Malheur Basin Sketches

Tomorrow is the night of the full moon, but this one comes from a month ago.   Dale and I spent three days in the Malheur Basin in central Oregon on our way home from Yellowstone .... so much to see and sketch there!  

I painted this the night we arrived.  From my notes.....

“The moon looks full, but it already rides high in the sky and yet it is not yet dark night.  The full moon must be tomorrow or the next day.  Soon in any case.  A few minutes ago, when I painted the moon, blues and a touch of crimson colored clear parts of the sky.  Dark clouds tried to hide my moon.  Now the clouds have mostly moved on and the moon shines with a hazy glow.  It’ll be cold tonight -- probably a frost.  A meadowlark sings off in the distance.  One frog sings in spite of the chill and I hear a Wilson’s snipe calling.  A little earlier gulls and ibises flew to their roosting spots.  I half expect a straggler to come winging by before I go in.  Dusk is coming quickly.  By tomorrow night I should have seen curlews and willets courting, perhaps grebes dancing, yellow-headed blackbirds singing their scratchy song, and ibis flying overhead.  I’ll for sure soak in marsh sounds and smells.”  

The raven on top has stolen an egg, the smaller raven is being mobbed by red-winged blackbirds because the raven got too close to their nest.
I love the variety of old fence posts I find in central Oregon.  Many are made of juniper  and last for decades.

More sketches, done after I got home, are on my blog:


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