Shaun and I just returned from a trip to the Steens Mts and the Alvord Desert. Though we've both been to the Steens a dozen times over the past 20 years, neither of us had ventured down to the Alvord Desert so easily visible from the summit.
We spent the first, very cold night at Fish Lake. After that we packed up and headed to the top where we hiked in to our usual spot and camped next to Wildhorse Lake. The next day we packed up, hiked out and headed down the mountain to drive around to the desert side.
There's a great place to stop for a burger and a milshake called the Fields Station. The cook there talked us out of the double burgers thankfully.
We stopped mid afternoon for a soak at the Alvord hot springs and were soon joined by a whole crew of guys who had just ridden quads over from Bend on dirt roads.
After that, we headed to Mann lake to camp for the night. We met a fisherman from Bend named Steve, who was camping in the most awesome Dodge camper van decorated with pink flamingos and violet lights. We shared some great stories and some of his smoked salmon. It was a very windy night and we likely slept better than he did as the wind shook his van pretty steadily through the night.
The next morning after a beautiful sunrise, we headed back across the state. Amazing trip, new adventures and a few things to revisit for sure.