Chalk Bluffs Natural Area

Last updated
Chalk Bluffs in the Pawnee National Grasslands, Weld County, Colorado Chalk Bluffs 2016-07-12 384.jpg
Chalk Bluffs in the Pawnee National Grasslands, Weld County, Colorado

The Chalk Bluffs is a barren chalk escarpment in the northeastern part of the U.S. state of Colorado, stretching from the Wyoming border east of I-25 to near the South Platte River in Logan County and Weld County. [1]

Contents

Geology

The Chalk Bluffs exposes the Ogallala, Fox Hills and Arikaree Formations. Miocene, Eocene and Paleocene vertebrate fossils are found. [1]

Ecology

Most of the escarpment lies within the Pawnee National Grasslands.

As the bluffs are primarily barren and protected from fire. However trees normally found in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains are found there, including: Ponderosa pine, Rocky Mountain juniper, limber pine, and mountain mahogany.

Numerous raptors nest on the cliffs including Swainson's hawks, ferruginous hawks, golden eagles, and prairie falcons. The bluffs are a favorite site for birdwatching. It has been recognized by the National Audubon Society as a site of "global importance".

Chalk Bluffs Natural Area

A 640-acre (2.6 km2) portion of the Chalk Bluffs in Weld County were set aside in September 2001 by the Colorado State Parks Natural Areas Program as the Chalk Bluffs Natural Area. [1]

Wind farm

The bluffs are adjacent to the Cedar Creek Wind Farm.

Related Research Articles

Rocky Mountains Major mountain range in western North America

The Rocky Mountains, also known as the Rockies, are a major mountain range located in western North America. The Rocky Mountains stretch 3,000 km (1,900 mi) in straight-line distance from the northernmost part of British Columbia, in western Canada, to New Mexico in the Southwestern United States. The northern terminus is near the Liard River, while the southernmost point is near Albuquerque, adjacent the Sandia–Manzano Mountains. Located within the North American Cordillera, the Rockies are distinct from the Pacific Coast Ranges, Cascade Range, and the Sierra Nevada, which all lie farther to the west.

Weld County, Colorado U.S. county in Colorado

Weld County is one of the 64 counties of the U.S. state of Colorado. As of the 2010 census, the population was 252,825. The county seat is Greeley.

Larimer County, Colorado U.S. county in Colorado

Larimer County is one of the 64 counties in the U.S. state of Colorado. As of the 2010 census, the population was 299,630. The county seat and most populous city is Fort Collins. The county was named for William Larimer, Jr., the founder of Denver.

Boulder County, Colorado U.S. county in Colorado

Boulder County is one of the 64 counties of the U.S. state of Colorado of the United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 294,567. The most populous municipality in the county and the county seat is Boulder.

Rocky Mountain National Park national park of the United States

Rocky Mountain National Park is an American national park located approximately 76 mi (122 km) northwest of Denver International Airport in north-central Colorado, within the Front Range of the Rocky Mountains. The park is situated between the towns of Estes Park to the east and Grand Lake to the west. The eastern and western slopes of the Continental Divide run directly through the center of the park with the headwaters of the Colorado River located in the park's northwestern region. The main features of the park include mountains, alpine lakes and a wide variety of wildlife within various climates and environments, from wooded forests to mountain tundra.

Mogollon Rim mountain range

The Mogollon Rim is a topographical and geological feature cutting across the U.S. state of Arizona. It extends approximately 200 miles (320 km), starting in northern Yavapai County and running eastward, ending near the border with New Mexico. It forms the southern edge of the Colorado Plateau in Arizona.

Pawnee National Grassland

Pawnee National Grassland is a United States National Grassland located in northeastern Colorado on the Colorado Eastern Plains. The grassland is located in the South Platte River basin in remote northern and extreme northeastern Weld County between Greeley and Sterling. It comprises two parcels totaling 193,060 acres (78,130 ha) largely between State Highway 14 and the Wyoming border. The larger eastern parcel lies adjacent to the borders of both Nebraska and Wyoming. It is administered in conjunction with the Arapaho-Roosevelt National Forest from the U.S. Forest Service office in Fort Collins, Colorado, with a local ranger district office in Greeley.

Mark Twain National Forest

Mark Twain National Forest (MTNF) is a U.S. National Forest located in the southern half of Missouri. MTNF was established on September 11, 1939. It is named for author Mark Twain, a Missouri native. The MTNF covers 3,068,800 acres (12,419 km2) of which 1,506,100 acres (6,095 km2) is public owned, 78,000 acres (320 km2) of which are Wilderness, and National Scenic River area. MTNF spans 29 counties and represents 11% of all forested land in Missouri. MTNF is divided into six distinct ranger districts: Ava-Cassville-Willow Springs, Eleven Point, Houston-Rolla, Cedar Creek, Poplar Bluff, Potosi-Fredericktown, and the Salem. The six ranger districts actually comprise nine overall unique tracts of forests. Its headquarters are in Rolla, Missouri.

Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument protected area in California

The Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument is a National Monument in southern California. It includes portions of the Santa Rosa and San Jacinto mountain ranges, the northernmost ones of the Peninsular Ranges system. The national monument covers portions of Riverside County, west of the Coachella Valley, approximately 100 miles (160 km) southeast of downtown Los Angeles.

The Office of Kentucky Nature Preserves is an agency of the Commonwealth of Kentucky in the United States dedicated to the protection of Kentucky's natural heritage. It oversees a statewide program of nature preserves, the Kentucky Wild Rivers Program, and the "Nature's Finest" license plate program of the Kentucky Heritage Land Conservation Fund Board. The program was formerly known as the "Kentucky State Nature Preserves Commission", from 1976 until a reorganization in 2018.

Pawnee Buttes

The Pawnee Buttes are two prominent buttes in northeastern Colorado. The west butte is located within the Pawnee National Grassland, while the east butte is on private land in Weld County. Rising approximately 300 feet (91 m) above the surrounding plains, the buttes are erosional remnants left standing in isolation as the surrounding High Plains surface has gradually worn away. The lower portions of the buttes are composed of relatively soft, clay-rich sedimentary rock called the Brule formation. The Brule formation is protected by an overlying layer of sandstone and conglomerate sediments called the Arikaree formation, which are more resistant to weathering.

Geography of Colorado Springs, Colorado

Colorado Springs geography describes geographical topics regarding the city of Colorado Springs, Colorado in El Paso County, Colorado. With 194.87 sq mi (504.7 km2) of land, it is the state's largest-sized city. Denver is the most populated city.

Dinosaur Ridge ridge in Colorado, United States

Dinosaur Ridge is a segment of the Dakota Hogback in the Morrison Fossil Area National Natural Landmark located in Jefferson County, Colorado, near the town of Morrison and just west of Denver.

Outline of Colorado Overview of and topical guide to Colorado

The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to the U.S. state of Colorado:

Ecology of the Rocky Mountains Ecology of the Rocky Mountain range in North America

The ecology of the Rocky Mountains is diverse due to the effects of a variety of environmental factors. The Rocky Mountains are the major mountain range in western North America, running from the far north of British Columbia in Canada to New Mexico in the southwestern United States, climbing from the Great Plains at or below 1,800 feet (550 m) to peaks of over 14,000 feet (4,300 m). Temperature and rainfall varies greatly also and thus the Rockies are home to a mixture of habitats including the alpine, subalpine and boreal habitats of the Northern Rocky Mountains in British Columbia and Alberta, the coniferous forests of Montana and Idaho, the wetlands and prairie where the Rockies meet the plains, a different mix of conifers on the Yellowstone Plateau in Wyoming and in the high Rockies of Colorado and New Mexico, and finally the alpine tundra of the highest elevations.

Bayshore Blufflands State Natural Area

Bayshore Blufflands State Natural Area is a Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources-designated State Natural Area of significant note for its grand scenery, unusual geology, rare plant and animal species. Containing more than 7 miles (11 km) of the Niagara Escarpment, the Bayshore Blufflands is an ecologically complex site with a diversity of plant communities both above and below the escarpment and a series of seeps and springs at the base of the bluff's talus slopes.

Palmer Park (Colorado Springs)

Palmer Park is a regional park in Colorado Springs, Colorado. Located at 3650 Maizeland Road, the park is several miles northeast of the downtown area. Elevation Outdoors Magazine named it Best Urban Park in its Best of Rockies 2017 list. One of Best of the Springs Expert Picks - Sports & Recreation by The Gazette, Seth Boster states that it may have the city's best views of Pikes Peak and a place "where an escape into deep nature is easy. It is strange and marvelous to look out at urban sprawl while perched on some high rock ledge, surrounded by rugged wilderness."

Front Range Urban Corridor Megaregion of the U.S. in the United States

The Front Range Urban Corridor is an oblong region of urban population located along the eastern face of the Southern Rocky Mountains, encompassing 18 counties in the US states of Colorado and Wyoming. The corridor derives its name from the Front Range, the mountain range that defines the western boundary of the corridor which serves as a gateway to the Rocky Mountains. The region comprises the northern portion of the Southern Rocky Mountain Front geographic area, which in turn comprises the southern portion of the Rocky Mountain Front geographic area of Canada and the United States. The Front Range Urban Corridor had an estimated population of 4,976,781 on July 1, 2018, an increase of +14.84% since the 2010 United States Census.. It is estimated that the population exceeded 5 million in 2019. Roughly 98% of the population within the entire urban corridor region is within Colorado and roughly 85% of Colorado's population resides within the urban corridor region.

References