Western Native Tree Society - Origins

     The idea for WNTS was born in Aug 2001 on the patio of my daughter's prior home in Ogden, Utah. The idea was spawned between Don Bertolette, yours truly, and my daughter Celeste.
     From the start, it was obvious to me that Don would be the central figure and primary organizer of WNTS, but he would need a long time to figure out what the focus of WNTS should be. I had every confidence in Don that he would put the pieces together when the time was right. But as all who visit there and know, the Rocky Mountain west is a vast place with a lot of arid, semi-arid, and high altitude landscape. Big trees can be in rugged box canyons that are almost impossible to get to. Pack trips are required to get to some of the best places. And interest in big trees is spread pretty thin among westerners - especially in small western towns.

     Don has a big challenge on his hands and will need all the help he can get. For my part, I plan to focus my attention on the Black Hills. I am very familiar with them and from this summer's past trip that included the Black Hills, I realize that there is a story to be told and modified Rucker indices to be calculated (forget about a 10-species index). I'll likely spend a good deal of time in the Utah Wasatch and Uintahs also. That should keep me occupied. Anybody want dubs on other areas?

Bob Leverett

More comments about the origins of the Western Native Tree Society by Don Bertolette can be found here:  http://www.ents-bbs.org/viewtopic.php?f=159&t=2818 

Olympic National Park, Washington - photo by Ed Frank