Castilleja occidentalis is a common species of paintbrush in this part of the Rocky Mountains. Here it occurs in a stunning variety of colour forms, from its plain yellow form to specimens with white, yellow and various shades of pink and mauve all in the same inflorescence. It is possible that occasional hybridization with Castilleja rhexifolia, a purplish pink species found in the vicinity helps to enhance this palette.

As this area is right on the continental divide and near the Alberta border, you will encounter species not rarely seen in British Columbia. Species classified as rare by the BC Conservation Data Centre are: 

Astragalus vexilliflexus var. vexilliflexus

Carex incurviformis var. incurviformis

Carex rupicola

Claytonia megarhiza var. megarhiza

Erigeron ochroleucus

Melica spectabilis

Packera contermina

Potentilla glaucophylla var. perdissecta

Potentilla ovina var. ovina

Townsendia parryi


BC Species and Ecosystem Explorer

Pojar, J. and A. MacKinnon 2013. Alpine Plants of British Columbia, Alberta and Northwest North America. Lone Pine Publishing. 527 p.