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January 31, 2012

Saving the Whitebark Pine with a Climb

In the December 2011 issue of High Country News, Hal Herring wrote a thoughtful, compelling, and informative essay about his experiences gathering seeds from healthy Whitebark Pines throughout the western United States. Seed gatherers are collecting these seeds in a heroic effort to preserve this extremely threatened species.

This essay has it all! It teaches the reader of the vastly dynamic ecosystem that is at risk due to the Whitebark Pines rapid decline. It captures beautiful imagery of the rugged landscape that exists on the edge of the tree line that so many of us in the western United States enjoy. This essay presents to the reader an intimate account of a person working a unique job with a unique perspective. And perhaps most importantly, Hal Herring highlights an extremely serious problem that has spread throughout the west without sugarcoating it. He gives us the facts and he gives us a glimpse into a potential solution.

Check this essay out! You will probably want to go climb trees for a living after you read it!

Out on a Limb: A tree-climber's tale of the hard and risky work of saving whitebark pines.


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