Temps were in the low 50's but with occasional sunshine, a few lizards were out basking along the Exploration Trail below Mill Peak.
What first struck me about this lizard was how smooth it looked. That may have biased me too much towards the more interesting of the 2 options (i.e. not a western fence), but the details seem to match in favour of sagebrush.
In the "Clarno Unit" area of the John Day Fossil Beds National Monument.
Gravid female digging a nest for her eggs. Within 1 hr, I observed her dig the hole deep enough for her entire body (including most of her tail) to be hidden.
She was not noticeably alarmed by the presence of several people standing nearby.
The sagebrush lizard (Sceloporus graciosus) is a common species of phrynosomatid lizard found at mid to high altitudes in the western United States of America. It belongs to the genus Sceloporus (spiny lizards) in the Phrynosomatidae family of reptiles. Named after the sagebrush plants near which it is commonly found, the sagebrush lizard has keeled and spiny scales running along its dorsal surface.