Karen Trofka

Living in Fort Collins, Colorado for almost 14 years has taught me to appreciate and enjoy nature.  In the past, my family would often drive through the mountains on Sunday afternoons, and I have enjoyed snowshoeing, camping, backpacking, and hiking in the Rocky Mountain and Roosevelt National Forest.  Because of my experience with the mountains, it is not easy for me to dismiss that the view has become less attractive due to many of the pine trees, and in some places it seems like all of the trees, have been affected by the recent Mountain pine beetles outbreak.  My awareness has been increased by my father who is currently a forestry master’s student at Colorado State University.  On hikes in the mountains, my dad will point out trees to my sisters and I, telling us what kind they are, show us which ones have diseases, and of course taking many pictures –doing all three almost to the point of being annoying.  I also am a student at CSU but as an undergraduate English major.  I took an Environmental Conservation class at CSU when a freshman.  I am very busy with my studies, but love to go into the mountains every chance I am offered.  Holding to my belief that people need to help nature when it is possible, I have done research into the topic of pine beetles and the beetle kill.


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