Jul 24, 2024  
2021-22 Catalog 
2021-22 Catalog [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

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BIOL 125 - Wilderness Biology

5 Credits
A field course emphasizing natural history and plant identification in the mountains of the Pacific Northwest. Topics include local geology, weather, plants, animals and general ecology. Includes day hikes and overnight backpacking trips.


Quarters Typically Offered
Summer Day
Designed to Serve Highline students and general community
Active Date 20210403T10:07:47

Grading System Decimal Grade
Variable Credit Yes Range 1-5
Class Limit 24
Contact Hours: Lecture 22 Lab 66
Total Contact Hours 88
Degree Distributions:
  • Science
  • Science Lab

Course Outline
  • Biomes and ecosystems
  • Survey of geology and weather
  • Survey of fungi and lower plants
  • Survey of higher plants
  • Survey of animals
  • Hikes and overnight backpacks in the Cascade mountains

Student Learning Outcomes
Explain how to prepare for hiking and backpacking in natural areas of Washington State.

Explain and practice the concept of “Leave No Trace” wilderness behavior on hikes and backpacking trips.

Identify common native plants and animals found in undisturbed natural areas of Washington.

Describe the basic topography of Washington State, including the Olympic and Cascades mountain ranges and Puget Sound.

Identify the major natural areas of Washington, including National Parks, National Forests, and Wilderness areas.

Explain how plate tectonics and the Cascade Subduction Zone have shaped the topography of Washington State.

Describe the role of glaciation and the Ice Age in shaping the Pacific Northwest.

Describe how a marine climate and weather patterns influence the distribution of plants and animals in Washington.

Explain what creates local weather patterns such as the “Rain Shadow” and “Puget Sound Convergence Zone”.

Explain how the alpine zone, subalpine zone and trees are distributed differently on North vs. South facing mountain slopes.

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