A video series highlighting the mountain pine beetle epidemic is now available online. Our Future Forests: Beyond Bark Beetles is a series of 10 short videos (all are under six and a half minutes) exploring the responses and the effects of the beetle outbreak. The films emphasize impacted user groups and what the U.S. Forest Service and others are doing in response to the bark beetles.

The series has had multiple successful showings in Laramie, Saratoga and Steamboat Springs over the last month, and hundreds of people have attended.

In the films, viewers meet a variety of people who are impacted by the beetles including hunters, rock climbers, fire lookouts, city water managers, foresters and more.

We are hoping the public will look at the beetle epidemic in a little bit of a different light than it’s been looked at it the past.

The videos were all filmed in Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests.  Locations include Bear River Corridor, Sierra Madre, Hahns Peak Lake, Rob Roy Reservoir, Vedauwoo, Laramie Peak and others. Acclaimed videographer Morgan Heim shot and produced the films.

According to Aaron Voos, public affairs specialist with the U.S. Forest Service, the forest service hopes the videos can help educate the public on what the beetle epidemic is and what it means for the forests.

“We are hoping the public will look at the beetle epidemic in a little bit of a different light than it’s been looked at it the past,” Voos says. "There are a lot of different ways the forest changes over the years, and that change has happened previously and will happen again in the future.”

Voos says the films were a great collaboration of partnership between the Medicine Bow-Routt National Forests and the University of Wyoming Ruckelhaus Institute. He says it is a unique project, and partnerships of this scale are not very common. He also noted that this is just one prong of a four pronged project to educate people about pine beetles.

The films are available for public viewing and sharing at BeyondBarkBeetles.org.