Scenic USA - Washington

Scenic USA offers a collection of select photographs from a wide variety of attractions, points of interest, historic sites, state parks and
national parks found throughout the United States. Each photo feature is coupled with a brief explanation.
For further detailed information, links to other related sites are provided.

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Quincy Wildlife Area - Second Pothole

Quincy Wildlife Area - Second Pothole

Photo by Eric Noel
Ancient Lake Gallery

     Spewing from large fissures in the earth’s crust, Columbia River basalts blanketed nearly 80,000 square miles in the Northwest nearly 17 million years ago. Covering the Inlet Falls majority of eastern Washington, and parts of Montana, Idaho and Oregon, this lava field measures nearly a half mile thick. Some of the notable areas of this mammoth slab of basalt lie in Washington’s Quincy Wildlife Area. Here in this arid side of the state, erosion has stripped away topsoil, exposing a land of towering cliffs and mesas, benches, coulees and huge potholes. The 15,000 acre Quincy Lakes Unit is covered in with shrub-steppe vegetation. Common sage, bluebunch, and wheatgrass do little to hide these striking geologic features.
     The Ancient Lakes and Dusty Lake areas, located among the canyons of Quincy Wildlife Area, provides plenty of wide open spaces for exploration. In his wanderings, Eric found the Ancient Lakes preserve lying between two imposing mesas, accentuated by a collection of pothole lakes. Several Waterfalls break the silence of this immense natural area.
     Today, the Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife manages over a million acres of wildlife areas. With its mission statement to preserve, protect and perpetuate the state’s wildlife species, the agency plays a critical role in maintaining this natural heritage land.


 

 

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