You Are There! Hike the Highline Trail
Encountering a rare plant is always an exciting find. Rarity in higher elevations is driven by local adaptation and isolation of inter-continental mountain ranges, creating a higher degree of endemism (i.e. species exclusively native to this area). These endemics can be as limited in range from a plant species with less than five populations in the state (critically imperiled) to over 20 populations (state rare). Rare disjuncts from the northern circumboreal latitudes have also found their way down to the Wind River Mountains. Below are some of the delicate wildflowers that have earned our attention.
Rare plants in the general area include aromatic pussytoes (Antennaria aromatica), Greenland primrose (Primula egaliksensis), Hesperochiron (Hesperochiron californicus), Leadville milkvetch (Astragalus schultziorum), naked-stemmed parrya (Parrya nudicaulis), Payson’s bladderpod (Lesquerella paysonii), Weber’s saw-wort (Saussarea weberi), and woolly fleabane (Erigeron lanatus).