The Palouse country in Eastern Washington is also where I attended Washington State University, Pullman, WA for my MFA in painting.
The undulating landscape, typified in this painting with fall colors across the whole scene, is the result of ancient floods that broke ice dams in Montana, nearly 400 miles east from this spot at Missoula, Montana, causing catastrophic scouring of the whole state of Washington, several times over tens of thousands of years. Imagine a wall of water more than 800 feet high ripping its way clear to Portland, Oregon, taking every last scrap of soil with it. Several times. House size boulders from Montana have been identified by geologists near the mouth of the Columbia River @ 800 miles from the source!
It's why the rest of our state has such huge rock formations sticking up out of the desert floor.
Prevailing winds, over the course of several thousand more years, blew all that soil northeast again, where it settled in "dunes" now know as "The Palouse Country".
The deepest and purest top soil sample in the world (155 feet deep!) was taken not far from where this was painted just outside the little town of Palouse. No rocks in the garden, just pure top soil. it's one of many reasons I love this wild landscape with several hundred square miles of top soil "dunes" that give it an ethereal feel like no other spot on planet earth.
||October Sun, Palouse
||Oct 16 2002
||29h x 35w in. framed