Fir at Crater Lake
Shasta Red Fir in yellow*
Red Fir in green
Fir distribution based on information
long, upright at treetop
ft. in southwest Oregon
grows throughout the
Sierras of California. The Red Fir that grows in Oregon is a
hybrid of Red Fir and Noble Fir.
It grows in the southern Cascades and Siskiyous, and is
Shasta Red Fir, Abies magnifica
x procera.* An easy
place to find Shasta Red Fir is on the rim of Crater Lake.
Shasta Red Fir has
needles that are like Noble Fir,
shaped like hockey sticks. The needles are
white lines on upper and lower surfaces. Unlike the flat needles of
Noble Fir, Shasta Red Fir needles are square, which allows you to roll
a needle between your fingers.
The cones sit
upright on the branch like other firs. The cones fall apart at
maturity, leaving a cone core spike on the branch. Shasta Red Fir cones
than Noble Fir cones and have whiskery
bracts that protrude beyond the scales, but the bracts are shorter than
Noble Fir. By contrast, the bracts do not protrude at all from Red Fir
The bark is smooth and brown becoming gray and broken
furrows on larger trees.
Red Fir is named
after Mt. Shasta. Other names: Shasta Fir.
*The Gymnosperm Database
and Oregon Flora
Project list these as Abies magnifica