The Absaroka Range is a sub-range of the Rocky Mountains in the United States. The range stretches about 150 mi across the Montana-Wyoming border, 75 miles at its widest, forming the eastern boundary of Yellowstone National Park along Paradise Valley, the western side of the Bighorn Basin; the range borders the Beartooth Mountains to the Wind River Range to the south. The northern edge of the range rests along Livingston, Montana; the highest peak in the range is Francs Peak, located in Wyoming at 13,153 ft. There are 46 other peaks over 12,000 ft; the range is drained by the Yellowstone River and various tributaries, including the Bighorn River. Most of the range lies within protected lands including Yellowstone Park, the Absaroka-Beartooth Wilderness, North Absaroka Wilderness, Teton Wilderness, Washakie Wilderness, spanning the Bridger-Teton National Forest, Custer National Forest, Gallatin National Forest, Shoshone National Forest. U. S. Highway 212 from Billings, Montana to Yellowstone climbs over Beartooth Pass 10,947 ft in the neighboring Beartooth Mountains before winding through the Absarokas to the northeast gate of Yellowstone National Park.
It is only open during the summer. U. S Route 14/16/20 follows the Shoshone River from Cody through the range to the eastern gate of the park; the range is named after the Absaroka Indians. The name is derived from the Hidatsa name for the Crow people. John Colter, who may have been the first white person to visit the area traveled along the foot of the Absarokas in 1807 during his reconnaissance of the Yellowstone region. Early explorers included Gustavus Cheyney Doane and Nathaniel P. Langford, who climbed the summit of Colter Peak in 1870. USS Absaroka was named after this mountain range. Geologically, the section of the range in Wyoming consists of volcanic breccia, whereas there is a transition to granite and gneiss bedrock further north of the state line. Igneous rocks of the Absaroka Volcanic Province cover an area of 23,000 km2 in southwestern Montana and northwestern Wyoming, including one third of Yellowstone National Park; these extrusive rocks were erupted during the Eocene Epoch of the Paleogene Period.
Radiometric dating has shown. The eroded remnants of many large stratovolcanoes are found in the area; the dissection of these long extinct volcanoes by erosion allows geologists to see volcanic structures that are impossible to see in active volcanoes. Many terms now used in volcanology originated in nineteenth century field studies of these ancient volcanoes. Mountains and mountain ranges of Yellowstone National Park List of mountain ranges in Montana List of mountain ranges in Wyoming Media related to Absaroka Range at Wikimedia Commons
Bridger-Teton National Forest
Bridger-Teton National Forest is located in western Wyoming, United States. The forest consists of 3.4 million acres, making it the third largest National Forest outside Alaska. The forest stretches from Yellowstone National Park, along the eastern boundary of Grand Teton National Park and from there rides along the western slope of the Continental Divide to the southern end of the Wind River Range; the forest extends southward encompassing the Salt River Range and Wyoming Range mountains near the Idaho border. Located within the forest are the Gros Ventre and Teton Wildernesses, totaling 1.2 million acres. Other points of interest contained in the forest include Gannett Peak, the tallest mountain in Wyoming, the Gros Ventre landslide, one of the largest visible landslides on earth. All of the forest is in turn a part of the 20-million-acre Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. While Gannett Peak is the highest summit in the forest, another 40 named mountains rise above 12,000 feet; the high altitudes and abundant snowfall, exceeding 600 inches at some locations, provides a constant supply of water for streams and rivers.
1,500 lakes help provide water for the Yellowstone and Green rivers, which all have their headwaters in the forest. Seven of the largest glaciers outside of Alaska are located within the forest boundaries. U. S. Route 26 and U. S. Route 287 cross over the continental divide at Togwotee Pass and enter the forest from the north, U. S. Highways 89 and 191 provide access to the forest in the vicinity of Jackson and forest lands to the south; the primary tree species include lodgepole pine, Engelmann spruce, Douglas-fir, subalpine fir and whitebark pine. Willows and sagebrush are found on the lower altitudes, while above the timberline alpine meadows are common. Threatened and endangered species found within the forest boundaries include grizzly bears, black-footed ferret and peregrine falcon. Most of the mammals that existed in the region prior to European settlement can still be found here. Elk, mule deer, bighorn sheep, coyote, marmot and cougar are but a few of the 75 species of mammals known to exist in the forest.
Four subspecies of cutthroat trout are found here including the Snake River cutthroat trout. 355 species of birds have been sighted including bald eagles, trumpeter swans, sandhill cranes and Clark's nutcrackers. Over 2,000 miles of hiking trails are located in the forest providing access into wilderness areas and interlinking with trails in Yellowstone National Park. There are several dozen vehicle accessible campgrounds that have picnic tables and tent sites as well as room in some circumstances for recreational vehicles. Nighttime temperatures can be below freezing any time of the year and mosquitos in the late spring and early summer are common. Summertime high temperatures average in the 70s and the wintertime lows can drop below -50 degrees. Bridger-Teton National Forest is an administrative combination of Bridger and Teton National Forests, amalgamated in 1973; the Bridger National Forest itself absorbed Wyoming National Forest in 1923. The Wyoming National Forest had been created as the Yellowstone Forest Reserve in 1904 renamed in 1908.
The Teton Forest Reserve was created at the same time, destined to become Teton National Forest. Ranger district offices are located in Pinedale, Big Piney, Moran and Jackson; the forest headquarters is located in Jackson. In descending order of land area the forest is located in parts of Sublette, Lincoln and Fremont counties. Granite Hot Springs Green River Wilderness areas: Bridger Wilderness Gros Ventre Wilderness Teton Wilderness Official website
Montana is a landlocked state in the Northwestern United States. Montana has several nicknames, although none are official, including "Big Sky Country" and "The Treasure State", slogans that include "Land of the Shining Mountains" and more "The Last Best Place". Montana is the 4th largest in area, the 8th least populous, the 3rd least densely populated of the 50 U. S. states. The western half of Montana contains numerous mountain ranges. Smaller island ranges are found throughout the state. In all, 77 named; the eastern half of Montana is characterized by badlands. Montana is bordered by Idaho to the west, Wyoming to the south, North Dakota and South Dakota to the east, the Canadian provinces of British Columbia and Saskatchewan to the north; the economy is based on agriculture, including ranching and cereal grain farming. Other significant economic resources include oil, coal, hard rock mining, lumber; the health care and government sectors are significant to the state's economy. The state's fastest-growing sector is tourism.
Nearly 13 million tourists annually visit Glacier National Park, Yellowstone National Park, the Beartooth Highway, Flathead Lake, Big Sky Resort, other attractions. The name Montana comes from the Spanish word Montaña, which in turn comes from the Latin word Montanea, meaning "mountain", or more broadly, "mountainous country". Montaña del Norte was the name given by early Spanish explorers to the entire mountainous region of the west; the name Montana was added to a bill by the United States House Committee on Territories, chaired at the time by Rep. James Ashley of Ohio, for the territory that would become Idaho Territory; the name was changed by Representatives Henry Wilson and Benjamin F. Harding, who complained Montana had "no meaning"; when Ashley presented a bill to establish a temporary government in 1864 for a new territory to be carved out of Idaho, he again chose Montana Territory. This time Rep. Samuel Cox of Ohio, objected to the name. Cox complained the name was a misnomer given most of the territory was not mountainous and that a Native American name would be more appropriate than a Spanish one.
Other names such as Shoshone were suggested, but it was decided the Committee on Territories could name it whatever they wanted, so the original name of Montana was adopted. Montana is one of the nine Mountain States, located in the north of the region known as the Western United States, it borders North South Dakota to the east. Wyoming is to the south, Idaho is to the west and southwest, three Canadian provinces, British Columbia and Saskatchewan, are to the north. With an area of 147,040 square miles, Montana is larger than Japan, it is the fourth largest state in the United States after Alaska and California. S. state. The state's topography is defined by the Continental Divide, which splits much of the state into distinct eastern and western regions. Most of Montana's 100 or more named mountain ranges are in the state's western half, most of, geologically and geographically part of the Northern Rocky Mountains; the Absaroka and Beartooth ranges in the state's south-central part are technically part of the Central Rocky Mountains.
The Rocky Mountain Front is a significant feature in the state's north-central portion, isolated island ranges that interrupt the prairie landscape common in the central and eastern parts of the state. About 60 percent of the state is part of the northern Great Plains; the Bitterroot Mountains—one of the longest continuous ranges in the Rocky Mountain chain from Alaska to Mexico—along with smaller ranges, including the Coeur d'Alene Mountains and the Cabinet Mountains, divide the state from Idaho. The southern third of the Bitterroot range blends into the Continental Divide. Other major mountain ranges west of the Divide include the Cabinet Mountains, the Anaconda Range, the Missions, the Garnet Range, Sapphire Mountains, Flint Creek Range; the Divide's northern section, where the mountains give way to prairie, is part of the Rocky Mountain Front. The front is most pronounced in the Lewis Range, located in Glacier National Park. Due to the configuration of mountain ranges in Glacier National Park, the Northern Divide crosses this region and turns east in Montana at Triple Divide Peak.
It causes the Waterton River and Saint Mary rivers to flow north into Alberta, Canada. There they join the Saskatchewan River, which empties into Hudson Bay. East of the divide, several parallel ranges cover the state's southern part, including the Gravelly Range, the Madison Range, Gallatin Range, Absaroka Mountains and the Beartooth Mountains; the Beartooth Plateau is the largest continuous land mass over 10,000 feet high in the continental United States. It contains Granite Peak, 12,799 feet high. North of these ranges are the Big Belt Mountains, Bridger Mountains, Tobacco Roots, several island ranges, including the Crazy Mountains and Little Belt Mountains. Between many mountain ranges are rich river valleys; the Big Hole Valley, Bitterroot Valley, Gallatin Valley, Flathead Valley, Paradise Valley have extensive agricultural resources and multiple opportunities for tourism and recreation. East and north of this transition zone are the expansive and sparsely populated Northern Plains, with tableland prairies, smaller island mountain ranges, badlands.
The isolated island ranges east of the Divide include the Bear Paw Mountains, Bull Mountains, Castle Mountains, Crazy Mountains, Highwood Mountains, Judi
Gannett Glacier is the largest glacier in the Rocky Mountains within the United States. The glacier is located on the east and north slopes of Gannett Peak, the highest mountain in Wyoming, on the east side of the Continental Divide in the Wind River Range. Gannett is but one of dozens of glaciers located in the Fitzpatrick Wilderness of Shoshone National Forest; as is true with many glaciers around the world, Gannett Glacier is disappearing. Photographic evidence demonstrates that there has been an enormous reduction in the area of the glacier since the 1920s; the area of the glacier was estimated in 1950 to be 4.6 square kilometres and was measured in 1999 to be 3.63 square kilometres. Measurements taken in 1958 and again in 1983 showed a depth reduction of 18.6 metres over 25 years. A general warming pattern and a reduction in moisture is believed to be the reason for the glacier retreating. Numerous other glaciers are located in the immediate area including six more that are within the top ten in size within the Rocky Mountains of the U.
S. In a 1989 study, both Gannett and Dinwoody glaciers were researched to determine the amount of melt water they supplied to streams. Both glaciers supply melt water which flows into Dinwoody Creek, which in turn flows into the Wind River; the melt water was found to have contributed lower amounts to the total water supplied to Dinwoody Creek. This has been attributed to the glaciers thinning and retreating since 1950, when Gannett Glacier was measured to be 20 percent larger than in 1999; the impact on reduced stream flow from Gannett Glacier due to glacial retreat affects more than just the amount of water available for the local ecosystem and downstream agricultural and ranching interests. List of glaciers in the United States
A mountain range or hill range is a series of mountains or hills ranged in a line and connected by high ground. A mountain system or mountain belt is a group of mountain ranges with similarity in form and alignment that have arisen from the same cause an orogeny. Mountain ranges are formed by a variety of geological processes, but most of the significant ones on Earth are the result of plate tectonics. Mountain ranges are found on many planetary mass objects in the Solar System and are a feature of most terrestrial planets. Mountain ranges are segmented by highlands or mountain passes and valleys. Individual mountains within the same mountain range do not have the same geologic structure or petrology, they may be a mix of different orogenic expressions and terranes, for example thrust sheets, uplifted blocks, fold mountains, volcanic landforms resulting in a variety of rock types. Most geologically young mountain ranges on the Earth's land surface are associated with either the Pacific Ring of Fire or the Alpide Belt.
The Pacific Ring of Fire includes the Andes of South America, extends through the North American Cordillera along the Pacific Coast, the Aleutian Range, on through Kamchatka, Taiwan, the Philippines, Papua New Guinea, to New Zealand. The Andes is 7,000 kilometres long and is considered the world's longest mountain system; the Alpide belt includes Indonesia and Southeast Asia, through the Himalaya, Caucasus Mountains, Balkan Mountains fold mountain range, the Alps, ends in the Spanish mountains and the Atlas Mountains. The belt includes other European and Asian mountain ranges; the Himalayas contain the highest mountains in the world, including Mount Everest, 8,848 metres high and traverses the border between China and Nepal. Mountain ranges outside these two systems include the Arctic Cordillera, the Urals, the Appalachians, the Scandinavian Mountains, the Great Dividing Range, the Altai Mountains and the Hijaz Mountains. If the definition of a mountain range is stretched to include underwater mountains the Ocean Ridges form the longest continuous mountain system on Earth, with a length of 65,000 kilometres.
The mountain systems of the earth are characterized by a tree structure, where mountain ranges can contain sub-ranges. The sub-range relationship is expressed as a parent-child relationship. For example, the White Mountains of New Hampshire and the Blue Ridge Mountains are sub-ranges of the Appalachian Mountains. Equivalently, the Appalachians are the parent of the White Mountains and Blue Ridge Mountains, the White Mountains and the Blue Ridge Mountains are children of the Appalachians; the parent-child expression extends to the sub-ranges themselves: the Sandwich Range and the Presidential Range are children of the White Mountains, while the Presidential Range is parent to the Northern Presidential Range and Southern Presidential Range. The position of mountains influences climate, such as snow; when air masses move up and over mountains, the air cools producing orographic precipitation. As the air descends on the leeward side, it warms again and is drier, having been stripped of much of its moisture.
A rain shadow will affect the leeward side of a range. Mountain ranges are subjected to erosional forces which work to tear them down; the basins adjacent to an eroding mountain range are filled with sediments which are buried and turned into sedimentary rock. Erosion is at work while the mountains are being uplifted until the mountains are reduced to low hills and plains; the early Cenozoic uplift of the Rocky Mountains of Colorado provides an example. As the uplift was occurring some 10,000 feet of Mesozoic sedimentary strata were removed by erosion over the core of the mountain range and spread as sand and clays across the Great Plains to the east; this mass of rock was removed as the range was undergoing uplift. The removal of such a mass from the core of the range most caused further uplift as the region adjusted isostatically in response to the removed weight. Rivers are traditionally believed to be the principal cause of mountain range erosion, by cutting into bedrock and transporting sediment.
Computer simulation has shown that as mountain belts change from tectonically active to inactive, the rate of erosion drops because there are fewer abrasive particles in the water and fewer landslides. Mountains on other planets and natural satellites of the Solar System are isolated and formed by processes such as impacts, though there are examples of mountain ranges somewhat similar to those on Earth. Saturn's moon Titan and Pluto, in particular exhibit large mountain ranges in chains composed of ices rather than rock. Examples include the Mithrim Montes and Doom Mons on Titan, Tenzing Montes and Hillary Montes on Pluto; some terrestrial planets other than Earth exhibit rocky mountain ranges, such as Maxwell Montes on Venus taller than any on Earth and Tartarus Montes on Mars, Jupiter's moon Io has mountain ranges formed from tectonic processes including Boösaule Montes, Dorian Montes, Hi'iaka Montes and Euboea Montes. Peakbagger Ranges Home Page Bivouac.com
Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem
The Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem is one of the last remaining large, nearly intact ecosystems in the northern temperate zone of the Earth. It is located within the northern Rocky Mountains, in areas of northwestern Wyoming, southwestern Montana, eastern Idaho, is about 18 million acres. Yellowstone National Park and the Yellowstone Caldera'hotspot' are within it. Conflict over ecological and resource management has been controversial, the area is a flagship site among conservation groups that promote ecosystem management; the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem is one of the world's foremost natural laboratories in landscape ecology and Holocene geology, is a world-renowned recreational destination. It is home to the diverse native plants and animals of Yellowstone. Yellowstone National Park boundaries were drawn in 1872 to include all the known geothermal basins in the region. No other landscape ecology considerations were incorporated into boundary decisions. By the 1970s, the grizzly bear's range in and near the park became the first informal minimum boundary of a theoretical "Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem" that included at least 16,000 square kilometres.
Since definitions of the greater ecosystem's size have grown larger. A 1994 study listed the size as 76,890 square kilometres, while a 1994 speech by a Greater Yellowstone Coalition leader enlarged that to 80,000 square kilometres. In 1985 the United States House of Representatives Subcommittees on Public Lands and National Parks and Recreation held a joint subcommittee hearing on Greater Yellowstone, resulting in a 1986 report by the Congressional Research Service outlining shortcomings in inter-agency coordination and concluding that the area's essential values were at risk. Federally managed areas within the GYE include: United States National Park Service — Yellowstone National Park, Grand Teton National Park, John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Memorial Parkway. United States National Forest Service — Gallatin, Beaverhead-Deerlodge National Forest, Caribou-Targhee, Bridger-Teton, Shoshone National Forests United States Fish and Wildlife Service — National Elk Refuge, Red Rock Lakes and Grays Lake National Wildlife RefugesTen distinct National Wilderness Areas have been established within the GYE's National Forests since 1966, mandating a higher level of habitat protection than the USFS otherwise uses.
The GYE encompasses some held and state lands surrounding those managed by the U. S. Government; the Trust for Public Land has protected 67,000 acres over about 40 projects in the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Ecological managment has been most advanced through concerns over individual species rather than over broader ecological principles. Though 20 or 30 or 50 years of information on a population may be considered long-term by some, one of the important lessons of Greater Yellowstone management is that half a century is not long enough to give a full idea of how a species may vary in its occupation of a wild ecosystem; the Yellowstone hot springs are important for their diversity of thermophilic bacteria. These bacteria have been useful in studies of the evolution of photosynthesis and as sources of thermostable enzymes for molecular biology. Although the smell of sulfur is common and there are some sulfur fixing cyanobacteria, it has been found that hydrogen is being used as an energy source by extremophile microbes.
Among native plants of the GYE, whitebark pine is a species of special interest, in large part because of its seasonal importance to grizzly bears, but because its distribution could be reduced by minor global warming. In this case, researchers do not have a good long-term data set on the species, but they understand its ecology well enough to project declining future conservation status. A more immediate and serious threat to whitebark pines is an introduced fungal rust disease, White Pine Blister Rust, causing heavy mortality in the species. Occasional resistant individuals occur, but in the short to medium term, a severe population decline is expected. Estimates of the decline of quaking aspen on the park's northern range since 1872 range from 50% to 95%. No conservation controversy underway in Greater Yellowstone more reveals the need for comprehensive interdisciplinary research. Several factors are suspected in the quaking aspen's changing status, including: Native American influences on numerous mammal species and on fire ecology-return intervals before the creation of the park in 1872.
European influences on wildfire frequency since 1886. Human harvests of beaver and ungulates in the first 15 years of the park's history, of wolves and other predators before 1930. Human settlement on traditional ungulate migration routes north of the park since 1872. Anecdotal information on grizzly bear abundance dates to the mid-19th century, administrators have made informal population estimates for more than 70 years. From these sources, ecologists know the species was common in Greater Yellowstone when Europeans arrived and that the population was not isolated before the 1930s, but is now. Researchers do not know if bears were less common than now. A 1959-1970 bear study suggested a grizzly bear population size of about 176 revised to about 229. Estimates have ranged as low as 136 and as high as 540. Although the Greater Y
Cloud Peak is the highest peak within the Bighorn Mountains in the U. S. state of Wyoming. It provides onlookers with dramatic views and vistas; the mountain can be climbed most from the western side, accessed by either the Battle Park or West Tensleep trail-heads and is 24 miles round-trip from both. The peak is located in the 189,000 acre Cloud Peak Wilderness within Bighorn National Forest; the northeast slope of Cloud Peak is a deep cirque which harbors Cloud Peak Glacier, the last active glacier in the Bighorn Mountains. Cloud Peak is on the border between Johnson County and Big Horn County in Wyoming and is the high point of both counties; as the high point of an isolated range, Cloud Peak has the greatest topographic prominence in the state, 7,077 feet, one foot more than the state's hightest mountain, 13,810 foot Gannett Peak, fifteenth greatest in the contiguous United States. 4000 meter peaks of North America Central Rocky Mountains Mountain peaks of North America Mountain peaks of the Rocky Mountains Mountain peaks of the United States List of Ultras of North America List of Ultras of the United States "US ultra-prominent peaks".
PeakList.org. Retrieved 2011-05-09. "Cloud Peak on Summitpost". SummitPost.org. Retrieved 2011-05-09. "Cloud Peak". Geographic Names Information System. United States Geological Survey. Retrieved 2011-05-09