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Manitoba from the Air
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Description
Natural Vegetation in North Central Riding Mountain National Park

The Vermilion River 1 drains north and is joined by a right bank tributary 2 which is in turn joined by tributaries from the east (3 and 4). The landscape is covered by mixed-woods with light-toned deciduous trees: aspen (Populus tremuloides), balsam (Populus balsamifera),  (Populus balsamifera), and birch (Betula papyrifera) in the west 5. Rounded crowns produce a mottled texture 6. In the south 7 dark-toned coniferous trees—black spruce (Picea mariana) and white spruce (Picea glauca)—are more common, and in the northeast many isolated coniferous trees are identified from their dark tone and triangular shadows 8. Along the Vermilion River are light-toned areas of grassland and aquatic vegetation 9 and a series of dark-toned ponds 10 along the eastern tributary. These are the result of beaver dams—light-toned strings 11 across the river. Beavers (Castor canadensis) like all forms of wildlife are protected within the park, but controversy has erupted when beaver dams have broken, resulting in flooding of agricultural land beyond the park boundary.

The only evidence of human influence is a trail (The Strathclair Trail) 12 trending north/south across the region. This is a warden patrol trail. A small star-shaped area 13 west of the Vermilion defies easy explanation.

Figure 5.14

Natural Vegetation in North Central Riding Mountain National Park