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Using wind-deformed conifers to measure wind patterns in alpine transition at GLEES

Posted date: May 28, 2015
Publication Year: 
1990
Authors: Musselman, Robert (Bob) C.; Wooldridge, Gene L.; Fox, Douglas G.; Connell, Bernadette H.
Publication Series: 
General Technical Report (GTR)
Source: In: Schmidt, Wyman C.; McDonald, Kathy J., comps. Proceedings - Symposium on whitebark pine ecosystems: Ecology and management of a high-mountain resource; 1989 March 29-31; Bozeman, MT. Gen. Tech. Rep. INT-GTR-270. Ogden, Utah: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station. p. 80-84.

Abstract

The Glacier Lakes Ecosystem Experiments Site (GLEES) is a high-elevation ecosystem in the Snowy Range west of Laramie, WY, that is perceived to be highly sensitive to changes in chemical and physical climate. Deposition of atmospheric chemicals to this ecosystem is, in part, governed by the wind pattern. The GLEES has numerous wind-swept areas where the coniferous vegetation growth pattern is characteristically wind deformed or krummholz. Studies conducted in 1988 determined direction and degree of wind deformation of Engelmann spruce (Picea engelmannii) and subalpine fir (Abies lasiocarpa) trees. Where both species occurred together, their wind deformation was similar. Limber pine (Pinus tlexilis) occurred as scattered, isolated individuals on exposed ridges with extensive deformation, but because of its sparse occurrence was not useful in determining windspeed and direction in the GLEES. Engelmann spruce and subalpine fir tree deformation patterns were used to determine wind fields, which were compared with measured meteorological data at GLEES.

Citation

Musselman, Robert C.; Wooldridge, Gene L.; Fox, Douglas G.; Connell, Bernadette H. 1990. Using wind-deformed conifers to measure wind patterns in alpine transition at GLEES. In: Schmidt, Wyman C.; McDonald, Kathy J., comps. Proceedings - Symposium on whitebark pine ecosystems: Ecology and management of a high-mountain resource; 1989 March 29-31; Bozeman, MT. Gen. Tech. Rep. INT-GTR-270. Ogden, Utah: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Intermountain Forest and Range Experiment Station. p. 80-84.