John Day Fossil Beds National Monument


Day Hike - John Day Fossil Beds National Monument

Naturalist/photo-oriented weekend. Members only. Option to extend trip to include Friday afternoon hike.

COVID-19: Learn about our most up-to-date guidance for participants and leaders on our COVID-19 Response page. All participants and leaders must agree to the COVID-19 Code of Conduct before participating in this Mountaineers activity.
  • Moderate
  • Moderate

7:00am Saturday Painted Hills Unit, near Mitchell, OR

7:30am Sunday Blue Basin trailhead, N of Dayville, OR

Register with leader.  Leader permission required.  Members only.

Friday (Optional) hikes:  Painted Hills overlook (evening, sunset).  Sidetrip(s) recommended while enroute to Mitchell:  Clarno unit (1-2 hrs) for short interpretive self-guided hikes, birding, wildflowers, see plant/tree fossils; and/or Fossil school flora/fauna dig site (1-2+ hrs, fee to dig).

Saturday hikes:  Painted Hills unit - Overlook trail (sunrise, early AM, sunset), Carroll Rim, Overlook Trail, Red Hill, and more.

Sunday hikes:  Sheep Rock unit - Blue Basin circuit and Island in Time, Foree,  Paleontology displays at Visitor Center museum.

Approx drive time from Seattle 6-6.5 hrs.

Nearby camping or motel accommodations (Mitchell area) are recommended.  Recommended camp/motel accommodation list available from leader or see JDFB NM  park website for more info:


John Day Fossil Beds National Monument

Required Equipment

Required Equipment

The Ten Essentials

  1. Navigation
  2. Sun protection
  3. Insulation (extra clothing)
  4. Illumination
  5. First aid supplies
  6. Fire
  7. Repair kit and tools, including knife
  8. Nutrition (extra food)
  9. Hydration (extra water)
  10. Emergency shelter
Trip Reports