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Snow Felling. How ALAP can you go? :D

Burnham

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I spent yesterday out with the district's snow ranger, felling some trees on the edges of a newly constructed X-C ski trail. This trail gets groomed with a snow cat, and a few places they left it too narrow for the machine to negotiate.

Snowshoe in about a mile with my 460 and the rest of the felling gear in my pack...plus food, water, extra clothing. Thank goodness for the young men "sherpas" we had along. They are both interns from Nicaragua and Haiti, respectively...working in 5 feet of snow was a new experience for them! :lol:
They got the dolmar and the shovels.

After the felling, we had to dig down to low cut the stumps so the machines wouldn't throw a track on them.
 

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squisher

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Heh you're supposed to dig it out before ya fall it:P . Five feet won't make much of a sawlog.:D


Nice even looking cuts as usual and before someone else says it heh that's a big step.:)
 

Burnham

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This one had to be placed with exacting accuracy, for there was little room in the stand to put it without risking a hang up. In the last shot you can see at the top of the frame the small notch in the crowns of the stand that I was shooting at. I'm happy to say it fell to the lay as I gunned it.

Notice how the tree ended up still sitting on top of the stump. It was restricted from forward movement by the stems in dense stand I felled it into. At first I thought that perhaps the stump shot I left had functioned, but I could see no evidence of impact against it, so I reckon the kick backwards was not that strong.
 

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Burnham

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You look suprised, lol.
Well, wouldn't you? After all, the damn tree fell down, just like that :lol: .

Heh you're supposed to dig it out before ya fall it:P . Five feet won't make much of a sawlog.:D
No sawlogs from this cutter :) .

Only a Canucklehead would choose to fall a tree standing down in that deep, slippery-sided hole :D.
 

squisher

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Ha my first winter in the bush in the inferior interior I shovelled for a faller, all winter long. The steeper the better when ya gotta shovel trees.
 

Reddog

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Burnham,

That is what the snow cat is for. Hauling your gear, digging out the snow with the front blade. And the cab is a nice coffee break hut.

:D :D

Great pics like always too.8)
 
C

Chisel Tooth

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Hey Burnham are those guys only like 4' tall or is it just the pic? Sweet job, so why did you have to hump it in and not have a cat take ya?
 
R

RIVERRAT

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You get paid to do some very cool stuff...envious, I am. Thanks for taking the time to get the pictures. :thumbup:
Doesn't he though. The kicker is, the O'l Fart "almost" seems to know what he's doing.

Burnham, in the 5th pic why did you come in that high on your back cut. I do the same at times. But wanted here your explanation.
 

Burnham

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Burnham,

That is what the snow cat is for. Hauling your gear, digging out the snow with the front blade. And the cab is a nice coffee break hut.

:D :D

Great pics like always too.8)
I don't have access to a snow cat, or I'd for damn sure have been using it. The grooming is done by a cooperative agreement with one of the downhill ski area operators...they have a long term permit for use of Forest Service land. Grooming a few of the nearby X-C trails is part of the permit, but not transporting FS employees on their appointed rounds. Unfortunately.

Hey Burnham are those guys only like 4' tall or is it just the pic? Sweet job, so why did you have to hump it in and not have a cat take ya?
The snow in the trail, where the guys were digging, has been compacted by the groomer, plus I didn't have them take it all the way down to dirt. We went down about 4 feet below the snow.

See my answer above re the snowcat...


Doesn't he though. The kicker is, the O'l Fart "almost" seems to know what he's doing.

Burnham, in the 5th pic why did you come in that high on your back cut. I do the same at times. But wanted here your explanation.
Same as always, bro. I'm a big believer in a good strong amount of stump shot encorporated into my felling cuts. Recall, I'm falling in a dense natural stand, driving the tree through a bunch of limbs and between tree trunks. The chances are pretty fair that the tree will want to come back over the stump at me if I screw up even a little bit and put it into another tree. Look at the second set of pics...that shows what my target window is like. Stump shot, people, stump shot.
 

Burnham

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NOW I find out :roll:...all these years I coulda had a lot easier time getting to some of that damn backwoods winter work...

:|:

<iframe width="560" height="315" src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/nTDNLUzjkpg" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
 

SouthSoundTree

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Nice, Burnham. Seems like a gear sled would be nice. Can haul the stove for a hot cuppa something, too.

I had to take down some snags for firewood at a cabin in the snow. Short approach, but snowshoes required to prevent postholing on the exit route. Interesting. I had it easy, just cut off a round periodically as the snow melted.

Shoveling out trees almost sounds made-up.
 

CurSedVoyce

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I saw some on a jeep once and I would love a set... Pricey as all get out though.. I would have to have more snow.. Sure would get you to those hard to get to trees though after a good storm. Place in Oakhurst up here sells them.
 

Burnham

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The LEO's on this NF have two sets for a pair of 800cc ATV's they acquired about three years ago. Cost was over 50% of the ATV's themselves, as I recall. They wanted them for access during the shoulder seasons when we don't always have contiguous snow coverage on the road system, as snowmobiles don't handle bare asphalt or aggregate well :|:.

After installing them the first winter, they were used just a couple of times. Since then, never. Long since removed and the wheels have stayed back on.

And I can tell you why from having ridden one then...the machine sits taller than it is wide by a fair margin with those tracks under it. Very unstable, even on flat surfaces...don't even think about trying a sidehill traverse.

Could work fine on a wider based type of machine, but not an ATV, imo.

They produced another strong negative...so much friction in the drives and surface contact that most of the available power goes to just making them turn. No juice on hills, and you can't carry enough fuel in the available tankage to drive out of sight.
 
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