Trees to 50 m; trunk to 3 m diam. Bark reddish brown, l0--20(--25) cm thick, divided into broad, rounded ridges. Branchlet sprays predominantly pinnate. Leaves of branchlets mostly 2--3 mm, apex acute to acuminate, facial leaves frequently separated by paired bases of lateral leaves; glands usually present, linear. Pollen cones 2--4 mm, dark brown; pollen sacs red. Seed cones maturing and opening first year, 8--12 mm broad, glaucous, purplish to reddish brown, not notably resinous; scales 5--9. Seeds 2--4 per scale, 2--5 mm, wing equal to or broader than body. 2n = 22.
Forests of the Coast Ranges with isolated inland populations at higher elevations in the Siskiyou Mountains and on Mt. Shasta; 0--1500 m; Calif., Oreg.
A. J. Rehder (1949) listed, with bibliographic citations, 66 published varieties and forms best considered as cultivars.