Columbia Plateau and Deschutes River Valley – June

Ok, i’m upping the ante a bit here with this post.  My focus has always been eco-regions.  It’s a stretch for most, which is why i really haven’t been in depth with this viewpoint.  It is in my educational background and i am re-directing this blog along these lines.  The bulk of this work for Oregon was summarized and condensed in the late 80’s through the mid ’90’s.  Here is the summation of these efforts.  Really cool stuff that when i was an undergrad at OSU was a pipe dream.

Anyway — In an effort to study the unique eco-region of the Columbia Plateau i made another trip to the Deschutes river and the wind-mill plateau.  If you’ve ever traveled Gordon Ridge you’d understand that last comment.

All areas have a Level III eco-region of 10 (Columbia Plateau).  The Deschutes River Valley is designated 10k (Deschutes and John Day River Canyons) and the plateau is 10c (Umatilla Plateau) at Level IV.  Right along the Columbia we have a really unique Level IV region – 10e, the Pleistocene Lake Basins. These run from the Dalles out to Milton-Freewater.  I plan a couple of trips out to Hermiston and Umatilla to study this region a bit.

Anyway, the wind was really ripping all day.  It was hard to hear the birds that actually braved the winds.  There were pockets of refuge and the swallows on the river didn’t seem to mind even if the wind ripped spray off the rapids.

Perhaps given the wind and cooler temperatures, i didn’t see any Odonates and only a couple of Cabbage Whites.  Too bad, these critters are proving slow to join the photo library.

The wildflowers were probably past their prime but a few were still in bloom.

eBird Report 1 Deschutes River SP

eBird Report 2 Gordon Ridge

eBird Report 3 Moro