Early morning breakfast on Wednesday and time to load up the vans for the drive to the mill town of Gilchrist. After picking up Fitz in Bend we continue on to a mature pine stand being managed and thinned for future old growth structure. As you can see from the picture below, it’s just an awful day to be out in the woods like this, but someone has to do it!
Once on site, the students know the drill. Out of the van and 20 to 30 minutes for walking observations and then a meet back at the van for discussions. Students have now come a long way and observations are detailed on crown structure, stems per acre, disease noted, soil types, and lots of other details. We laugh now about the early discussions from week one where we got them to say they saw trees!
Time for a field tutorial where I walked them through the process a cruiser would take to size up the stand. Lunch time and then it’s time to cruise.
“Diameter estimation, critical limiting distances, VBAR/Tarif, man there’s just a lot to do here, and we gotta do crown class and down wood and all that stuff too?” – Colin
“And you’ll do just fine Colin” – me
Jake rockin’ the “I’m a cruiser and that’s a damn fine pine” look
Future “to be big one day” trees
Truly, a forester’s Filed of Dreams.
Yeah, we really do get paid to do this!