Dean M. Chriss
Painted Hills, John Day Fossil Beds, Oregon

Painted Hills, John Day Fossil Beds, Oregon

(Click image to enlarge)

This photograph was captured between downpours during a several day period of rain in this normally arid region. The intense colors of this area are made richer and deeper by water saturating the soil's surface.

Three tiny and widely separated units of John Day Fossil Beds National Monument protect a total of just 14,000 acres of the unique five million acre John Day Basin. The basin is like nowhere else on the planet but the vast majority of it is occupied by ranches, farms, and resource extraction sites that are forever altering the landscape.