Central Basin and Range

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The Central Basin and Range ecoregion is composed of northerly trending, fault-block ranges and intervening, drier basins. In the higher mountains, woodland, mountain brush, and scattered open forest are found. Lower elevation basins, slopes, and alluvial fans are either shrub- and grass-covered, shrub-covered, or barren. The potential natural vegetation, in order of decreasing elevation and ruggedness, is scattered western spruce-fir forest, juniper woodland, Great Basin sagebrush, and saltbush-greasewood. The Central Basin and Range is internally-drained by ephemeral streams and once contained ancient Lake Lahontan. In general, Ecoregion 13 is warmer and drier than the Northern Basin and Range (80) and has more shrubland and less grassland than the Snake River Plain (12). Soils grade upslope from mesic Aridisols to frigid Mollisols. The land is primarily used for grazing. In addition, some irrigated cropland is found in valleys near mountain water sources. The region is not as hot as the Mojave Basin and Range (14) and Sonoran Basin and Range (81) ecoregions and it has a greater percent of land that is grazed. (US Environmental Protection Agency. 2013)


Central Basin and Range







Land Use/Human Activities



US Environmental Protection Agency. 2013. Primary distinguishing characteristics of level iii ecoregions of the continental united states. https://www.epa.gov/eco-research/level-iii-and-iv-ecoregions-continental-united-states