Yenling, I'm very sure that no one would try to collect the ones your going to see as I'm pretty sure they are protected. In the white mountains resides Methuselah currently the oldest non-clonal living organism. This lofty status was bestowed when a graduate student cut down Prometheus at the time they oldest living thing at a estimated 5000 years old.....how would you like to be that guy with that hanging over your head. Both these are/were Bristlecones.
I have two and there fairly new two me as I have been under the impression that they don't do well out here in the east.....until I saw some mature well established ones in a landscape setting. I truly like the needles of this pine..very different and I can envision great possibilities. So being the adventurous I thought I'd give it a go...perhaps an ole dog an learn a new trick or two.