ENVIRONMENTThe reasons why bristlecone pines have been
discovered comparatively recently are remote location of the territory they
occupy and harsh weather conditions at higher elevations that are unfriendly to
Bristlecone pines in GBNP, Nevada.
Pinus longaeva grow in isolated groves on arid and windswept
mountain slopes at and just below tree-line at
elevations of 6,760 ft (2060 m) to 12,000 ft (3,700 m). Summer is very short
at these elevations. Sudden storms with snow and ice along with up to 60 mph
winds make mountain climbing treacherous. Winter temperatures plunge below 0°F. Bristlecone pines are most
common on outcrops of
(carbonate substrate), but is found in limited environments on other rock types
(sandstone, quartzite). However, its distribution is restricted to north-facing
descents on igneous and clastic types of rock. Dolomite is an alkaline substrate.
It has higher moisture content than the surrounding bedrock, though low in
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