Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

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dbhguru
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Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by dbhguru » Fri Jul 29, 2011 8:27 pm

ENTS,

These images were taken on Craggy Flats Bald in the Great Craggies of western NC. Altitude of images ranged from 5,220 feet to 5,675.

These ancient yellow birches are all alive, but look at what they are doing.

CG-YB-1.jpg
CG-YB-2.jpg
CG-YB-3.jpg
CG-YB-4.jpg
CG-YB-5.jpg
CG-YB-6.jpg
CG-YB-7.jpg
CG-YB-8.jpg
CG-YB-Monica.jpg
I've never seen the equal of the gnarled and contorted forms. The forest begins at the picnic grounds and goes to the top of the bald. Other species include Catawba Rhododendron, Yellow Buckeye, Sugar Maple. It is a Tolkien Forest par excellence. Yellow Birch girths range from 6 to nearly 12 feet.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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edfrank
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Re: Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by edfrank » Fri Jul 29, 2011 8:45 pm

Bob,

Very neat looking Yellow Birch trees.

Ed
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James Parton
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Re: Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by James Parton » Fri Jul 29, 2011 10:36 pm

Bob,

I have been where you have taken these photos. I especially remember the birch tree third up from the bottom. Do you have any idea how old it is? I wonder that every time I see it.

Your photo skills are getting impressive! Monica does so well in that last photo.

And, I love the grass that grows under these trees at such high altitudes. It makes me just wanna lay down in it and go to sleep. Maybe on a blanket, of course!

Damn, and you were in North Carolina! I was on the Parkway today too. Visiting a Spruce Grove near Black Balsam Mountain. Remembering my mom.
James E Parton
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mdavie
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Re: Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by mdavie » Sat Jul 30, 2011 7:20 am

Birches do really get freaky up high, they can really be odd and beautiful.

P.S. did you guys see any ripe blueberries up there yet?

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dbhguru
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Re: Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by dbhguru » Sat Jul 30, 2011 7:42 am

Mike,

No, no blueberries yet.

James,

Two shots of grass under beech and birch.
YB-11.jpg
YB-10.jpg

One final YB shot for the road.
YB-12.jpg
Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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PAwildernessadvocate
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Re: Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by PAwildernessadvocate » Sat Jul 30, 2011 9:07 am

Some of those yellow birches in your photos likely germinated on top of gigantic stumps, which have since rotted away.

There are a lot of younger yellow birches in the Allegheny National Forest area that appear to have grown "on stilts" because of that.
"There is no better way to save biodiversity than by preserving habitat, and no better habitat, species for species, than wilderness." --Edward O. Wilson

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eliahd24
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Re: Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by eliahd24 » Sat Jul 30, 2011 6:47 pm

Love those high altitude NC dwarf forests- so close to my home in Atlanta, but such a different forest type!

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dbhguru
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Re: Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by dbhguru » Sat Jul 30, 2011 7:41 pm

ENTS,

Although the old Yellow Birches stole the show, there was much, much more to be entranced by. Here are 3 more images. Gnarled Northern Red Oaks at the edge of the bald, Rhododendron tangle, and Pipe Vine Swallowtail on Turks Cap Lilies. GREAT PLACE!
CG-Oaks.jpg
CG-Rhodies.jpg
CG-butterfly.jpg
Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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Don
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Re: Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by Don » Sun Jul 31, 2011 2:21 am

Bob-
Which camera did you use here??
-Don
Don Bertolette - President/Moderator, WNTS BBS
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dbhguru
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Re: Yellow Birches Behaving Strangely

Post by dbhguru » Sun Jul 31, 2011 7:05 am

Don,

I used the new camera. It does a better job employing the telephoto lens. I'm still evaluating it. When I get home, I'll seriously read the manual and experiment. Here is an image of the Black Range, looking from the Parkway.
BRPW-Blacks.jpg
I love this view. The Blacks are western-sized mountains clothed in dense timber from bottom to top. The western Carolina Mountains are a national treasure.

Bob
Robert T. Leverett
Co-founder, Native Native Tree Society
Co-founder and President
Friends of Mohawk Trail State Forest
Co-founder, National Cadre

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