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Steens Mountain: Freezing at the Desert

Steens Mountain looming over the Alvord Desert Area




Steen Mountains is just a few 100 yards from the Alvord Desert. But those few 100 yards involve a drop of 7-8,000 feet.  This panorama doesn’t show the vastness of the drop here, but the temperature of the desert below was over 95 degrees while on top of the mountain at night the temperature was in the 20’s.  There was a haze of smoke from distant fires that caused just enough mist in the valleys to shift the horizon blue.

Originally I had planned to shoot the desert and lake area which looks light tan (center right). But after driving to the top and scoping out the snow and the odd crags at the top, I thought this is my shot. 

I headed back down to go get lunch and saw a couple of the wild horses in the area and shot this one. (with a camera of course). When I came up later the mosquitoes were insane given the height and I had to soak myself in Deet and bundle up against the cold. I set the camera outside Jimmy after the shot was done and collected some great shots of the Milky Way from 10,000 feet.



2 thoughts on “Steens Mountain: Freezing at the Desert

  1. Steens is 5700’ above Alvord. 🙂

    1. Oppps my bad, someone told me that while I was there. It’s way higher than it looks in this image tho 🙂 And steeper too!

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