The Windows Hillside

By Deane Barker on April 12, 2004

I paved a Windows machine last night, and reloaded Windows XP Home from scratch. That being the case, I spent a lot of time looking at the default Windows desktop background. You know, the grassy hill picture. The file is called “Bliss.”

Does anyone know where this hillside is? Do you think it’s a real picture or is it some Photoshop concoction? There’s a mountain range off to the right side of the picture in the background. I wonder if someone could use this to figure its location out.

I threw a couple of Google searches at the question, but came up empty. Anyone else want to give it a shot?

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  1. Another question I have about the picture is that at 1600×1200, down in the lower left corner along the road/path there appears to be a purple dustcloud (or something). It shows up less on my work CRT but at home on my laptop it is much more visible.

  2. I don’t know for a fact that it came from here, but in the Palouse region of Eastern Washington state, there are those same green rolling hills witht he twisty roads. Remember the Dodge neon commercials from a few years ago withthe white cars zipping on nice black ribbon roads? Same place.

  3. I totally agree about Bliss being a Palouse area picture. The “mountain” in the right background could actually be Kamiak Butte near Pullman, or Steptoe Butte north of Colfax (most likely, as Steptoe is taller than Kamiak). That foreground twisty road is probably a dirt or gravel access road in a farm field. The skyscape is also distinctively Palouse.

  4. I agree with the notion that this is the Palouse, and this is the first forum in which I’ve seen anyone discuss it. The mountains to the right may be the western front range of the Rockies in Idaho…I used to live there, and the view north from Step-Toe Butte in Washington, or along U.S. 95 from Pullman, looks just like this. Makes sense that it’s in Washington…so is Microsoft, albeit on the other side of the state.

  5. Robert Scoble responded to me and said “I learned it’s actually a hillside in Sonoma.”

    Still, I’d like to see the article if anyone has access to this magazine.

  6. definitely not a photoshop. i’ve heard both before – a hill outside napa, CA and near palouse, WA.

    check out the movie ‘toys’ with robin williams. they use that hill for a few scenes. good exposure – the hill is almost emphasized during the shots. no doubt it’s the same hill. pay particular attention to the scenes with the large elephant blowing bubbles.

    find out where they filmed these scenes, and you’ll find your hill.

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