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Paths

Cabin Path_watermarked

 

In the 38 years that we have lived here we have always burned wood to heat the house.  When we first bought the property I was a little concerned about how much wood I would use over the years and would our property eventually have a logging clear-cut look to it.  I soon came to realize that I didn’t need to worry about it – nature has it’s way to thin out the forest.  Every winter, wind storms bring down at least two trees and these are usually large enough to supply us with our year’s firewood.

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The good thing about windfalls is that they are usually deep in the forest and not dropping on the house.  Nothing like the sound of a large tree starting to fall when you are lying in bed at night and you don’t know which way it is going. For some reason 90% of our windstorms seem to be after dark.

The Maple_watermarked

The Hollow Maple Path — I always stick my camera up the hollow in hopes of capturing somebody living in it – nothing yet.

The bad news about windfalls deep in the forest is that I have to go get them.  In order to do so I have made paths throughout the forest leading to my firewood supply.  For 37 years I would cut up the tree and then take the wheelbarrow, collect the firewood and wheel it back to the woodshed for splitting.  These trails followed the path of least resistance, often wildlife trails that tended to meander through the trees.  After the wood was collected I fixed up the trail for walking and often linked up to others.

New Road 1_watermarked

A Tractor Trail

 

Last year I finally bought a small tractor to help save my back and provide some extra oomph when needed.  I chose a small tractor so I could still do my meandering paths with the least amount of disruption as possible.  It has worked well and the newer paths are still only about four feet wide. 

 

Arch_watermarked

 

We now have several looping trails and can usually spend a half hour or more walking the trails.  There is always lots to see and every day is a new experience for the senses.

 

Path to Maple Lodge_watermarked

 

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I cut this path through an old Douglas Fir windfall that looks to have been down for decades. The center of the tree is right at the very top of the cut which means the tree was twice as thick as it is now. The top half has rotted away. This tree would have been about 4 feet in diameter.

Path 2_watermarked

Forest Path_watermarked

Path 3_watermarked


9 comments

  1. My husband has mowed a network of trails through our fields, which we walk almost every day. The rest of the fields are growing up in wildflowers, native grasses, shrubs, and saplings. We see so much more wildlife now that there is more food and places to nest.

  2. Yes, that is a wonderful benefit of our paths. I’ve made my paths around some of the favourite haunts of various critters. The bears have one area, the elk another and the nesting ravens another. I can now approach these areas quietly and get some great photos opportunities.


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