Pisgah National Forest, Davidson River Area, NC

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bbeduhn
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Re: Pisgah National Forest, Davidson River Area, NC

Post by bbeduhn » Mon Apr 10, 2017 12:30 pm

Josh,
I don't have any Biltmore ash photos from Looking Glass. If I would have to guess, I would say mature trees number about a dozen or so. There is one rather large ash. Horse Cove by John Rock might also be a good spot. White and Biltmore reside there in greater numbers than at Looking Glass but they're still sparse. I noticed a number of pink ribbons just below the taller trees on the eastern flank of Looking Glass. I don't know what they're for as there is no road for logging purposes.
Brian

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Erik Danielsen
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Re: Pisgah National Forest, Davidson River Area, NC

Post by Erik Danielsen » Mon Apr 10, 2017 3:17 pm

Oftentimes when I encounter bright ribbons tied to vegetation in the woods, they're markers left by botanists or other researchers to help them locate populations of threatened wildflowers that they monitor annually, etc, or as a marker of the corner of an existing study plot. I've even participated in leaving a few!

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bbeduhn
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Re: Pisgah National Forest, Davidson River Area, NC

Post by bbeduhn » Thu Dec 13, 2018 1:15 pm

Steep Slope along Davidson River, across from Moore Cove on lower slope of Looking Glass Mountain

I'd driven by this spot many times before but just recently noticed how lush it appears. Despite not being a cove, it definitely has rich soils. I had the choice to either bushwhack through 100+ yards of rhodo hell or find a way to cross the river. A fallen log helped me out but I impaled one leg in the process and barely kept myself out of the water. A leg gash is always a nice souvenir.

tulip 149.6' 144.6' 143.0' 138.7'
basswood 119.2' 118.1' 117.6'
cucumber 129.2' 125.8'
sugar maple 123.5' 104.1'
black birch 106.0' 103.2' 102.9'
beech 117.9' 109.4'
red maple 118.6'
red oak 122.0'
yellow birch 86.9'

The sugar maple was a bit of a surprise that close to the river but they are present at quite a few sites in the Davidson River area, just in very small numbers.

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bbeduhn
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Re: Pisgah National Forest, Davidson River Area, NC

Post by bbeduhn » Thu Dec 13, 2018 1:26 pm

Coontree Loop and Picnic Area

Two coves along the loop are impressive. One has a little old growth beech grove near the very top. The beeches are impressive from below but they didn't turn out to be nearly as tall as they appeared. The white oaks in that same cove are quite impressive.

white pine 146.5'
sycamore 125.3' 124.9'
beech 121.7' 114.4' 108.6'
white oak 132.9' 132.0' 127.3' 126.0' 121.9'
red oak 135.3' 133.5'
mockernut h 121.6' 108.3'
bitternut h 139.3' 129.1'
pignut h 117.7' 112.7'
basswood 114.2' 110.7'
hemlock 98.7'
shortleaf p 120.9' 115.0' 115.0'
tulip 144.6' 142.9' 142.5' 138.6' 138.6' 138.3' 138.2' 127.6' (old growth)

rucker 10 = 130.58'

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bbeduhn
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Re: Pisgah National Forest, Davidson River Area, NC

Post by bbeduhn » Fri Dec 14, 2018 12:44 pm

Davidson River Watershed Rucker Index

Lirio tulip 170.8'
Pinus strobus 155.1'
Carya glabra 152.1'
Carya alba 148.5'
Carya ovalis 146.8'
Quercus rubra 143.7'
Robinia pseudo 142.7'
Tilia heterophylla 142.3'
Magnolia acuminata 142.0'
Acer rubrum 140.8'

Quercus montana 140.3'
Quercus alba 139.6'
Fraxinus americana 139.6'
Carya cordiformis 139.3'
Platanus occident 138.7'
Fraxinus biltmoreana 138.0'
Fagus americana 137.2'
Tsuga canadensis 133.9'
Quercus velutina 130.1'
Acer saccharum 123.5'

R 20 = 142.25'

R 10 = 148.48'

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bbeduhn
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Re: Pisgah National Forest, Davidson River Area, NC

Post by bbeduhn » Mon Mar 23, 2020 10:39 am

I spent a couple of days in the Davidson River area last week. I checked on a few records and explored a few spots I hadn't been to before. The Rucker continues to climb with updates on tall individuals in addition to new finds. The mockernut is now up to 150.3'. A new record height red oak at 157.0' was found and a much taller white pine was located.

Looking Glass Rock

Pinus strobus 143.6' 141.4'

Cat Gap Loop along Davidson River

Pinus strobus 162.4' new
remeasures 152.9' 152.0' 150.6'

Horse Cove

Lirio tulip 157.7' 153.9' 152.6' 146.5'
Pinus strobus 149.4'
Carya ovalis 126.2' 121.6'
Carya glabra 140.0' 136.5' 131.1' 129.3' 128.7'
Carya alba 150.3' (state record, #2 in nation) 131.0' 128.6' 122.9'
Fraxinus Bilrmore 119.6'
Tilia hetero 128.0' 122.2'
Quercus rubra 136.9' 133.0' 132.6' 123.0' 121.2'
Quercus alba 125.2'
Magnolia acuminata 141.6'
Fagus grandifolia 117.9'

East Horse Cove

This was a new spot for me. I didn't pay close enough attention to the architecture of this cove on the map. What appeared to be a side cove choked out with rhododendron, was, in fact, the main part of the cove. I was extremely disappointed at that point and turned back, but made sure to hit the other side of the cove by the entrance. I also passed under a very tall red hickory that I missed on my way up the cove. So, only a fraction of the cove was explored, but it turned out to be very fruitful, despite the initial frustrations. Tulips struggled in the parts I explored with the exception of the slope where the red oak resides. The 157.0' presents a new height record, but the Welch Branch red oak likely tops it by now. The white pine is the tallest pine in Davidson so far and matches the tallest tulip. I have removed the 170' tulip from King Creek, as it is actually in a different watershed that flows directly into the French Broad River.

Quercus rubra 157.0' 138.0' 132.6'
Lirio tulip 147.6' 146.0' 142.8' 140.7'
Pinus strobus 167.5' 146.3' 145.9' 144.4' 142.5'
Carya ovalis 144.3' 122.1'
Carya glabra 124.7'
Robinia pseudo 108.1'
Pinus rigida 115.7'
Oxydendron arboreum 85.1'


White Pines Group Camp

A short trail extends across the road from the group camp area and a nice grove of white pines grows at the intersection of the main road and Avery Creek Road.

Trail

Pinus strobus 144.1' 142.8'
Tsuga canadensis 122.6'
Quercus rubra 128.4' 127.9'
Quercus velotina 123.3'
Carya ovalis 125.0'
Lirio tulip 143.7'
Fagus grandif 124.7'
Betula lenta 105.5'

White pine grove

Pinus strobus 153.5' 150.9' 150.2' 144.8' 143.6' 143.4' 142.1' 141.6' 141.1'


Sycamore Flats

Lirio tulip 149.4' 143.2'
Plat occid 135.7' 134.5'

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bbeduhn
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Re: Pisgah National Forest, Davidson River Area, NC

Post by bbeduhn » Tue Mar 24, 2020 8:02 am

Some updated Rucker indices:

The Davidson River area can be divided into many subsites. John Rock and Looking Glass Rock are two such sites. John Rock is divided into individual coves, Horse Cove, East Horse Cove and the cove on the western side of the mountain. That cove hasn't yielded high numbers as of yet. East Horse Cove still needs some work.

John Rock

Horse Cove 144.32'

1. white pine 162.4'
2. tuliptree 159.5'
3. pignut hickory 152.1'
4. mockernut hickory 150.3'
5. basswood 142.3'
6. cucumbertree 142.0'
7. red oak 138.8'
8. white ash 136.6'
9. beech 130.6'
10. white oak 128.6'

John Rock overall 147.49'

1. white pine 167.5'
1. tuliptree 157.7'
3. red oak 157.0'
4. pignut hickory 152.1'
5. mockernut hickory 150.3'
6. red hickory 146.8'
7. basswood 142.3'
8. cucumbertree 142.0'
9. white ash 136.6'
10. beech 130.6'

Looking Glass Rock 144.53'

1. tuliptree 167.5'
2. white pine 152.9'
3. red oak 143.5'
4. pignut hickory 143.2'
5. black locust 142.7'
6. red maple 140.8'
7. mockernut hickory 139.8'
8. basswood 139.7'
9. Biltmore ash 138.0'
10. beech 137.2'

Davidson River overall 150.9'

1. white pine 167.5'
1. tuliptree 167.5'
3. red oak 157.0'
4. pignut hickory 152.3'
5. mockernut hickory 150.3'
6. red hickory 146.8'
7. black locust 142.7'
8. basswood 142.3'
9. cucumbertree 142.0'
10. red maple 140.8'

As you can see, John Rock and Looking Glass Rock dominate the overall Rucker index for Davidson. They are both granite monoliths. I don't know the significance of that fact but the soils around each are stellar.

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bbeduhn
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Re: Pisgah National Forest, Davidson River Area, NC

Post by bbeduhn » Tue Mar 31, 2020 12:20 pm

Sycamore Flats

Sycamore Flats is an area near the entrance to Davidson River. It is bisected by power lines. Along the power line cut, many of the taller tulips reside. Much of the area is dominated by tulips but many other species grow along the river, even a few mountain silverbells.

Tuliptree 150.0' 149.4' 145.1'
sycamore 138.8' 133.4'
red oak 128.2'
black oak 99.6'

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