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At the very northeastern tip of Oregon the magical land of Wallowa County has dazzled the senses since long before Europeans settled in America. To the east it is separated from Idaho by Hells Canyon, a deep chasm gouged by the Snake River on it’s urgent journey to the Columbia River and on to the Pacific ocean. To the north is Washington State. This region sports something for everyone. The most rugged of rugged mountains form Eagle Cap Wilderness Area, a sacred portion of the greater Wallowa Mountains. Hikers and fishermen are drawn to the plentiful rivers and lakes harbored in the hulking folds of the mountains. At the feet of those mountains a verdant valley spreads in three directions. Mountain moisture penetrates the rich soil making perfect habitat for ranching and agriculture.

Historically ranching promoted the construction of enormous, sturdy barns which could shelter animals, equipment and even store hay through the winter. Wallowa county boasts some of the most beautifully preserved and restored historic barns in the west. These hand-crafted works of art put to shame the quickly and cheaply prefabricated metal buildings of modern agricultural operations.

The Octagon Barn – Joseph, OR; Built 1906 for a sheep ranch
Brink Barn – Enterprise, OR; Built in 1930s (Depression? What depression?)
Sometimes the window of restoration opportunity is lost