Rocky Mountain Ponderosa Pine (Pinus ponderosa)

Rocky mountain ponderosa pine can be found at elevations ranging from 5,000 and 9,000 feet. It can grow to be between 15 and 45 meters (150 feet) tall, 400 years old, and have seed cones 7.0 cm in length; which are the biggest seed cones in Colorado. A ponderosa pine is distinguished by its brown bark that is intermixed with cinnamon and yellow-orange coloring. They are typically spotted on ridgetops with rocky slopes and shallow soils. Specifically, they prefer drier southern slopes because they can survive using their deep tap roots. In addition, they are wind resistant and can survive ground level fires. Mountain mahogany and rocky mountain juniper thrive in ponderosa pine forests. What’s more, Abert’s squirrels use ponderosa pines for shelter, food, and nesting. The following are pictures of them.

The following Ponderosa Pine is from the Cub Lake Trail in RMNP:


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