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Rumor has it - When God takes a vacation, he goes to a Colorado Wilderness!


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Flattops Wilderness Invitation

Video | Area History | Geology Info | Cutthroat Trout | Real "WILD" Wildlife
Plant Life

The Flattops Wilderness contains a wide range of vegetation zones influenced by elevation and climate.

At lower elevations, between 7,500 and 9,000 feet, south facing slopes are usually covered with sage, Gambel oak and aspen. The moister north facing slopes are characterized by dense stands of conifers, commonly known as "black timber". Lodgepole pine is the conspicuous conifer at low to mid-elevations. Moving higher, Engelmann spruce and subalpine fir become the dominant forest cover.

Treeline occurs at about 11,000 feet. In the harsh conditions at treeline the spruce and fir trees become stunted and gnarled, taking on strange, contorted shapes. This is the krummholtz (a German word meaning "twisted wood").

Above treeline is the alpine tundra. The low ground-hugging plants in the tundra evolved in this severe climate over millions of years. They remain in delicate balance and can be destroyed if disturbed.

Wooden Picture Frame
This tree grew 1/2" per year. I wonder if the ancient Utes noticed this tree when it was alive??
Columbine - Colorado State Flower
Colorado State Flower taken from the top of Shingle Peak 11,994' - What a view!
Big Fish Lake
Wildflowers - Big Fish Canyon
Upper Marvine Lake
Marvine Lake through the flowers
Aspen trees for beaver dams
Aspen trees for beaver dams
Flattops Wildflowers
On the trail to Island Lakes