A Late Afternoon Vision on the shores of Paulina Lake

Paulina Lake casts a spell. You can feel the life of the Newberry Crater all around you, and beneath that, the heat of a slumbering volcano. A few feet away from the footpath, a lizard lounged in the late afternoon sunshine (see image below). Its existence at over 6,000 feet, in an area covered by snow six months of each year, is astounding, but life abounds in the Newberry Crater. One mile further up the path were a series of hot springs (click to see image). I imagined myself back to a time before the first Egyptian pyramid was built. I became an Indian, walking these same paths, living his life beside these lakes, returning to his village with berries and game, or perhaps laden with freshly-gathered obsidian meant for the chiseling of new spearpoints. If you have ever wondered about the origin of the name "Paulina," please read the story about Oregon's notorious Chief Paulina below!

Paulina Lake and East Lake were discovered by White Americans on Nov. 16, 1826. The U.S. President James Monroe had recently been replaced in faraway Washington D.C. by John Quincy Adams.......The discovery party was led by famed Western explorer Peter Skene Ogden. The men were beaver trappers employed by the Hudson Bay Company.... This was some 20 years before the Oregon and Applegate Trails began to pump settlers into Oregon Territory.

This image is available as a vivid Chromira print, in a 8x12 size for $24.00 plus shipping. A larger print is also possible, up to 15 x22 inches, please email for costs if interested.

E-mailer: brucej@oregonphotos.com: click for a direct link to communicate with me about ordering custom Chromira prints of "Paulina Shores."


Paulina Lake lizard, about six inches long. Cold-blooded reptiles such as this lizard spend the majority of each year deep in hibernation due to the cold and snowy conditions high in Newberry Crater. This lizard spends it entire life well above 6,000 feet elevation! My educated guess is that this is a Northern Alligator Lizard. I welcome comments about its identity from those who may be able to offer a positive I.D. (please use the "Contact" button above)


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Page Last Revised 8/23/2023

Chief Paulina, excerpted from William L. Sullivan's 1988 book "Listening for Coyote." Mr. Sullivan hiked solo across Oregon from the Pacific Ocean to Hell's Canyon. His book is one of my personal favorites.

".....Chief Paulina, alias "Bulletproof" Paulina, alias "Attila of the Sagelands." The best-known horse thief of the old Oregon frontier, this slippery Snake Indian eluded soldiers, volunteers, and Warm Springs Indian scouts for years. Finally a rancher shot him dead in 1867 as he was breakfasting on a stolen steer near here on the Ochoco Crest [see note below]. The despised outlaw's bones were left to bleach in the sun. Now -- such is fame-- Paulina's name is bestowed on more Central Oregon places than any other individual's: a lake, mountain, town, prarie, peak, and creek." (Note: the shooting occurred somewhere on the high crest of the Ochoco Mountains, perhaps 50 miles east of Prineville). Mr. Sullivan's book will be found in travel or adventure sections in bookstores under ISBN number 0-8050-1250-8