This landscape spread before us is not uncommon in states to the south but in Idaho, it’s unique. It’s the only place you’ll find these stands of junipers and their particular, herbal smells. “Seven pinyon-juniper woodland communities are recognized as occurring exclusively in Idaho; all are ranked most rare.”¹
Some of the gnarled trees, like one we passed on our way up here, are over 500 years old. Others we passed will remain standing long after we’re gone — perhaps after this nation is gone. What will the lives be like of people then brushing past the same branches we’ve touched today, looking out at this same horizon?
¹ Idaho Fish & Game, “Pinyon-Juniper Woodland Classification and Description”: fishandgame.idaho.gov/ifwis/idnhp/cdc_pdf/juos rpt.pdf