A Pacific Northwest Photography Blog

Alvord Desert - High Desert - Eastern OR

Some of the most stunningly beautiful views I’ve ever seen around the rural northwest, are on a nearly 60 miles stretch of dirt road from Fields, OR to State Route 78, Steens Highway which takes you back toward the town of Burns.

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Here just a few miles north of Fields, is the Alvord Desert,

a dry lake bed where some enthusiasts come to attempt land speed records.

An unofficial women’s world land speed record was set here in 1976 by Kitty O’Neil reaching a speed of 512 miles per hour.

The dry Alvord Lake bed is the very light blonde area to the right in my image.

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Fields is a very tiny community with a population of 86,

and has a two room school where an average of 15 to 20 students in K-8th grades study,

high school students are bused to another location for class.

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Driving north from Fields along the Fields-Denio Road,

a well maintained dirt and gravel road running between Burns, (112 miles NW, population 2,316)

and Denio NV, (22 miles SE, population 110).

Also, the dirt/gravel road passing over Steens Mountain from the tiny community of Frenchglen

(54 miles NW, population 89) drops down the mountain a mile or so outside Fields.

Driving the dirt/gravel road over this 9,736′ mountain felt magical.

:   :   :

The drive up through the Wild Horse Valley is honestly in my humble opinion,

some of the most beautiful rural, country I’ve ever seen, and I kept thinking ‘Wow!, wow, WOW!’

The late February day my husband and I were here it was cold,

but very bright and the clouds hung lazily over the high desert

that unfolded mile by mile along Steens Mountain.

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Some of my favorite images I’ve ever taken anywhere,

were taken in this valley along our journey back to Burns.

This valley is on my short list of places I’m going to return to

and spend a lot more time exploring.

:   :   :

A good blog friend Karen, lives and ranches in this beautiful valley with her husband,

they call their place ‘Rough String Ranch.’

She shares here on RBH, you’ve probably visited her blog and enjoyed it as much as I do,

when you stop in,

tell Karen I sent you!

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It’s time for you to enter your photos in ‘Rurality Blog Hop – #6.’ ‘Rurality Blog Hop’ is open to everyone who would like to share something about rural life. The linky will open every Wednesday morning around 09:00 Pacific Time and will close Thursday at midnight.


  1. Consider following me, ‘The View From Right Here‘, in most cases I’ll follow you back.
  2. Consider subscribing to posts from ‘The View From Right Here’ via RSS, via eMail), in most cases I’ll subscribe back.
  3. Please just ONE family friendly post about rural themes per week please.
  • Rural photography, rural life, thrift, pets and livestock, recipes, crafts, etc.
  1. Submit the url of your ‘Rurality Blog Hop,’ blog post, not your main blog url, using the LinkyTools prompt below.
  2. Google+ users – submit the url of your posted photo on G+.
  3. Include the ‘Rurality Blog Hop’ badge (or a text link) in your blog post.
  4. Visit some of other entries, meet some new people and leave encouraging comments.

(I reserve the right to remove any post that is inappropriate and multiple entries from the same blog.)

Rurality Blog Hop #8

Thank you for visiting and sharing!

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53 Responses to Wild Horse Valley – Rurality Blog Hop #8

  • Nancy says:

    Amazing vistas Madge and Karen shares some very interesting posts on her life on the ranch. Thanks for hosting, sweetie! xo

  • Carol says:

    Wow! What a place ~ Vista is so panoramic and your photography excellent as always ~ Enjoy ^_^

    Have a photography question ~ am a Nikon camera fan ~ am considering another ~ Coolpix P520 ~ what would be your suggestion for a camera?

    • Madge Bloom says:

      I traded in a little used Pentax prime lens before Christmas to get a point-and-shoot camera to take when I’m out with my husband so he isn’t waiting on me constantly and I don’t feel frustrated because I didn’t get ‘that’ shot!

      I did a lot of research and narrowed my choices to Canon Power Shot S110 (it can operate fully automatic, fully manual and shoots in RAW/JPEG,12mp, and has a nice touch screen & is $449; and Fuji XF1, also fully auto and manual, 12mp, shoots in RAW/JPEG, $499; Panasonic LX7, 10mp also fully auto and manual shoots in RAW/JEPEG at $449; and lastly Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100, 20mp, fully auto and manual it also has the largest sensor of all the point and shoot cameras and the highest price $649. Oh, and one consideration was that I wanted it to truly be able to fit easily in a shirt or pants pocket.

      I would have bought the Fuji XF1, except I didn’t like how you turned the power on by turning the metal ring around the lens, it has the second largest sensor in the point and shoot camera category behind the Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100.

      In the end after days of reading and two days of standing in Glazer’s Camera in Seattle, I chose the Canon Power Shot S110. It is such a new camera that you need to use Adobe’s DNG Converter (free download from Adobe’s website and easy to use) to get the proprietary RAW files into the DNG format read by all photo editing programs such as Photoshop CS5 or Photoshop Elements 10. The Sony Cybershot DSC-RX100 is also very new and would probably need to use this free conversion software to change the format to the DNG industry standard.

      I LOVE that little camera, and right now it is the only thing I can shoot with until I get my neck surgery done, my Pentax K7 with all my great lenses and accessories is too heavy for me to wield. It is as light as my cell phone.

  • Judy says:

    Thank you for hosting, Madge. This is my first time joining and all your photography is stunningly beautiful..Happy Wednesday..Judy

  • Beth says:

    awesome clouds -love the view.

    i got a message from TexWisGirl to link up my “pooper” post – so here goes. wish we luck. ha. ha!! ( :

  • debi says:

    Your photos continue to be an inspiration and I really enjoy that you share the history or the area, Thanks Madge.

  • Marlo says:

    Lovely photo. The sky is beautiful. We haven’t seen to many of those here in OHio this winter. We have one today and it makes me yearn for spring weather!

  • Chel C says:

    Just beautiful Madge. I was really interesting in your comment as well about the different cameras as I want to upgrade mine. Thank you. Chel x

    • Madge Bloom says:

      You’re welcome… I can really obsess about making those kind of choices because one’s choice is probably going to be with you for a long time, so I always want to get it just right! Hope it gives you a starting point… happy hunting!

  • gtyyup says:

    Madge…such kind words, thank you very much! Timing is everything…my husband and I went to Fields on Sunday to visit one of my horses who is living with friends there. We did the loop from Princeton to Diamond to Frenchglen to Fields then up the Alvord Desert side and back home (190 miles). I got some OK shots…but this one you have is perfect!!! Just the right amount of clouds and great lighting!!! My kitty shot today is from our friends place in Fields. Tomorrow I’m going to try to post more photos of the trip. Thanks so much for hosting a great blog hop!

  • Kay says:

    This is so, so, s-o-o-o-o-o-o beautiful! GREAT shot! I remember another shot you posted some time ago from this area that was gorgeous, too. I found it on a map and I’ve resolved to get there. I can see why you’re taken with it. This is a world class gorgeous shot.

    • Madge Bloom says:

      You won’t be disappointed in this gorgeous place! I would especially recommend going over Highway 205 Catlow Road that passes over Steens Mountain between Fields on the east and the west side about 45 miles from Frenchglen…

  • Joyce says:

    I certainly can appreciate the beauty which you have captured. I grew up in scenic Idaho, had family in Oregon and Washington. This part of the country has such pristine beauty which you have so beautifully and artistically captured!
    Thank you for hosting this lovely gathering.


  • ankush says:


    I hope you are doing better now! I saw your mail and it was a sad moment to know that you are facing a low. my best wishes with you!

    I loved your shot. The depth in the shot is incredible!!


  • Amy says:

    I already commented on this, but it keeps jumping out at me from my reader. This is one fantastic photo. I can’t say enough about it. Wow.

    • Madge Bloom says:

      Amy, that IS the way this gorgeous country affects you… you want more, More, MORE! As I said, it is on my short list of places I want to explore in depth…

  • Don says:

    A gorgeous shot of this unusual and beautiful country. I like how you shot today captures the huge expanse of terrain
    with its unique colors and strong appeal to those who don’t know uninhabited land still exists in the US. Very strong post.

  • That’s a stunning view Madge! You have captured the vastness of the plains, the ruggedness of the mountains, the lonesomeness of the road and the glory of the sky all in one shot.

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I've been publishing 'The View From Right Here' in one form or another since 2007. I hope you find images you enjoy from my travels around Seattle, Puget Sound and the greater Pacific Northwest, giving you a glimpse of the beautiful region of the United States of America, where I have always lived.
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Madge Bloom
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