For the better part of July I was contracted by the Forest Service Region 5, in a partnership with the CNPS Vegetation Program, to follow up with our 2013 work mapping and monitoring whitebark pine in the north state. I visited numerous sites where I predicted Pinus albicaulis might occur to conduct surveys and improve our state-wide range map for the species. Overall, the health of the species in northern California is in slow decline due to a variety of factors including mountain pine beetle, white pine blister rust, global climate change, and recent high intensity fires. In an earlier post, I shared some highlights from the Modoc National Forest, this post shares images and highlights from Klamath National Forest whitebark pine work.
Goosenest Ranger District
This region is east of Interstate 5 and north of Mount Shasta. It consists of isolated volcanoes which, if over about 7500′ will hold small stands of whitebark pine. I visted two of the district’s highlights to look for trees–Goosenest and Willow Creek Mountain. In between these two peaks is the spectacular Little Shasta Meadow Botanical Area.
Overall, trees here are doing well though there is evidence of mountain pine beetle kill in some areas–though much smaller in scale that was seen on the Modoc around 2009.
Salmon/Scott River Ranger District
I visited three different regions on four backpacking trips to survey this area. The mountain tops are remote and often only accessible via 4WD and/or long hikes. But, this is the Klamath Mountains, my favorite place on Earth, so every arduous mile traveled was a joy.
9 Replies to “Klamath National Forest Whitebark Pine”
Great pics of great places. Thanks for sharing!
Glad you enjoyed, Robert!
Good to see some fairly healthy stands in the pics. In my part of the world — N. Rockies — appears there’s a lot higher WB mortality, especially in ranges and portions of ranges in more significant precip shadows.
fascinating pics of places we have visited. Fire damage to Wooley Creek and Man Eaten areas are striking. Enjoyed closing pic of meadow and smoke. Thank you for sharing your good work
Excellent and interesting work, as usual
Thanks for sharing Michael. In my experience, usually, where there has been fire – there are felled whitebark pine by fire crews…..just another mortality agent.
Thanks Michael, nice article and great pictures. There have been a couple surveys (specifically by M. Murray) and I know there are a couple individuals on Mt. Ashland in Oregon but its missing from most of the potential habitat, have you had a chance to survey further west in the Siskiyous and Red Buttes Wilderness? In the RRS NF there are a couple of known stands on Brown Mtn and Mr Mcloughlin, but I think that’s it? Your hard work is appreciated
Josh- I have seen the small clusters of trees on Mount Ashland and talked to Michael (and others) about them. Really interesting that they are there. I have surveyed further west across the Siskyiou Crest and they are not further west then what we surveyed in summer 2018. Seems their distribution is limited by the large “feeder” populations on Boulder Peak, Mount Eddy, etc. I have mostly complete GIS layers for Northern California if you are interested.
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