Sightseeing around Ontario, OR

August 24 – 25, 2017

The next couple days I need to do some chores such as laundry, shopping, cleaning.  So I take care of these things and also do some sightseeing in the area.

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Malheur Butte

This area was an important stop for travelers along the Oregon Trail.  Just west of Ontario is the town of Vale.  This was the location of the ford across the Malheur River.  There are quite a few historic buildings in the town.  Among them is the Rhinehart Stone House built in 1872.  This was a wayside stop for travelers until the early 1900s and is now a museum with artifacts and history of that time period.  I seem to have lost all the photos I took when I was in Vale 😦

Just south of Vale is Keeney Pass and a section of the Oregon Trail where the wagon tracks can still be seen.  The BLM has an interpretive site and short walking trail here.

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Pygmy Short Horned Lizard

Back in Ontario, I visited the Four Rivers Cultural Center.  This museum features the cultures and history of the peoples who lived and settled in this area, including the native americans, europeans, japanese and basques.

On Friday I drive up Owyhee Canyon to the Owyhee Dam.  It was a pretty drive with beautiful colors and rock formations.  I haven’t done any hiking as the temps have been in the high 90s and this is all open plains county, no trees. Just too hot!

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Owyhee River

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Owyhee Dam

The Owyhee Dam was completed in 1932.  At 417 feet, it was the highest dam at the time of completion.  It served as a prototype for the construction of the Hoover Dam on the Colorado River.

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Owyhee Reservoir just above the dam

I have truly enjoyed my first visit to the state of Oregon.  Tomorrow, on to Idaho.

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