Mountain Hemlock - Tsuga mertensiana
With its dense foliage and irregular shape, Mountain Hemlock is quite easily recognized in the high, snowy mountain habitats where it grows. In exposed sites, the trees become dwarfed, pruned and shaped by the wind. The needles are blue-green and surround the branch. The cones are up to 3 inches in length and purplish when young, brown as they mature. Primarily a northern tree, although also present in the Sierra Nevada, it grows from sea level to high elevations. The trees may reach 100 feet in height; the bark becomes grooved with age.