Foxtail Pines Across The Klamath Mountains
For the majority of the week I spent time with foxtail pine and came away with the feeling that this species is still doing very well. There was some recent evidence of mortality, possibly caused by WPBR, but there was more evidence of vigorous seedling recruitment where snowbanks had typically lingered late into summer but were now melting away earlier and providing new habitat for high elevation species. Whitebark pines I only saw at the end of the trip on China Mountain—they are the true high elevation species and I did not see them in the south—or in the Trinity Alps as I had expected. In the Scott Mountains they grow alongside foxtail pines. Again, they seemed to be doing well. There was some evidence, though slight, that WPBR might be causing some mortality but I saw this on only a handful of trees over several hundred acres of forest.
What follows is a photo-blog of the trip...enjoy.
North Yolla Bolly Peak | Yolla Bolly Wilderness
The sun sets on North Yolla Bolly Peak and the relict foxtails here at the southern tip of the Klamath Mountains.
The sun also rises—notice King's Peak on the Lost Coast far on the horizon.
Windswept foxtails grace the meadows on the summit of North Yolla Bolly Peak.
Trinity Alps Wilderness
Climbing into the higher Trinity Alps, foxtail pines begin to appear as competition diminishes—with the help of a serpentine substrate.
A charismatic foxtail pine hangs from the south face of Seven Up Peak.
High above the Stuarts Fork, hanging south-facing valleys hold picturesque foxtails. I found a certain pine here that I need to return to and measure as it may be one of the largest on the planet.
Quill-leaf lewisia (Lewisia leana) carpets the ground below a grove of foxtail pines.
A view toward Seven Up Peak from above Luella Lake. Notice the sparse vegetation on the left characterized by foxtail pines—due to serpetine soil. On the right the granite fosters a much richer forest of Shasta fir, white fir, and western white pine.
China Mountain | Scott Mountains
This vast foxtail and whitebark pine forest is surely one of the largest in northwest California.
Ian Nelson ponders an old giant with views toward Mount Shasta—and wonders why the PCT doesn't traverse this ridgeline...
With foxtail pine next to Jeffrey pine, the boy was happy!
Need more of a foxtail pine fix? Follow this LINK