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Inside an ancient forest: Surrounded by 4,000-year-old trees in VR

Inside an ancient forest: Surrounded by 4,000-year-old trees in #VR

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    Share This Story!Let friends in your social network know what you are reading aboutInside an ancient forest: Surrounded by 4,000-year-old trees in VRFrom the building of the Egyptian pyramids to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius that buried Pompeii to the collapse of the Mayan civilization, Methuselah has lived through them all.Sent!A link has been sent to your friend’s email address.Posted!A link has been posted to your Facebook feed.
  • Inside an ancient forest: Surrounded by 4,000-year-old trees in VRJesse Ryan, USA TODAY NETWORK
    Published 6:45 p.m. ET July 27, 2017 | Updated 9:53 p.m. ET July 27, 2017This is a 360° video experience.
  • USA TODAY NETWORKAncient Bristlecone Pine Forest, California(Photo: USA TODAY NETWORK)From the building of the Egyptian pyramids to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius that buried Pompeii to the collapse of the Mayan civilization, Methuselah has lived through them all.
  • At roughly 4,800 years old, this Great Basin bristlecone pine is one of the oldest trees in world.Methuselah grows nearly two miles above sea level in California’s Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest.
  • In turn, the ability of bristlecones to withstand inhospitable environments may contribute to their longevity.While many people know Methuselah as the most senior tree in Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest, that status may actually belong to a neighbor.

From the building of the Egyptian pyramids to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius that buried Pompeii to the collapse of the Mayan civilization, Methuselah has lived through them all.

@RickKing16: Inside an ancient forest: Surrounded by 4,000-year-old trees in #VR

From the building of the Egyptian pyramids to the eruption of Mount Vesuvius that buried Pompeii to the collapse of the Mayan civilization, Methuselah has lived through them all. At roughly 4,800 years old, this Great Basin bristlecone pine is one of the oldest trees in world.

Methuselah grows nearly two miles above sea level in California’s Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest. It’s been in good company over the past several thousand years. A number of trees in this protected area of the White Mountains are over 4,000 years old. Wander amongst these hardy plants with VRtually There in the video below.

Great Basin bristlecone pines are among the longest living organisms on the planet. The species thrives on exposed slopes in arid climates and rocky soils. Their twisted trunks are shaped by the strong winds they endure at high elevations. The challenging conditions they call home means that competition for water and nutrients is scarce. In turn, the ability of bristlecones to withstand inhospitable environments may contribute to their longevity.

While many people know Methuselah as the most senior tree in Ancient Bristlecone Pine Forest, that status may actually belong to a neighbor. Researchers from Rocky Mountain Tree-Ring Research claim to have discovered an even older tree, over 5,000 years old, nearby. The exact locations of both bristlecones remain secret to protect them from vandalism.

Travel to eastern California to see these remarkable trees up close in the video above.

For the ideal experience, view in 360 degrees on your mobile phone or in VR headsets such as Google cardboard or Daydream. Subscribe to VRtually There on YouTube and browse the “Virtual Reality” section of the USA TODAY app (iOS | Android) or download our VR Stories Daydream app to catch three new episodes every week.

And whatever you do, don’t forget to look around.

Inside an ancient forest: Surrounded by 4,000-year-old trees in VR

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