The Colorado Plateau is endowed with a world-class collection of geological eye candy, like the Technicolor badlands of Arizona's Petrified Forest. But conflicts arise when some of that geology is useful for more than a grand view.
There's not a lot left of Flagstaff's old farming tradition. It's a surprise to many living here today. But, this community - at an elevation of 7,000 feet - with it's short growing season, unpredictable moisture and harsh winds, was a farming hub for some 80 years.
It's been 3 years since the Schultz Fire seared more than 15,000 acres on the San Francisco Peaks north of Flagstaff. About 2/3 of that area, mostly ponderosa pine and mixed conifer forest, was moderately to severely burned. But native plant species have been helping to restore the area.
You can't always tell a book by its cover - it's a cliche', but it's bearing out in the world of biology. As biologists peer ever more closely inside the book of life, they are learning there may be far more species of plants and animals than anyone previously thought.
More than a century ago, a Harvard undergraduate named Alfred Vincent Kidder came out west. He came to volunteer at some archaeological sites that had just been excavated - places like Mesa Verde and other ancient ruins.
Nicknamed Ted, he had little more than a tape measure, a cheap compass and a Kodak camera. But the experience changed his life - and the course of southwestern archaeology.
The world’s largest ponderosa pine forest stretches across higher elevations from the San Francisco Peaks to the Arizona/New Mexico border. But in the last century, human intervention has threatened its health.