Famous Western Trees Don Bertolette & Edward Frank
August 26, 2009


Interested in "Impressive trees on public lands"?

Those of you that belong ot AAA and have a subscription to their bi-monthly (?)periodical Via might have passed up their "On the Road ~Readers' Favorite".

They list 7 western sights worthy of a road trip if nearby, or a 'virtual tour' by going to:

1)Banyan tree at www.kaanapali-beach-maui-.com/banyan-tree-lahaina.html

  Banyon Tree Park  http://www.hawaiiweb.com/maui/html/sites/banyan_tree.html
  Photo:  http://gohawaii.about.com/od/mauiphotos/ig/Lahaina-Maui-Photos/lahain...
  Lahaina's Giant Banyan Tree, Maui, Hawaii, U.S.A.  http://www.geocities.com/intrepidberkeleyexplorer/Page13D8.html

2)Courghouse Square Giant Sequoias at www.oregon.com/history/oregon_heritage_trees_portland.cfm

  This site lists several impressive trees in the Portland Area.

3)Giant Spruce of Cape Perpetua at www.fs.fed.us/r6/siuslaw/recreation/tripplanning/capeperpetua

  Giant Spruce of Cape Perpetua Heritage Tree

  "Half a century before Christopher Columbus sailed to the Americas, a tiny Sitka spruce began its life nourished by a nurse log on the Oregon Coast. Today, it is the largest and oldest tree in the Cape Perpetua Scenic Area of the Siuslaw National Forest. Nearly 600 years old, it stands over 185 feet tall and has a circumference of 40 feet." (Oregon Heritage Tree Program)

  The tree is surrounded by history.

    a.. Indigenous people lived nearby at the mouth of Cape Creek for 1500 years.
    In the 1850's the Coos and Lower Umpqua people were forcibly relocated here to the Coast Reservation.

    b.. In the 1930's the Civilian Conservation Corps set up a camp and build the first trail to the Giant Spruce, probably along the route of an ancient Indian trail.

    c.. The Giant Spruce was dedicated as a Heritage Tree on September 15, 2007

4)Octopus Tree at www.oregonstateparks.org/park_181.php

  Nice photos of the tree are found at:  http://www.oregoncommunitytrees.org/octopus.pdf

&  The Octopus Tree is a Sitka spruce (Picea sitchensis) that did not develop into a massive, single trunk tree. It is instead made up of six large candelabra-type limbs that extend horizontally as much as 30 feet from the massive central trunk before they turn upward.  Called The Council Tree by Native Tillamook Indians, it may be a burial tree. The tribes in the Tillamook area reportedly placed their dead in the trees in canoes, but the trees first had to be prepared to hold them. Burial trees were forced, when young and pliable, into a horizontal position beyond which they grew upward. Once the pattern was set, the trees would continue to grow, eventually forming the shape characteristic of the Octopus Tree.

5)Shoe Tree at www.blog.travelnevada.com/articles/highway-505-shoe-tree-middlegate

  It is a Shoe Tree, http://www.roadsideamerica.com/tip/932 where hundreds of discarded sneakers and other footwear are tossed. The shoe tree blooms with polymer beauty.

&  The Shoe Tree at Middelgate Nevada http://www.roadtripamerica.com/roadside/middlegate-shoe-tree.htm This impressive cottonwood tree is located about two miles east of the town of Middlegate on US Highway 50 ("The Loneliest Highway in America") in Nevada. Its location is also notable in that it stands on the Pony Express Trail on the banks of Rock Creek in the Clan Alpine Mountains.  We haven't been able to pin down exactly when it began receiving shoe offerings -- our earliest photo documentation was provided by Mark Hemlinger in the summer of 2003.

6)Tree Rock at www.rockymountainroads.com/us030a__wy.html

  Laramie, Wyoming - Tree in the Rock- http://www.roadsideamerica.com/tip/11660  A roadside marker says it all: "This small pine tree that seems to be growing out of solid rock has fascinated travelers since the first train rolled past on the Union Pacific Railroad. It is said that the builders of the original railroad diverted the tracks slightly to pass by the tree as they laid rails across Sherman Mountain in 1867-69.

  Tree Rock Waymark http://www.waymarking.com/waymarks/WM1N8C

  Webshots http://travel.webshots.com/photo/1167595904051892115sRFnLn

7)Sillamette Mission Cottonwood at www.oregonstateparks.org/park_139.php

  Willamette Mission State Park - Nation's Largest Cottonwood http://www.daytrails.com/WillametteMissionCottonwood.html  Standing 158' high it is over 110' wide. The circumference at the base of the trunk is over 27'. It is estimated to be about 265 years old.


Among these URLs are giant sequoia, spruce, banyan, cottonwood, and for Ed's benefit, trees of historical significance.

For Will, the Octopus Tree may match most of the redwoods for number of 'reitterations'!!


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