The most widespread western true fir, with dense, long-pointed, spirelike crown and rows of horizontal branches reaching nearly to base; shrubby at timberline. Height: 50-100 ft (15-30 m). Diameter: 1-2.5 ft (0.3-0.8 m). Needles: evergreen; flat, dark green, with whitish lines on both surfaces.
Subalpine zone of high mountains to timberline; forming spruce-fir forest with Engelmann spruce, and with other conifers.
Central Yukon and southeastern Alaska southeast to southern New Mexico; at 8,000-12,000 ft (2,438-3,658 m) in south; to sea level in north.
The bark is browsed by deer, elk, bighorn sheep, and moose; the leaves are eaten by grouse; and the seeds are consumed by songbirds and mammals.