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Orchids - Glacier's Precious Beauties: June 7, 2020

Orchids: Glacier’s Precious Beauties

Instructor: Steve Wirt, B.S.

Sunday, June 7, 2020

This course will provide an exciting introduction to the ecology and identification of some of the most secretive and beautiful of Glacier National Park’s flora. In addition to learning to recognize and identify orchids in the field, we will discuss the importance of maintaining specific habitat requirements for each of the species we encounter. We will hopefully see ten to fifteen different orchid species.

Meeting Place: Glacier Park Field Camp Meeting Hall (see campus map).

Meeting Time: Sunday, June 7th at 8:30am

Tentative Itinerary (subject to change): After a brief introduction and slides, we will travel to several locations along the Camas Road and upper McDonald Creek. We will try to visit a diversity of habitats in order to see several different orchid species. Our exact destinations will depend on weather conditions and on which plants are blooming in early June. The course will end by about 5 PM and will not be cancelled due to weather.

Food: Students are responsible for all their own food. Please bring a sack lunch for the field, snacks, and water. For students staying overnight at camp, we have a kitchen in which you can cook and limited cabinet space for keeping food.

Required Equipment (all seasons): Sturdy walking shoes or hiking boots, daypack, water (2 liters minimum), raincoat, warm Layers

Weather: This course will not be canceled due to weather. Please check the weather forecast in advance and refer to the gear list for proper attire.

Physical Requirements: Easy hikes. We’ll be taking several short hikes searching for orchids, but it will not be rigorous. We may be off-trail, so be prepared to walk over logs, through brush, and in the woods where orchids like to grow.

Transportation during course: We will be traveling in a Glacier Institute vehicle.

Accommodations: Lodging can be purchased for $35/person/night at the Glacier Institute Field Camp. Facilities include bunkhouses, a community bathhouse, a library and a kitchen. Please call the registrar at 406-755-1211 to book lodging.

Academic Credit: Please see our ‘2020 Academic Credit’ Link on our website to learn about OPI credit and FVCC and UM credit for our courses. There is a $20 administrative fee to receive OPI renewal units with FVCC.

Recommended Reading:

We will provide handouts and pamphlets during the course and display several pertinent books for further reference. The following books will provide good background reading:

Plants of Waterton-Glacier National Parks. Richard J. Shaw and Danny On. Rocky Mountain Wild Flowers. Porsild, National Museums of Canada.