Ghost Forest

Ron Niebrugge Alaska, Kenai Fjords, Photos, Travel 6 Comments

Ghost Forest

Ghost Forest, Kenai Fjords National Park, Alaska.

Everyone calls these standing dead trees “ghost forests”.  Don’t know if that is an official name, but it works for me.

These trees have been standing dead like this for over 40 years.  Pretty amazing given our wet environment – my fire wood ends up rotting after just 3 or 4 years.  So how did they die, and why are they still standing strong?

Well the land where these trees were living subsided substantially during the huge Good Friday Alaskan earthquake.  When the land dropped, the roots of these trees now reached, and began soaking up saltwater from the ocean.  This salt water eventually killed the tree, but preserved the wood, and that is why they are still standing today.

This grove was along Pedersen Lagoon, but there are similar groves of ghost forest all along the Kenai Fjords coast, as well as a few other parts of the Kenai Peninsula.

Comments 6

  1. so it is like Petrified wood then. It sounds similar to that “ghost tree” they have at the 17 mile drive. the salt spray made it white and it is dead. it didn’t look as interesting as it sounded though so I don’t have any photos of it.

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    You know I have seen that tree and I think you are right, it is similar – just on a bigger scale.

    Are you staying dry down there Richard? I figured you would be in the mountain photographing all the snow!


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