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Eastern Oregon Dark Skies Foray

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When: Sep 26, 2019 12:00 AM to Sep 29, 2019 12:00 AM
Mary Coolidge

September 26-29, 2019

Alvord and Steens
Night Sky over Alvord Desert by Michael Montgomery

The high desert of southeastern Oregon offers some of the most sensational stargazing on the planet! Join Portland Audubon’s Dark Skies Program Manager, Mary Coolidge, Eastern Oregon Field Coordinator, Teresa Wicks, and Environmental Educator, Abby VanLeuven on a rugged four day adventure. We will explore this uniquely beautiful landscape, seeking out birds and wildlife by day, including Big Horned Sheep, Pronghorn Antelope, Golden Eagle, Black Rosy-finch, Ferruginous Hawk and Green-tailed Towhee, and marveling at the heavens above by night. 

Our trip will take us through Malheur National Wildlife Refuge south to the spectacular summit of Steens Mountain and beyond. We will spend an evening enjoying the night sky from the comfort of Crystal Crane Hot Springs and an evening conducting “light surveys” as part of Public Lands Day, and also have the opportunity to spend time with an astronomer and night sky photographer.  

Participants will learn about some of the most important conservation issues playing out in Eastern Oregon as well as Portland Audubon's efforts to address light pollution - a growing threat to the health of both people and wildlife. This is an active adventure trip that will include moderate day and night hikes on steep, uneven ground, with primitive camping on cold nights in some of the most truly stunning and remote parts of the state.

Bring your tent and sleeping bag for three nights of camping! The first night we’ll be camping at Crystal Crane Hot Springs, and then we’ll enjoy a rare opportunity to camp at the Riddle Brothers Ranch in the South Steens. Please join us under the stars in Eastern Oregon!


Registration Details

Leaders: Mary Coolidge, Teresa Wicks, and Abby VanLeuven
Fee: $395 members / $445 non-members
  $200 to secure your space
Group sizes: Limited to 12 participants
Transportation and all meals provided EXCEPT dinner our first night out.


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