One of the deals at our main hunting ground is you need to pitch in to cut winter firewood. It is desperately needed to heat 3 buildings during the cold winter — Note: It’s a boiler system. Typically what we do is dead or dying trees are targeted during the year. A team with chainsaws drops the trees throughout the property. And over the next 2 days, more teams come in cut, stack, carry and haul all of the wood next to a boiler system.
This year, one particular set of woods was hit very hard by the Emerald Ash Bore. Huge ash trees are being killed off in waves back there. Not only is it a blight, it’s downright dangerous. We are talking some trees the better part of 100 feet tall. If even a large limb were to drop, not only would it be fatal to a human; they would probably destroy trucks and Kubotas. Meaning no safe place to hide. With hunters and family roaming these woods, it’s not something that can be ignored.
With the Ash Bore problem, we focused almost exclusively on the section of the property known as the “Oak Woods” since it contains many dead or diseased trees. All the dead ash trees were dropped. Any ash tree showing even the slightest signs of infestation, regardless of life, was also dropped. The hope is to create “fire-break” and contain the disease to this one area of the farm. If not, we’re in real danger of losing every ash tree over the next few years.
So with 10 hunting buddies, 1 bobcat, 1 bulldozer, 1 tractor, 2 pickup trucks and supervisor, “Cedar Jim”, 2800 cubic feet of firewood was harvested and cut. For you domestic fireplace guys, that’s 21 cords of quality wood.
Conclusion, if you are an aspiring hunter who is looking for property access, think about making yourself useful. Sure there are hunting leases and that is a viable option for some. But you will never be as tight with the landowner as someone who is willing to put in sweat equity to manage the property. Leases are distant, business arraignments. Hunting buddies are friends the landowner can count on.
“Shooting Guns & Having Fun”