colored by the mineral celadonite. Celadonite comes from the French word for “sea green.”

And now you know.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

 

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Filed under 5DS, Canon, Geology, John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, National Monuments, Oregon, Photography, Travel, Trivia Tuesday

Angular Unconformity Along OR Hwy 207 To Mitchell

Angular Unconformity

I love geology. I went to school to study it. So when I travel, I like to read about the geology of the places I visit and the roads I travel. In hindsight, I wish, now, that I’d have bought and looked through the Roadside Geology of Oregon, by Marli B. Miller *before* rather than after I’d driven to John Day Fossil Beds National Monument. At least, then, I would have been able to follow the mile markers and understood what I was seeing.

Anyway, I’d stopped here because I happened to turn my head to look at the scenery right when my car was passing by these awesomly-colored outcroppings. Turns out, my inner geology radar must have been working intuitively. What you see here is called an angular “unconformity.” An angular unconformity is – in easy terms – when you see tilted beds (the green and reddish outcropping of beds) overlain by straight beds (the red-brown lines of columnar basalts you see above. It shows there is a gap in the geologic time record. So, if you are following a series of formations along a geographic distance, you might suddenly see that one formation or sediment layer of that formation is totally missing from the order of deposition, and all you see is this contact line dividing angular tilting beds from straight layers above. Any of this make sense? If not, then just admire the pretty landscape.

This image was captured using my new Sony Alpha a7r IV and 24-105mm lens. I am loving this camera!

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under Geology, HDR, Landscape, Oregon, Photography, Sony Alpha a7r IV, Travel

It’s Fun Fact Friday, 3-27-2020!

Painted Hills GeologyPainted Hill Badlands And Sutton MountainsRed BedTwo Red Beds

It’s Fun Fact Friday! Here’s some interesting facts for you if you happen to visit John Day Fossil Beds National Monument in Oregon.

In the first photo, that’s the first hill you’ll see that will get your attention as you drive past the sign welcoming you to the Painted Hills Unit. The top of this hill is capped with a volcanic tuff called the Picture Gorge Ignimbrite. This tuff is 28.7 MILLION years old.

The other images show other sides to this same hill as you drive further along the gravel road into the Painted Hills Unit. The red and tan soils are called paleosols, and the red paleosols are indicative of a warmer, wet, tropical to subtropical climate, while the tan soils represent a cooler, drier, more temperate climate.

Those blue-ish shadowed mountains in the background of a couple of the images are the Sutton Mountains.

And now you know!

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under Fun Fact Friday, Geology, John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, National Parks, Oregon, Photography, Travel

It’s Take A Trail Thursday

The View Along The Story In Stone TrailThe Leaf Hill TrailThe View UptrailThe Path To The PalisadesWhere Will That Boardwalk Take You

Ok, so how about instead of Throwback Thursday, let’s make it “Take A Trail Thursday.”

Can you guess which trails these are? Hint: they are all from a national monument in Oregon.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, Landscape, National Parks, Oregon, Photography, Travel

Tour A National Park From The Comfort Of Your Couch

Enjoying The View At Bryce Point

Enjoying the view at Bryce Point in Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah

What do you do when you aren’t near a national park but you are dreaming of a park’s gorgeous landscape, amazing skies, and fresh air? You take a virtual tour!

Published yesterday is an article I wrote for the National Parks Traveler about virtual tours available online by the National Park Service, with lots of links for you to use and tours to take without ever leaving your home.

To read the article and use the links, click on the image above.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under National Parks, National Parks Traveler, Travel

When Smoke Gets In Your Eyes

A Forest Fire Sunrise Over Lake McDonald

A forest fire sunrise at Lake McDonald, Glacier National Park, in Montana

You’ve planned months or even a year ahead for that once-in-a-lifetime trip to a particular national park. Your arrival, however, may coincide with smoky landscapes from a forest fire, near or far. Don’t let that deter you from enjoying your stay and using your camera. My latest photography column published in the National Parks Traveler provides ideas to help you get WOW-worthy shots on even the haziest of days.

To read the article, click on the image above.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under Canon, Canon Lens, Glacier National Park MT, National Parks, National Parks Traveler, Photography, Photography In The National Parks, Travel

More National Park Campground And Facilities Closures

Late Afternoon Storm Clouds And Sunlight Over The Painted Hills

Afternoon storm clouds and sunlight over the Painted Hills Unit, John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, in Oregon

Hey folks, if you are considering a national park, national monument, national recreation area, national historic site visit anytime soon, you might want to check out the latest article in the National Parks Traveler, with a list of more campground and facilities closures.

To read the article, click on the image above.

Copyright Rebecca L. Latson, all rights reserved.

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Filed under John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, National Parks, National Parks Traveler, Photography, Travel