Plateau on the Radio: Episode 40 The San Francisco Peaks

Listen To or Download Episode 40 HERE...

The San Francisco Peaks - Photograph by Kate Graham

Join us this week as we celebrate the unique beauty of the San Francisco Peaks, in northern Arizona.
Our guest is author and ecologist Gwendolyn Waring, who recently put out a wonderful book titled 'The Natural History of the San Francisco Peaks', and this book is a thorough one, from the formation of the Peaks through multiple eruptions over several million years, to the Pleistocene era and the glacial impacts on the mountain itself, to many of the plants and animals and fungi that made their way to this isolated mountain island and somehow managed to survive. It is beautifully written, mixing science with love, and is a book that anyone could pick up and truly enjoy no matter what.

Gwendolyn shares some experiences on the San Francisco Peaks, discusses the adaptation that many species have made to survive in this often inhospitable environment, talks about the future of the peaks with climate change and mind, and so much more. A truly remarkable person, whose science and life experience on the Plateau and beyond is vast indeed.

Quaking Aspen off the 151 on the slopes of the San Francisco Peaks.
Photograph by Kate Graham.
Also, a spotlight on the Quaking Aspen, the San Francisco Peaks Groundsel, and we share the voices of the Star School students and staff, an off the grid charter school in Northern Arizona, who created a film titled 'Dook'o'oosliid' all about their connection to the sacred San Francisco Peaks.

And for High Desert Jamboree we play some mountain music for you, and hear some memories of the Peaks by resident forager of This is the Colorado Plateau; Ashley Doyle, and local photographer Kate Graham.

The San Francisco Peaks as viewed from the high desert of the
volcanic field. Photograph by Frank Schively.
Further Information and Reading:

A Natural History of the Intermountain West by Gwendolyn Waring

Doo'ko'oosliid - Short Film by the middle school students of the Star School

Species mentioned by Gwendylon Waring and the host:

San Francisco Peaks Groundsel - Packera franciscana

Corkbark Fir - Abies lasiocarpa var. arizonica

Limber PinePinus flexilis

Southwestern White Pine - Pinus strobiformis

Quaking AspenPopulus tremuloides

American Pipit

Clark's Nutcracker

American Three-toed Woodpecker

Mexican Spotted Owl

Red Squirrel