About the Museum

Plan Your Visit

Check out current exhibits and daily programs, find directions, rates, hours and more.

Kids & Families

Explore Together

Learn about kid-friendly exhibits, activities, camps and more.


Teach & Learn

Lifelong learning starts here! Explore teacher trainings, memorable field trips and unique school programs.

Join the HDM Family

Make an Impact

Volunteer, become a member or donate to support arts, education, wildlife and more.

Wildlife, History & Art

Otters, porcupines, owls, oh my! Encounter wildlife up close, explore the history and culture of the wild West and take in beautiful art. The High Desert Museum is a cultural gem set on 135 acres of awe. It’s no wonder visitors voted us one of the best things to do in Bend Oregon!

Upcoming Events

  •  07.20.24
     9:00 am - 5:00 pm

Exhibition Opening – Art in the West July 20, 2024 – September 20, 2024 Art in the West is an annual juried exhibition and silent auction featuring traditional and contemporary art that celebrates the landscapes, wildlife, people, cultures and history of the High Desert—a region that stretches from the eastern slope of the Cascades and Sierras to (more…)

  •  07.20.24
     12:00 pm - 3:00 pm

Discover more about the animals of the High Desert region by studying their poop! Scat is a wonderful window into the behaviors and diets of the animals living across unique High Desert habitats. 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm FREE with Museum admission (more…)

  •  07.24.24
     7:30 pm - 9:00 pm

Join the High Desert Museum for a guided twilight expedition in search of bats! Check out the Museum’s new Forest at Night experience to brush up on nocturnal species before heading outside to search for our flying mammalian friends. Weather appropriate clothing and a flashlight or headlamp are necessary. Registration is required for this limited-space, (more…)

  •  07.27.24
     1:00 pm - 4:00 pm

Full steam ahead! See the 1904 Lazinka Sawmill in action and how lumber was processed on-the-go at the turn of the century. 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm FREE with Museum admission (more…)

  •  08.08.24
     9:00 am - 5:00 pm

The Writing Ranch and the High Desert Museum are offering a unique weekend nature writing intensive at the Summer Lake Lodge in Summer Lake, Oregon. Daily generative writing workshops, led by author, OSU Cascades MFA instructor and founder of the Writing Ranch Ellen Waterston, will be informed and complemented by morning field trips and evening (more…)


3.2.24 -

Art, History

Sensing Sasquatch

Native peoples of the Plateau have long known about, encountered, depicted and told stories about Sasquatch. Sensing Sasquatch explores Sasquatch’s past, present and future in the High Desert region through an Indigenous lens. Works by five Indigenous artists will be on view, including: Phillip Cash Cash, Ph.D. (Nez Perce, Cayuse), HollyAnna CougarTracks DeCoteau Littlebull (Yakama, Nez Perce, Cayuse, Cree), Charlene “Tillie” Moody (Warm Springs), Frank Buffalo Hyde (Nez Perce, Onondaga) and Rocky LaRock (Salish).

1.13.24 -

Photography, Art, History

Timber Culture

Timber Culture is a traveling exhibition curated by the Maxville Heritage Interpretive Center. It tells the story of Maxville—a segregated logging town that boomed in Oregon’s Wallowa County during the 1920s and 1930s. The exhibition’s historical images document the lives of the town’s 400 residents and explore stories of race, labor and leisure. Both candid and documentary, the exhibition provides a glimpse into an essential part of Oregon’s history.

12.8.23 -

Photography, Art, History

Andy Warhol's Endangered Species: From the Collections of Jordan Schnitzer and his Family Foundation

Andy Warhol’s Endangered Species will showcase the Pop Art icon’s complete Endangered Species series (1983), as well as select works from Warhol’s Skull series, Vanishing Animals series and one of Warhol’s iconic Marilyn Monroe works. The Endangered Species portfolio was commissioned by art dealers Ronald and Frayda Feldman of the Ronald Feldman Gallery in New York City in 1983, 10 years after the Endangered Species Act was signed into law. This exhibition is a key component in the Museum’s yearlong recognition of the 50th anniversary of the Endangered Species Act.

11.11.23 -


Endangered in the High Desert

It’s been 50 years since Congress passed the Endangered Species Act (ESA), a law that aims to protect vulnerable species from extinction. The ESA is often associated with the 1990 listing of the northern spotted owl. But there are other species in the High Desert, some lesser known, that face the threat of extinction, including the whitebark pine, the pygmy rabbit and the Oregon spotted frog. Visit the Museum’s new exhibit Endangered in the High Desert to explore the past, present and future of this region’s endangered species.

The Institute of Museum and Library Services named the High Desert Museum as one of six recipients of the 2021 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation’s highest honor given to museums and libraries that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities.

The Museum was recognized for providing dynamic programming and services through community outreach, working to create programs that offer rich educational programming and expand museum access.