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Steens Mountain, Frenchglen

4.9
#100 of 252 in Nature in Oregon
Must see · Mountain · Nature / Park
The Steens Mountain Wilderness is a wilderness area surrounding a portion of Steens Mountain of southeastern Oregon in the United States. The reserve falls within the Steens Mountain Cooperative Management and Protection Area (CMPA). Both the reserve and the CMPA are administered by the Bureau of Land Management. The wilderness area encompasses of the CMPA's total. of the Wilderness are protected from grazing and free of cattle.
The Steens Mountain Wilderness ranges in elevation from 4200to at the summit of Steens Mountain. The reserve features a variety of vegetative zones, from the arid sagebrush zone in the Alvord Desert, through the western juniper, mountain mahogany, mountain big sagebrush, quaking aspen, subalpine meadow, and subalpine grassland, to the snow cover zone.
Steens Mountain is the largest fault-block mountain in North America. Pressure under the Earth's surface thrust the block upward approximately 20 million years ago, resulting in a steep eastern face with a more gentle slope on the western side of the mountain. During the Ice Age, glaciers carved several deep gorges into the peak and created depressions where Lily, Fish, and Wildhorse lakes now stand.
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TripAdvisor traveler rating 5.0
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  • Steens Mountain is simply awesome. Kiger gorge is one of the most beautiful places to see and experience. Yes the road is washboard at first. But it's really a pretty good gravel road. Wildhorse.....  more »
  • Yes, the loop drive of Steens Mountain will be 50+ miles of washboard gravel road, but the scenery is unlike almost anything you will ever see. Give yourself 3 hours to drive with short stops; plan...  more »

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