Monday, January 18, 2010

North Fork of the Shoshone

The North Fork of the Shoshone River flows from the mountains on the eastern edge of Yellowstone National Park down to the Buffalo Bill reservoir just west of Cody. The North Fork cuts through the Absaroka volcanic field, and the resulting landscapes range from sheer cliffs to rocky spires. Much of the 50 mile stretch of river runs through the Shoshone National Forest. Bighorn sheep come down to lower elevation during the winter and graze by the highway. A small group of bison from Yellowstone stay on the North Fork year round. Elk and deer are common. Grizzly and black bears frequent the North Fork, and wolves move through the area. (Here is an earlier posting of a griz on the North Fork.) Recently the pine trees have been devastated by the Pine Bark Beetle, a small beetle which girdles a tree and kills it. In places upwards of 75% of the trees have been affected.

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