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“Bite-Size Bits of Local, National, and Global History”
Near Imnaha in Wallowa County, Oregon — The American West (Northwest)
 

The Imnaha Canyon ... shelter and sanctuary

Hells Canyon National Recreation Area

 
 
The Imnaha Canyon ... shelter and sanctuary Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, September 10, 2010
1. The Imnaha Canyon ... shelter and sanctuary Marker
Inscription. We all need shelter: plants, animals and people. For countless ages many have found what they need here in the Imnaha. The canyon walls protect against harsh weather and the river provides its life-giving waters to the dry landscape. The Imnaha supports lush native vegetation and irrigated gardens, orchards and ranch lands. People have known for thousands of years that this canyon is a sheltering, nourishing place.

Nez Perce have lived here since time beyond memory. Thousands of years ago they learned that while winter settled into the high country, the Imnaha Valley stayed warmer and greener. In ancient times, they dug the floors of their houses several feet into the ground for added warmth and covered the structures with mats of hide. Winter was a time for fishing, hunting and gathering plants. Although the pit-houses are gone the Nez Perce remain and continue to enjoy fishing and hunting in the Imnaha.

Homesteaders and ranchers arrived in the late 1800s and found the place ideal for raising sheep and cattle. For some settlers the isolation was difficult, but many thrived on the peace and freedom they found here. Many descendents of these hardy pioneers still call the Imnaha home. Today, the valley is bountiful with orchards, farms, fishing and good living.

The Imnaha River and the plants growing along
Close-up of Photo on Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, September 10, 2010
2. Close-up of Photo on Marker
its banks support vast numbers of birds, animals and fish. The river teems with Chinook salmon, steelhead and trout during seasonal migrations. Fishermen came from all over the country to test their skill in these waters. Many Nez Perce tribal members practice traditional fishing methods in the Imnaha.
 
Erected by United States Forest Service.
 
Location. 45° 28.471′ N, 116° 56.484′ W. Marker is near Imnaha, Oregon, in Wallowa County. Marker is on Imnaha Highway (Oregon Route 350) 2 miles south of Bear Gulch Road (National Forest Road 3520), on the right when traveling north. Touch for map. Marker is in this post office area: Imnaha OR 97842, United States of America.
 
Other nearby markers. At least 3 other markers are within 10 miles of this marker, measured as the crow flies. The Nez Perce War of 1877 (approx. 7.9 miles away); Horse Creek Overlook (approx. 9.3 miles away); A Monumental Landscape (approx. 9.3 miles away).
 
Categories. EnvironmentNative AmericansSettlements & Settlers
 
Close-up of Map on Marker image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall, September 10, 2010
3. Close-up of Map on Marker
Imnaha River Canyon image. Click for full size.
By Duane Hall
4. Imnaha River Canyon
View to southwest from Five Mile Overlook
on Hat Point Road
 
 
Credits. This page was last revised on June 16, 2016. This page originally submitted on February 14, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas. This page has been viewed 296 times since then and 21 times this year. Photos:   1, 2, 3, 4. submitted on February 14, 2014, by Duane Hall of Abilene, Texas.
 
Editor’s want-list for this marker. Photo of wide-view of marker and surroundings • Can you help?
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