Fall in the North Cascades: Alpine Larch

All along the high ridges and basins of the eastern slope of the North Cascades, lives a distinctive tree. The alpine larch (Larix lyallii) eeks out its existence at the very edge of tree-line in these mountains, acting as the gateway to the alpine above and the immense trees which characterize lower elevations in these mountains. Larch trees are the only conifer tree in the world that has deciduous needles and each fall the brilliant gold of these trees lights up the crisp fall air in the high mountains.

_10B5245 An alpine larch and the granite spires of Kangaroo Ridge in the North Cascades.
_10B5057 Darcy Ottey on a fall outing in the North Cascades of Washington.
_10B5086 During the fall, the limited range of alpine larch is illuminated brilliantly all along the edge of treelike in the high country.
_10B5229 At the lower elevations in their range alpine larch blend with subalpine fir and Engelmenn spruce.
_MG_7307 A grove of alpine larch below the snow covered north face of Frisco Peak and the Lyle glacier.
_10B5297 A few alpine larch dot the upper reaches of Early Winters Creek with the iconic Liberty Bell massif beyond.

_10B5190 _10B5225 _10B5249 _10B5266 _MG_7311


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