Thursday, 5 February 2009

January 2009. Dam it!

A couple of visits this month and we’ve almost finished coppicing this season’s area. But apart from taking off some of the smaller branches the felled trees haven’t been processed yet, so even when we finished felling there’ll be quite a lot of work left to do logging up and stacking. This time last year it was frustrating the number of trees I was getting hung up, but this winter there has only been one that needed winching out. There were others hung up but they were small enough to drag by hand. In fact that was partly by plan; when trees were most likely to get hung up then I have been taking out all the smaller ones 1st to create more space and reduce the risk of hanging up a larger one (yep, bloody obvious when you think about it).

As well as the coppicing jobs, there has been activity down in the gill with Tom and Sam (and me too) building a small dam below what will be the new tree camp. The 1st session was just roughly putting a couple of logs across and rocks beneath, but when we visited a couple of weeks later the river had helped by filling in the gaps with twigs, leaves and silt. The stream is flowing well and as full as we’ve ever seen it. The only downer this month was our 1st unwelcome visitor activity, as the spade we had been using by the dam ‘disappeared’. We thought it would be safe as it was away from the path but we were wrong, this now raises concern about how trusting we can be with other things we leave in the wood.