Dr Kurt Kipfmueller

Photo of Dr Kurt Kipfmueller

Contact Me


Room 568 Soc Sci

267 19th Ave S

Educational Background & Specialties

Educational Background

  • B.S.: Geography and Earth Science, Central Michigan University, Mt. Pleasant, MI, 1993.
  • M.A.: Geography, University of Wyoming, Laramie, WY, 1997.
  • Ph.D.: Geography, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, 2003.


  • Biogeography
  • Climatology
  • Paleo-environments
  • Landscape ecology and natural disturbances
  • Dendrochronology
  • Climate Change
  • global change
  • forest dynamics
  • whitebark pine ecology
  • forest ecology
  • mountain pine beetles
  • physical geography
Courses Taught
  • GEOG 5426 - Climatic Variations
  • GEOG 3431/5431 - Plant and Animal Geography
  • GEOG 1403 - Biogeography of the Global Garden
  • GEOG 1901 - Is Climate Really Changing? (Freshmen Seminar)
  • GEOG 1901- Freshmen Seminar: The Geography of Environmental Hazards
Research & Professional Activities


  • Collaborative Research: Assessing the Use of Paleorecords to Understand Beetle Outbreaks in Subalpine Forests.: 2007 - 2011
  • Demography and Disturbance History across the Ponderosa Pine-Lodgepole Pine Ecotone in the Southern Cascade Range.: 2008 - 2011
  • Reconstructing climate from tree-rings in northern Minnesota: I am collecting tree ring samples from several conifer species found in the northern portions of Minnesota including the Boundary Waters., Summer 2005 - Summer 2007
  • Fire history and age structure analysis in the Sherburne National Wildlife Refuge: This work is examining the fire history and forest compositional patterns in a small remnant oak savanna. The work is supported by the USFWS., Summer 2006 - Summer 2007
  • Larson, E.R. and K.F. Kipfmueller. 2012. Ecological disaster or the limits of observation? Reconciling modern declines with the long-term dynamics of whitebark pine communities. Geography Compass, 6/4: 189-214.
  • Kipfmueller, K.F., Larson, E.R., and St. George, S. 2012. Does proxy uncertainty affect the relations inferred between the Pacific Decadal Oscillation and wildfire activity in the western United States? Geophysical Research Letters, Vol. 39, L4703, doi: 10.1029/2011GL050645
  • Elliott, G.P. & Kipfmueller, K.F. 2011. Multi-Scale Influences of Climate on Upper Treeline Dynamics in the Southern Rocky Mountains, USA: Evidence of Intra-Regional Variability and Bioclimatic Thresholds in Response to 20th Century Climate. The Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 101(6): 1181–1203.
  • Elliott, G.P., and Kipfmueller, K.F. 2010. The multi-scale influences of topography and spatial pattern on ecotonal dynamics at upper treeline in the Southern Rocky Mountains, USA. Arctic, Antarctic, and Alpine Research, 42(1): 45–56.
  • Kipfmueller, K.F., G.P. Elliott, E.R. Larson, & M.W. Salzer. 2010. An assessment of the dendroclimatic characteristics of three conifer species in northern Minnesota. Tree-Ring Research, 66(2):113-126.
  • Kipfmueller, K.F., and Salzer, M.W. 2010. Linear trend and climate response of five-needle pines in the western United States related to treeline proximity. Canadian Journal of Forest Research, 40(1): 131–142.
  • Larson, E.R., Kipfmueller, K.F., Hale, C.M., Frelich, L.E., & Reich, P.B. 2010. Tree Rings Detect Earthworm Invasions and their Effects in Northern Hardwood Forests. Biological Invasion, 12(5):1053–1056.
  • Salzer, M.W., Hughes, M.K., Bunn, A.G., and Kipfmueller, K.F. 2009. Recent unprecedented tree-ring growth in bristlecone pine at the highest elevations and possible causes. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, 106:20348-20353.
  • Kipfmueller, K.F. 2008. Reconstructed temperature in a northern Rocky Mountains Wilderness. Quaternary Research, 70: 173–187.
  • Brunelle, A., C. Whitlock, P. Bartlein, & K.F. Kipfmueller. 2005. Holocene fire and vegetation along environmental gradients in the Northern Rocky Mountains. Quaternary Science Reviews, 24: 2281–2300.
  • Kipfmueller, K.F. & J.A. Kupfer. 2005. Complexity of successional pathways in subalpine forests of the Selway-Bitterroot Wilderness Area, USA. Annals of the Association of American Geographers, 95(3): 495–510.
  • Salzer, M.W., & K.F. Kipfmueller. 2005. Reconstructed temperature and precipitation on a millennial timescale from tree-rings in the Southern Colorado Plateau, USA. Climatic Change, 70: 465–487.
  • "Using Dendrochronology to Reconstruct the History of Ecosystems" in The Historical Ecology Handbook, ed. D. Egan and E. Howell: Kipfmueller, Kurt, T.W. Swetnam, Washington, DC: Island Press, The Historical Ecology Handbook, 199-228, 2001.
  • "Spatial Ecology of Pre-EuroAmerican Fires in a Southern Rocky Mountain Subalpine Forest Landscape.": Kipfmueller, Kurt, W. L. Baker, The Professional Geographer, 53 248-262, 2001.
  • Kipfmueller, K.F. & W.L. Baker. 2000. A fire history of a subalpine forest in southeastern Wyoming. Journal of Biogeography, 27 (1): 71–85.
  • Kipfmueller, K.F. & W.L. Baker. 1998. A comparison of three techniques to date stand-replacing fires in lodgepole pine forests. Forest Ecology and Management, 104: 171–177.
  • Arthur "Red" Motley Exemplary Teaching Award, College of Liberal Arts, University of Minnesota, 2010
  • Outstanding Graduate Student Mentor, Supporting Women in Geography, 2008