: Clarno Unit of John Day Fossil Beds by Kate Jorgensen


This little ranching town was born when a stagecoach rumbled to a stop on an arid plain in Central Oregon.

Antelope draws fossil fanatics to the nearby Clarno Unit of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument, while the Crooked River National Grassland teems with options for camping, hiking and fishing. Whitewater thrill seekers and flat-water floaters enjoy the Deschutes and John Day rivers. Get a scare with a visit to a nearby ghost town.

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What’s the best route to see the John Day Fossil Beds?

You can make a great loop between Portland and John Day. The most exciting route will be to take Highway 26 all the way. It will take you over Mt Hood into central Oregon and through The Painted Hills. Total driving time is about 5 hours. For a return trip, I recommend heading north through…

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