The Wallowas remain fairly undiscovered, but they are beloved by the backcountry hikers, campers, and cross-country skiers who have played on their slopes and who praise their Alp-like peaks and glacial lakes. With the range dated at some 200 million years old, ancient seashells are visible in its limestone and greenstone outcroppings. Eagle Cap Wilderness Area -- which covers most of the mountains at 300,000 acres -- boasts some 50 lakes and over half of Oregon's 29 mountains over 9,000 feet.
At the range's feet to the north, the town of Joseph has become the hub of a growing arts community, while Enterprise remains the area's commercial center (and home to the Wallowa Mountain Visitor Center). Near Enterprise, the Wallowa Lake Tramway, the nation's steepest four-person gondola, ascends to the top of Mount Howard for an awe-inspiring view of the Wallowas and away into Idaho.
La Grande, near the edge of the Blue Mountains at the junction where Interstate 84 meets Hwy. 82 west of the Wallowas, is bustling I-84's gateway to Wallowa Lake and the northern Wallowa Range. (Highway 82 is also part of the Hells Canyon Scenic Byway.) The gem of the Wallowas is its namesake lake, which at 5,000 feet is the highest major body of water in eastern Oregon.
The Wallowa Mountains are located in northeast Oregon, southwest of I-84. To learn more about this area, please select an area of interest from the navigation bar on the left.