Mountain landscapes show rapid evolution, especially at high altitudes, in response to current climate changes. In addition, the greater number of routes and trails made available and the increase in tourism have caused some impacts on mountain areas. Gradual soil erosion has been observed along some hiking trails, with the latter tending to deepen, and with stronger erosion where the trail cuts the slope. Where trails cross forested areas, trees can suffer root damage from foot trampling as roots become exposed. A dendrogeomorphological study was conducted on trees along two hiking trails in upper Valtellina (Italian Alps). On the first trail, in Valle dei Forni, European larches and stone pines, mostly with exposed roots, were sampled. A mean erosion rate of 2.7 mm/a, related to deepening of the footpath, was obtained, and various degrees of root growth disturbance along the trail were observed. In particular, the growth of many sampled roots shows an increase in ring width corresponding with the moment when root exposure occurred, followed, after 3–5 years, by rapid growth suppression. The exposure of many roots has taken place since the 1980s. No significant variations in stem growth were observed, even when there were exposed and damaged roots. Along the second trail, in Valle Alpisella, exposed roots of mountain pines were analysed. A mean erosion rate of 3.2–3.7 mm/a, related to the escarpments bordering the footpath, was obtained, while no significant changes were detected in root growth.
|Titolo:||Dendrogeomorphological analyses on exposed roots along two mountain hiking trails in the Central Italian Alps|
|Autori interni:||PELFINI, MANUELA (Primo)|
SANTILLI, MAURIZIO (Ultimo)
|Parole Chiave:||Dendrogeomorphology; Erosion; Hiking trail; Upper Valtellina|
|Settore Scientifico Disciplinare:||Settore GEO/04 - Geografia Fisica e Geomorfologia|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2006|
|Appare nelle tipologie:||01 - Articolo su periodico|