Painted Hills in John Day Fossil Beds National Monument

June 27, 2011

Photographer: Paul Marcellini; Paul's Webpage
Summary Author: Paul Marcellini; Jim Foster

June 2011 Earth Science Picture of the Day Viewer's Choice

The photo above shows the eye-catching Painted Hills Unit in the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument of Oregon. These conspicuous layers represent different claystone deposits laid down about 25 million years ago when this area was a floodplain. Over time, erosion has exposed the ochre, orange and apricot layering. The coloration of the claystone strata seem to change with changing light conditions and moisture levels. Photo taken on May 18, 2010.

Photo details: Canon EOS 5D Mark II camera; 17-40mm lens; ISO 400; aperture 16; shutter speed 1/30 second.