Rocky Mountain National Park Disturbed Lands

Construction and rehabilitation of buildings, roads, and other structures in the park are always carefully planned to minimize damage to park resources. New projects generally are limited to the existing disturbed footprint. Before a project gets underway, the area is assessed for archeological sites, other cultural resources, and for sensitive habitats that might support rare plants or animals. After any construction, the surrounding area is re-vegetated using plant material previously gathered from the area. The park has its own greenhouse so that local seed can be grown into plants to restore disturbed areas. In alpine areas, tundra sod is removed, stored and then replaced after a project is completed.Some disturbances are of long standing, and are difficult, if not impossible, to erase. For instance, the Moraine Park area once encompassed a small village. Hay field cultivation, and even a past golf course, are evident to the discerning eye.

Water projects that pre-date the park, such as the Grand Ditch, have resulted in significant land disturbance. In addition to changes along the Ditch, water flows to the Colorado River, and adjoining wetlands have been disrupted altering the seasonal fluctuations in water level, including the scouring of the river bed by spring floods. This in turn has led to changes in riparian communities.

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November's Featured Park
The North Cascades have long been known as the North American Alps. Characterized by rugged beauty, this steep mountain range is filled with jagged peaks, deep valleys, cascading waterfalls and glaciers. North Cascades National Park Service Complex contains the heart of this mountainous region in three park units which are all managed as one and include North Cascades National Park, Ross Lake and Lake Chelan National Recreation Areas.
November's Animal
Badgers are animals of open country. Their oval burrows (ten inches across and four to six inches high) are familiar features of grasslands on sandy or loamy soils of the eastern plains or shrub country in mountain parks or western valleys.