Paulina Peak Panorama

October 10, 2007


Provided by: Alan Beeler
Summary authors & editors: Alan Beeler, Stu Witmer

Many people take the time to drive up the 5 mile (8 km) washboard dirt road to Paulina Peak in central Oregon to be rewarded with the magnificent 360-degree view. A number of the Cascade Range volcanoes can be seen from this over 7,980 ft. (2,432 m) vantage point, including some in Washington to the north and in California to the south. The view into the caldera containing Paulina Lake and East Lake, with the Big Obsidian Flow is also awe-inspiring.

On July 6, 2007, my family drove up, and was given an unexpected view of a huge thunderstorm encroaching from the south. It took more than an hour, but we were eventually rained out. No single-frame photo of the storm could capture it. The photo above is five separate frames stitched together to form one panorama. (Click on photo to enlarge.)

Paulina Peak is one of many geographical features in Oregon named for a local Indian chief who was active in the mid-nineteenth century. The peak is part of Newberry National Volcanic Monument that contains over 50,000 acres of land including the active Newberry Volcano. In the 1960s the Big Obsidian Flow was the site used by NASA to test equipment designed for use on the moon.

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