When we walk through our bush in the morning, we always keep an eye out for potential fuel for the wood stove. The easiest of course is a large branch that has broken off, or a tree that has lost it's head in a strong wind, or even better, a tree that has fallen over.
A lot of years ago a maple tree fell over, but the roots were still in the ground, so it continued to grow. It didn't really destroy one of our cross-fences, but sort of bent the wire down a bit, and then became a convenient way for the coyotes to cross over the fence. They just jumped up onto the log, walked out along it a ways, and jumped off on the other side of the fence. Just recently, Luna had started doing the same thing, and it was getting annoying. So I mentioned again that it sure would be nice to get the log sawn up to get rid of the bridge. There was a couple of problems though. Two branches on that log had got pretty thick and grown up like trees. One of them was leaning into another bunch of trees, and the other one was leaning towards the neighbours and wanting to fall on the property line fence.
It's the tree in the middle of the picture, already cut off and some of it split.
Necessity is the mother of invention, so the truck got called into service, since the tractor didn't want to start. Have I mentioned before that Larry is not mechanical? (Thank goodness our son is....He got the tractor started on Saturday) A cable was fastened up the vertical branch/tree as far as could be reached, and then a few chains were fastened to that, and then to the truck. After a few attempts of cutting partway through and putting tension on the cable with the truck, it all came together and the first branch came down, sort of. We did get it down and in a position to cut up eventually, and then we did the second one and got it to fall the opposite way to how it was leaning. We managed to NOT get the truck stuck, NOT crush the property line fence and nothing went drastically wrong. It's always a little nerve wracking though. There's the potential for a lot of things to do wrong, badly wrong, and it's always a relief when it's all done. Larry is the logger, I'm the truck or tractor driver, the worrier and the 'TIMBER!' yeller. I stand there and visualize every possible scenario of how things can go wrong.
Jake gives you some idea of the size of the log. There are still more rounds to be cut off behind him. You can see the bent down cross-fence in front of him.
We got the logs down on Friday. Monday when we went for our walk in the morning, we carried the splitting maul out with us. I think it's because of something in Luna's former life, but she was not happy about me carrying that maul. She didn't want to come with us, was all wimpy and wiggly and we had to coax her most of the way. Once I left the maul at the pile though she was fine, and ran off ahead.
On the way back, we let the dogs through the gate near the end of the bush field, because Luna also doesn't like any pounding, like the pounding noise from the maul hitting the logs. We were hoping that Calli would meander her way back towards the house. Larry positioned the log rounds, and I started splitting. It split relatively easily, but even though my shoulders can handle the splitting motion better than Larry's, I can only do so much. The rest was left for another day or three.
Thank goodness that I looked back to my left as we went through the gate ourselves. Instead of heading towards the house, Calli had decided to do some exploring and figured that she had got herself stuck.
Larry went down to help her, he said she didn't seem to be stuck, but I guess in her mind she was.
We'll just keep picking away at the wood, until it's all cut and split, and then take the tractor and trailer down the trail as close to the pile as we can. It will be loaded up and brought back to be added to the wood pile, and will be burned next winter at the earliest, and maybe the winter after that.
Oh yeah, add some repair to the cross-fence to that project as well.