Wednesday, January 04, 2006

cedar devastation at roaring river

ben got a government contract to cut down all the cedar (non-native) trees on 15 acres of roaring river state park. they plan to burn them in place in june. we fell the trees cut them into manageable chunks and leave them. i cut hundreds and hundreds of trees yesterday. there are thousands of dollars worth of trees that cannot be taken out for cedar closets. the hike is too far, no vehicles allowed, they are trying to take the area back to original pre-settlement status. the fragile native tree species cannot compete with the cedar. it still kinda makes me sick because i feel like a clear cutter. the place looks like a tornado hit.

needless to say cutting dense cedar forest on steep rocky terrain is hard work. i am sore this morning and i'll be back at it today. on a positive note i can judge, wedge and fell trees very reliably. before yesterday the art of falling trees seemed more like guess work--especially on big trees it can be really scary. i fell some huge cedars yesterday. i couldn't reach around the trunk at chest height (that is huge for cedar). not to jinx myself but i'm getting pretty good at it.

oh the beautiful wood that is just sitting there ready to be burned. transport heliocopter anyone?


Phoebe Gleeson said...

How frustrating, all that wood just sitting there! Cedars are a huge problem in OK as well, of course... I saw a segment on a local show about a guy who clears them for a fee then makes things from the wood. I think he's got a good thing going.

Now, go sing the Monty Python Lumberjack Song.

pablo said...

I never realized there were parts of Missouri that were NOT native for cedars. (There's even a Cedar County in Missouri!) I think once the native forest gets re-established it will be able to keep out the cedars.

karl said...

phoebe, the hike back in to where we are cutting is too far to bring any quantity of wood out. the real beauty of this wood is it's sheer size. yesterday i cut trees that were so tall and straight that it made me ill to think of the waste.

pablo, allegedly this area only sustained the junifer (not juniper) evergreen. it kinda looks like a twisted battered version of a cedar without the red center wood.

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