WNTS Trip Report – Bristlecone

Part Two




Part One of this two-part series finisihed with the photo above, some recommended readings, and the question about ho many trees was our yellow lab, Lacey, in the lower left hand corner, tied to? Without going into a DNA analysis, the consensus among the references I read was that this assemblage consisted of nine trees.




Part Two continues, displaying a bristlecone tree that’s genes predisposed it to spiral growth, its limbs and branches twisted and sinewy.

Another bristlecone with predisposed to spiral grain, with half of its sinewy limbs bare of foliage.


The ‘straighter’ of the two, catches the sunrise a little later. It bears a tag on the back that reads 01-001.

Measuring the circumference at four foot above ground (parallel to slope, not taken level), this tree was slightly more than 300 inches around (about 25’), with an approximate height of 25 feet.  Though not a record breaker, this was one of the more spectacular specimens.

While the images are ‘still’, the winds were fierce and I estimate gusts to be in the 40 – 50 mph range. An image of the trail returning to the trailhead follows. While appearing treacherous, the crust hadn’t quite ‘set up’, and with carefully placed steps, I returned to the trailhead.

One car had preceded me in arriving and leaving, and my tracks leaving added up to only two cars visiting the Schulman Grove this morning. But only I was feted to these lenticular cloud formations!


A shorter and second installment of this bristlecone report will soon follow, to include images captured a dozen or so miles to the north last year (October, 2008), in the Patriarch Grove, at just over 11,000 ‘.


How many trees is Lacey, my yellow lab, tied to?

Recommended Reading:

Arno, Stephen F.    Discovering Sierra Trees.   Association Yosemite National Park   1973

Johnson, Anne.  The Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest.  Community Printing and Publishing   Bishop California   1999

Lanner, Ronald M.  The Bristlecone Book – A Natural History of the World’s Oldest Trees.   Mountain Press Publishing   Missoula Montana   2007

Paruk, Jim   Sierra Nevada Tree Identifier.   Yosemite Association Yosemite National Park   1997

Schlenz, Mark A.   A Day in the Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest.  Companion Press   Bishop, California  2008

Sudworth, George B.   Forest Trees of the Pacific Slope.   Dover Publications, Inc    New York   1908