Stories and News from ONDA

Sean Bagshaw   Website

Standing against
racism and injustice

Dear ONDA members: The recent, senseless murders of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, and George Floyd and the threat of violence against Christian Cooper have shaken all of us. The protests of the past week reflect the accumulated pain that has come from generations of racism and injustice in many communities across the country. ONDA...

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Walking the High Desert

A new book about the Oregon Desert Trail debuts this month: Walking the High Desert: Encounters with Rural America along the Oregon Desert Trail, written by Ellen Waterston, published by University of Washington Press. In this book, Waterston, an ONDA member and former high desert rancher, writes of a wild, essentially roadless, starkly beautiful...

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Six Unique Ways to Give

An inky night sky studded with endless stars. Quirky sage-grouse dancing at dawn. A soothing soak in a peaceful hot spring. Discovering delicate desert blooms. Spotting soaring migratory birds. Sage-green vistas that stretch out for miles and miles.  Scenes like these – which you can see in the photos below – are just a...

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Species Spotlight – Pronghorn

A long list of charismatic animals inhabits Oregon’s high desert. Species such as the Greater Sage-grouse, bighorn sheep, cougars, burrowing owls and even the occasional black bear or wandering moose (okay, just one moose), can all be found exploring the characteristic rimrock, sagebrush, and open spaces of the state’s eastern half. In fact, many...

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Please use Caution on that
Oregon Desert Trail Adventure

Please use caution with any Oregon Desert Trail plans due to COVID 19.  Last updated on September 1 Oregon cases of COVID-19 are increasing, especially in remote landscapes like Malheur County (home to the Owyhee Canyonlands) and we continue to advise everyone to follow the state’s guidelines, which include wearing a mask in public...

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How Much Wilderness Do We Need?

In a recent editorial, The Bulletin asked a good question: “how much land does Oregon have that is appropriate for wilderness?” The answer is a lot. A heckuva lot. In Oregon’s high desert alone, federal surveys and volunteer-driven inventories have identified eight million acres of public lands and hundreds of miles of rivers and...

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How to Identify Native Plants

By Scott Bowler Hey, what’s that cool flower? After leading wildflower discovery and identification trips for 40-plus years, I can tell you that people’s most common reaction upon encountering a new flower is: “Oh, cool! What’s that?” They want a name. In this blog post, I’ll guide you through the key steps to figuring...

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Getting Desert Desperate

Five Ideas Admittedly Not as Good as Being in the Desert  Standing in the middle of a vast sagebrush plain, kicking over lichen-crusted rocks, with nothing more to do than let the sun kiss you and the real wind whip through your hair. That is a magnificent feeling.  The joy to be found walking...

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“My favorite spot on earth …”

When Sen. Ron Wyden invited Oregonians to nominate rivers and creeks for protection under the Wild and Scenic Rivers Act last fall, hundreds of people spoke up to nominate Lower Whychus Creek in Central Oregon. The name Whychus means “place where we cross the water” in Sahaptin, the language of the Columbia River tribes....

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Drawn to Nests

One day in spring of 2014, I started drawing bird nests. I didn’t stop for almost a year. These drawings began as a way for me to explore my curiosity about birds’ nests without causing any harm to the birds themselves. My work on this series made me more aware of the impacts we...

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