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Ecological Sections: Mono

Subsection 341Dg
Wassuck Range

This subsection comprises the Wassuck Range, which is just west of Walker Lake.  It is completely in Nevada and is included to complete the section.  The climate is cold and semi-arid to subhumid.  MLRA 26f.

Lithology and Stratigraphy.  The bedrock is mostly Mesozoic granitic and some Mesozoic volcanic and sedimentary rocks, and lesser amounts of Tertiary silicic ash-flow tuffs and tuffaceous sedimentary rocks.

Geomorphology.   Steep mountain slopes predominate in this subsection.  The mountain range is aligned north-south.  The elevation range is from about 4000 feet adjacent to Walker Lake up to 11,239 feet on Mount Grant.  Mass wasting, fluvial erosion, and freeze-thaw are the main geomorphic processes.

Soils.  The soils are mostly Typic and Lithic Xerorthents and Typic Xerochrepts, and lesser areas of Lithic Torriorthents, Mollic and Lithic Mollic Haplargids, shallow Mollic Durorthids, and Cryoborolls.  The soils are well drained.  Soil temperature regimes are mesic at lower and frigid at higher elevations with some cryic.  Soil moisture regimes are mostly aridic and xeric.

Vegetation.   The predominant natural plant communities, from low to high elevations, are Shadscale series, Big sagebrush series, Utah juniper series, and Singleleaf pinyon series.  Low sagebrush series occurs on shallow soil at higher elevations.  Curlleaf mountain mahogany series occurs at higher elevations.

Characteristic series by lifeform are not provided for this subsection.
Climate.  The mean annual precipitation is about 6 to 20 inches.  Much of the precipitation is snow.  Mean annual temperature is about 35 to 50 F.  The mean freeze-free period is in the range from 50 to 125 days.

Surface Water.  Runoff is rapid.  It drains to Walker Lake, either directly or through the Walker River.  Streams in the mountains are dry most of each year.  There are no natural lakes in the subsection. 

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