A tremendous loss of spruce and aspen trees could make up the next chapter in the drastic transformation of Colorado's forests after the mountain pine beetle eats itself out of house and home.
When Charlie Cammer built his wife, Barb, a bookcase out of blue-stain wood eight years ago, he couldn't have been prepared for her response.
Close your eyes, and a 3,000-acre wildfire on the banks of the New Fork River in Wyoming's Bridger Wilderness crackles deceptively, like a soothing campfire. But any sense of security is shattered quickly by the blaze's more violent noises.
At Rockin's River Resort north of Prince George, British Columbia, Horst Schulz is experiencing a consequence not often associated with the mountain pine beetle epidemic.
Some lament, others capitalize on beetle epidemic
In the backwoods of the Roosevelt National Forest in northern Larimer County, woods boss Jerry Heggie has barely introduced himself before he starts hauling the U.S. Forest Service over the coals.
Electricity presents bigger hurdles than heat
Oak Creek and Milner are on the cutting edge of a new energy frontier.
Climate change, forest management fuel beetles' shocking spread across Rockies
In a laboratory at the University of Northern British Columbia in Prince George, a moving plate jostles eight test tubes inside a mirrored glass box. Bacteria in the test tubes are being used to grow the mountain pine beetle genes responsible for producing the insect's chemical defenses against lower temperatures.
Randy Hampton doesn't mean to downplay the seriousness of Colorado's mountain pine beetle epidemic - especially considering the serious fire and erosion concerns it presents - but he says "it hasn't risen to the crisis level for wildlife."
Communities cope with reality of unprecedented beetle epidemic
There's nothing quite as serene as lying under a stand of lodgepole pine trees. Their fallen needles pad the ground, choking the forest floor and smothering other growth between the slender trunks.
If anyone has a newfound appreciation for the dangers posed by dead, standing trees, it's Sheila Wright, development director for Rocky Mountain Youth Corps.