Sunday, December 10, 2006

Clearing after the Storms

Well today was one day that I will remember for some time to come. Tim, Rob, Dave and I headed to Snakes and Ladders in the dark at 6:30am. Given the recent snow storm and the windstorms, the trails at The Woodlot are in desperate need of repair from fallen trees.

The four of us climbed to the top of the trail by climbing over and under half a dozen fallen trees. This first photo shows what the top of the trail looked like when we arrived.

Fallen trees everywhere.

Once we stashed our bikes we hiked down the trail get the chainsaw and axes and to survey the trail to get a good idea about the state of the trail. On the hike down there were a lot of HOLY CRAPS and WTF!?! being said.

A group of fallen trees.

In several places the trees fell in groups, so rather than just one tree there were 5 or 6 trees fallen in a group or clusters. Once we were at the tool stash Tim went to work getting the saw running and I went down to the bottom of the trail to see how many more trees were going to be needed to be cleared. Once the saw was running it was a quick jaunt down the trail to cut out the 6 trees that had fallen then it was up the trail to cut out all the trees that fell during the bad weather we have had.

Nobody actually kept a count of the number of trees that we cut out but I would guess that there were at least 30 and likely 40 trees that we cut out in total. We made surprisingly good time cutting out the trees with Tim manning the saw and Dave, Rob and I moving the cut pieces out of the way. Dave and Rob ended up doing a fair amount of removal with the axes while Tim worked on the saw and I kept him company or removing dead-fall by hand. By 10:00am we were at the top of the trail and that was with a lot of hiking around and the 'issue' we had with the saw.

Tim doing some hedge trimming.

When we were all at the top of the trail Cory came walking by with his bow saw and a not so happy look on his face as he was just surveying all the fallen trees on the trails. To sum it up, there is a lot of work that needs to be done to get the trails back into their former state. Rob needed to take off a little earlier than the rest of us so he was the first to jet at 10:30 then Tim left at 11:00am with the saw on his back ready for a tune-up. Dave and I stayed back for a little while longer to clear some fallen trees with the axes on the skidder road up.

By the time all four of us had left, the skidder road up to Snakes and Ladders and the whole trail itself was clear. There were other people working their butts off on the hill clearing trees and doing work to get the trails back into good running order. A big shout out to Dieter, Dan, Cory, Ewan and anyone else that has been busting their butt to fix the trails after the recent storms.

After Dave and I finished working we hiked back to our bikes and rode Snakes and Ladders free and clear without the worry of running into any fallen trees. At the bottom of Snakes and Ladders there were still a few trees on the road out but they can be taken care of on a later date. On the road below Quick Hit Dave and I ran into Dieter and Dan who were kind enough to bring a nice saw and offered their help in clearing Krazy Karpenter, Giant Killer and Hoots.

Both Dave and I then rode Shotgun out to the parking area where there were about a dozen or so people mulling around wondering what trails were open/cleared and what was closed. All I was able to say at the time was Snakes and Ladders and Shotgun were both clear and ready to rip.

The four of us had a good time building together and from what I understand, there is suppose to be another big wind storm blowing through in the next few days, so we may be repeating this exercise sooner than we think.

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