The layers of fields, tree lines, bars, and hillsides that make up central Oregon remind me of the picturesque bucolic settings of Miyazaki movies.
Even with advanced warning, I wasn’t really ready for the eerie gradients of cloudless central Oregon sunsets in the summer; they remind me of those rover-captured images of sunsets on Mars.
Down the road (and an hour later) from here, the grass harvest was continuing into the pastel-hued evening. The particulates kicked up by their work made this sort of localized haze that refracted the last sunlight to these incredible colors.
The topology of central Oregon at sunset is really very special: the land somehow has that “falling away beneath you” feeling of standing on a hilltop, that “in the hollow” feeling of standing in a valley, and that “goes on forever” feeling of standing on a plain all at the same time. Combine this with the variety of surfaces and textures to experience (gravel, grass, tarmac, wood, lake, sky, woods), and the experience becomes some hyperdimensional superposition of places and moments in time. With just the right car for the particular evening, you have a recipe for perfection.
This bucolic hillside in Corvallis, OR is a special sight. In the rolling heartland of the state, the grass seed harvest happens for only a couple of weeks out of the whole year. I’ve previously posted other shots from the broad hills and valleys of this area, but I particularly like the interplay between the orange of the sky and the pink of the clouds as sunset creeps in.
I had my own staging of Two-Lane Blacktop in central Oregon this weekend, with the company of this particularly lovely 911 Carrera 4S Cabriolet. This is grass seed country, and this particular weekend fell in the middle of the harvest. Long, perfectly maintained roads are intercut with forested hillsides and busy fields. By this point in the evening, however, nightfall brought calm with it.
For every sunny hilltop like the one above, there was a tree-lined valley. The setting sun really picks out the details of every treetop, but it’s a shame that Oregon has such a clean, healthy atmosphere. Without other molecules in the air to scatter the light, the sunsets lack the exciting colors of other parts of the country. This photograph captures the feeling of blasting down the road, wind in my hair, with only an occasional truck for company.