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Standing dead trees on my property

Post in 'The Wood Shed' started by area_man, Mar 8, 2013.

  1. area_man

    area_man Member

    Joined:
    Feb 12, 2013
    Messages:
    104
    Loc:
    Oregon City, OR
    There are at least seven dead trees on my property that can be harvested for firewood. The problem is that I can't get a truck to them due to landscaping issues, and the property has a HARD slope down to a small creek. There's no way to get a wheelbarrow to the trees, it would definitely be hand-carried or I would have to use a winch to drag it up the steep and muddy incline. It's steeper than stairs in most places and I can't even walk the property without losing my footing and ending up on my butt at least once or twice.

    There are also some monster trees that fell some time in the past across the creek that could possibly be used for firewood, but they're about 36" diameter and over 16 feet long.

    Any ideas how I can go about clearing the dead wood?

    I don't have a chainsaw, but I think it's in the budget if I can get the wood up the slope and stack it to dry. I have never cut down a tree.

    The guy that cleaned my chimney quoted me $400 to fell a large oak and leave it as-is where it lies. It's about 46" at the base, and about 36" 8' up. He tells me he sees four cords in that tree.

    Thank you!

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  2. Wilhelm911

    Wilhelm911 Member

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    Sounds to me like you have enough wood to justify building a set of stairs up the hard bank. Or make some kind of pulley/winch system. I would only do something like this if there was a few cord of wood to be had. Otherwise it's not worth it, to me.

    If you do buy a saw, please wear the PPE, and learn how to operate it properly. Start off with smaller trees and once you feel comfortable, then you can take that big oak.
    Shane N and Beer Belly like this.
  3. bigbarf48

    bigbarf48 Minister of Fire

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    Stone Mountain GA
    I would think that winching it out would be easiest if you have all that type equipment
    PA Fire Bug likes this.
  4. swagler85

    swagler85 Minister of Fire

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    Welcome! I've carried wood up a steep slope and its not fun. This was only a 15' bank but steep. That will wear you out fast, a winch would be nice but don't overload it.
  5. Jon1270

    Jon1270 Minister of Fire

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  6. Ralphie Boy

    Ralphie Boy Minister of Fire

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    Welcome to the nut farm() If you get a saw !!! BE CAREFUL! GET SOME GOOD TRAINING FROM A PRO BEFORE FELLING! CUTTING A STANDING DEAD TREE IS A MUCH DIFFERENT TASK THAN CUTTING A LIVE STANDING TREE AND BRINGS WITH IT MANY DIFFERENT DANGERS WHEN FELLING.!!!
    ScotO and BobUrban like this.
  7. billb3

    billb3 Minister of Fire

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    SE Mass
    Float them down the creek ?

    36"DBH oak is gonna be H E A V Y.

    I have a steep slope and had to build a narrow road across the face to get down to the lower level



    winch /pulleys with a log arch maybe ?
    ScotO likes this.
  8. Lumber-Jack

    Lumber-Jack Minister of Fire

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    As a rule, wood that is that far out of reach just isn't worth it. Also, I don't know about your environmental laws there but here in Canada you are not allowed cut anything with 50 meters of any streams or lakes.

    I use to work in the BC coast cutting cedar blocks from dead and fallen cedar trees, sometimes the trees and logs we were cutting were a 20 minute walk away into the bush with all our gear, the most economical way to retrieve the wood in that mountainous terrain was by helicopter, but ONLY if the wood was UP the hill from the nearest road. If the wood was up the hill the helicopter could lift the bundles of shake blocks slightly into the air and GLIDE them down over the road and drop them in a pile. If there was wood located down the hill from the road we wouldn't even bother with it, it was just too expensive for the helicopter to retrieve because it would take too much time and fuel for the helicopter to power lift that wood up any amount of elevation.
    So, the moral of the story is it just takes a whole heck of a lot more time and energy to move wood uphill than downhill.
  9. Paulywalnut

    Paulywalnut Minister of Fire

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    Fell the tree. c/s/s it right there. it still has to season a year or two.
    After it is seasoned take loads up when needed. I don't know,
    just a thought. Local wrestling team might want to make a few
    bucks running big oak rounds up the hill.:)
    ScotO and Shane N like this.
  10. swagler85

    swagler85 Minister of Fire

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    are the monsters also down the slope?
  11. osagebow

    osagebow Minister of Fire

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    hahaha....that's where I got married!
    Good luck, and wear your PPE area man - For chainsawing AND marriage.
    Also, get a reliable unit for BOTH tasks. If you get either one off craigslist,have the guys here check it out for you first.;)
    ScotO likes this.
  12. ScotO

    ScotO Guest

    Maybe you could set up a double snatch block and some rope, and pull the rounds up the hill with your truck or something. Sounds like an easier method would be to send someone downstream at an access point, cut down and buck the trees, roll them DOWN the hill and buck them up, split them and pitch the splits into the creek, sending them downstream to the 'catcher'.....he can load them into the truck for ya.

    yes, sounds complicated.......maybe the easiest method would be to just forget about the whole job?;)
  13. area_man

    area_man Member

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    Loc:
    Oregon City, OR
    It's going to be a pain no matter what. EVERYTHING is down the slope. My house sits on the one level patch in the acre, everything else is on a 70' drop to the creek, then up another 70' to the other side. It's going to be a slog.

    However.

    I decided to get into burning wood to heat the house because I'll heat it essentially for free and I won't have to go to the gym anymore. The woods is my gym.

    Maybe I could use the wood to build a chuck dam set of stairs in switchbacks down the slope first, and cut wood for heat after that.
  14. Woody Stover

    Woody Stover Minister of Fire

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    Joy to Catalina, in an episode of 'My Name is Earl.' "Do these look saggy to you? I could float half your village across the Mighty River with these puppies!" ;lol
  15. area_man

    area_man Member

    Joined:
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    Loc:
    Oregon City, OR
    There are a couple of downed logs on the upslope I'm going to attack first. My best move might be to build some check dam stairs out of that wood first, and then go on to c/s/s what's available before I start cutting down the standing wood. I have a few pics to post tomorrow, and I'll take some more as I go.

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