Panoramic View of Balanced Rocks

Balanced Rocks of the Lower Metolius Canyon

Hidden and nearly unnoticed in the canyon lands above the Metolius River arm of Lake Billy Chinook are several small bowls with unique geologic formations, known as the “balanced rocks.” Carved by erosion over eons of time, these great slabs of rock weighing many tons are poised up to thirty feet in the air above pinnacles of softer rock. First recorded in 1855 by a railroad survey party traveling in the area, these balanced rock formations are accessible today by a short hike from a good road about thirty driving miles west of Culver.
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Panoramic View of Sand Canyon

Pinnacles of Wheeler and Sand Canyons

Some of the more geologically and visually interesting canyons in Central Oregon are found on the southeast slopes of the Crater Lake caldera. In these lightly-visited canyons are found hundreds of stark stone pinnacles, which have eroded out of the volcanic ash of remnant Mount Mazama. The pinnacles in Wheeler Canyon are easily accessible by car at a viewpoint in Crater Lake National Park, while the rock towers in lower Sand Canyon require a challenging, cross-country bushwhack of 2.7 miles roundtrip.
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