Winter in the Palouse

Wheels in Winter - ©Gary Hamburgh 2004 - All Rights Reserved

I receive questions all the time asking “what is the best time to photograph in the Palouse?”. My answer is that it depends what type of images you are looking to capture. Each season has its own kind of beauty.

When I first began shooting in the Palouse, I didn’t enjoy the winter season because of the lack of color and textures. During winter the landscape can look very bleak and isolated. I gave myself a project to depict the winter landscape in a more meaningful way to me.

An example of this is the image at the top of this post. I used the leading lines of the irrigation equipment to take the viewer to the hills and sky.  Also the equipment shows something which is very useful at times but is lying dormant during the winter season. The winter wheat in the area is also lying dormant in the ground waiting for spring.

I now really enjoy shooting during the winter season as I try to capture the beauty of that time. I would caution you as you travel the Palouse in the winter to be careful of the extreme cold that may be present. Consider how you will protect your equipment and yourself. Also consider your  driving skills as the road conditions may be less than ideal.

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5 responses to “Winter in the Palouse

  1. where is exactly Palouse?
    this looks amazing by the way

  2. garyhamburgh

    The Palouse is an area that is located mainly in eastern Washington.

  3. Hi Gary, just wondering how bad is the weather in December? I was thinking of going there for 3-4 days during the christmas weekend. Is the winter weather just too bad?

  4. Typically the weather will be cold in December in the 20’s and 30’s. The amount of snow can vary to very little to heavy. I do know that the road to the top of Steptoe Butte has always been closed when I have tried to visit there at this time of year. According to the weather report on weather.com which is what I always check there will be small amounts of snow during the Christmas break. It is not usually the most picturesque time of year for photography in that area.

    I hope this is somewhat helpful to you as I am not in the Palouse at this time but in Phoenix Arizona and going home to Seattle.

  5. thanks for the quick reply. Yes I will check some more details out.
    Yeah Palouse looks totally different with all the snow. Never seen anything like that. Also thought the Palouse falls would be interesting.

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