The Painted Hills Unit is just one of three units that make up the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument. This unit alone contains more than 3,000 acres of unmatched beauty, unique even to Oregon. The monument gets its name from the John Day River, the longest undammed river that flows into the Columbia. The three units together combine for a total of 14,000 acres. At John Day Fossil Beds, paleontologists have been able to find fossil remains of animals and plants dating back 40 million years. The Painted Hills Unit is located about 50 miles from Prineville, Oregon. From Prineville, travel east on US 26/Ochoco Highway for about 44 miles. Turn left onto Burnt Ranch Road for about 1.5 miles. Burnt Ranch Road becomes Bridge Creek Road. You‚’ll travel about five miles on Bridge Creek Road. Use caution when driving this gravel road and be sure to gas up and get any supplies you might need in Prineville.
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