2014 GSA Annual Meeting in Vancouver, British Columbia (19–22 October 2014)

Paper No. 98-4
Presentation Time: 9:00 AM

MONITORING MOUNTAIN LAKES AT MOUNT RAINIER NATIONAL PARK AND THE NORTH COAST AND CASCADES NETWORK


GOODMAN, Arianna1, LOFGREN, Rebecca1, SAMORA, Barbara1, WRIGHT, Ben2 and ANDERSON, Scott1, (1)Mount Rainier National Park, 55210 238th Ave E, Ashford, WA 98304, (2)Mount Rainier National Park, 55210 238th Ave E, arianna.goodman@gmail.com

The North Coast and Cascades Network (NCCN) includes three large parks (Mount Rainier National Park, North Cascades National Park, and Olympic National Park) as well as four smaller national parks that cooperatively conduct ecological monitoring under the NPS Inventory and Monitoring Program. Mount Rainier National Park, located in the southern Cascades in western Washington, encompasses over 95,000 ha and hosts roughly two million visitors per year. The park contains 26 named glaciers, 470 rivers and streams, and over 400 lakes and ponds.

Mountain lakes are both essential park ecosystems and integration sites for the effects of anthropogenic and nonanthropogenic influences. Factors influencing mountain lakes include atmospheric pollutants, visitor impacts, the introduction of nonnative fish species, climate change, fire, glacial activities, and wind. Highly beloved by visitors, these lakes nevertheless face stressors due to climate change and contamination from industrialized areas. Through continuous temperature monitoring and annual field sampling of water chemistry, lake level, zooplankton, amphibians, fish, benthic macroinvertebrates, NCCN's Mountain Lakes Monitoring Program provides baseline characterization of a core of mountain lakes in Mount Rainier and other NCCN parks and will assist with the detection and quantification of substantive trends in lake chemistry and ecology. Contunuous weather and air quality monitoring at stations throughout the NCCN supplements data collected from lake sites.