Complicated terrain is a signature component of logging in the #appalachian mountains. Everything is steep or angled oddly. Down trees are dragged back to the landing zone with the @caterpillar_empire #dm5 using chains on a cable and a winch. The amount of force it takes to drag a tree up a hill (and then back down the other side) is hard to imagine. Harder still is keeping the cable spooling straight as you wind it in under tens of thousands of pounds of tension! #@lumixusa #gh5 #lumixlounge  I wanted to see what logging looks like to small trees and new growth: opportunity. A chance to get rain, sun and nutrients that otherwise would go to older growth almost exclusively as the sky breaks through the canopy. The harvest of mature timber is the beginning of a new cycle of eager growth. @lumixusa @stihlusa #gh5 #lumixlounge  The landing is where the felled logs are limbed and cut, then piled with a huge claw machine called a timberjack--and ultimately loaded into flatbed trailers for their trip to the lumber mill. Logging in the #appalachian mountains is always a bit of a junk show because the terrain is often steep. In this shot my brother David is explaining about the best way to approach the next "drag" of timber with the bulldozer. Hitting a stump the wrong way, going up or down a hollow in the wrong way can mean a costly repair which literally halts work for days--and will take weeks of work to recover financially. Work quickly but with utmost caution. I had never thought of timber harvesting as being so delicate. During my time working on this project I was mostly dragging timber with the dozer and limbing it at the landing. Felling and stacking are a bit less "beginner friendly" so my involvement there was mostly to ask questions and document answers. @lumixusa #gh5
 Stumps are everywhere! Most of them are much easier left alone and simply cut low enough that they won't interfere with tracked equipment but on occasion, they must be removed. It's an arduous process and creates bulky waste wood but it's worth it to make certain that the bulldozer doesn't get damaged. Preventative clearing can help avoid tens of thousands of dollars of equipment repair which is usually the Achilles heel of small scale timber harvesters; used equipment is all that is affordable but it also requires gentler treatment and repairs can slow work to a halt while costing a huge a mount of money. @lumixusa #gh5 #lumixlounge @stihlusa #logging #tree  #tbt Thunderstorm chasing in #zion with @stefsurreal @rob3sixt and @laudahl in 2012 good memories from the good days in the canyon. Nearly died waiting to get this shot as the #lightning drew close. Coincidentally this took place on my 29th birthday. I have no regrets about the risks; I will cherish this photograph and everything it represents for the rest of my life.  There are more than a couple ways to approach logging with a small crew of 2-3 people. Each set of tools carries with it different pros and cons. Ultimately relative cost dictates a lot of the protocol when it's a skeleton crew. We used a @caterpillar_empire #d5 with a winch and chains to retrieve felled trees and drag them to the landing where they'd be limbed and cut into logs and piled. The bulldozer is slower and less agile than a skidder but capable of performing multiple functions necessary when harvesting a tract of timber. The tools dictate the speed and efficiency of the work, the cost and the amount of physical effort required to bring timber to market. @lumixusa #gh5 #lumixlounge #appalachian #logging
 After felling the standing timber, the brush is burned off to facilitate the new growth which eagerly pushes through the charred waste. Storm clouds in the distance roll in promising abundant moisture. The tiny seedling in yesterday's photo is visible in the foreground, ready to take a drink and get busy with growing! @lumixusa #gh5 #lumixlounge #appalachian #logging  One of the charms of small scale logging in #appalachia is the amount of effort that is necessary just to access the timber. Logging equipment needs to get in as well as flatbed trailers which are not particularly nimble. This would be difficult enough without the need to protect the home and living space of the landowner--but throw in the total lack of any flat ground and you've got work to do prior to the work you've got to do! I personally enjoyed documenting my brother taking down this much larger tree during most of a workday, but it was filled with ants and rot making it worthless from a timber sale standpoint. Each tree is a bit of a gamble. You risk time, effort and safety and hope to find few enough flaws in the wood to make a little money back. It's often difficult to guess what the value will be until the tree is down and it's too late to go back. @lumixusa #gh5 @stihlusa
 What's cut down, regrows-if it's managed properly. I was amazed at how rapidly the new growth emerged despite the bleak and seemingly decimated landscape. As my brother has always said, "the #appalachian mountains just want to be a forest".  The landing zone is where the trees are dragged, limbed, cut and stacked. The parameters of the LZ are determined by the reach of this machine; the Timberjack. It's a giant claw machine mounted on a trailer used to grab logs and lift and spin them. It's incredible how delicately it can operate. It's also incredible how difficult it is to achieve this type of precision. The wood piled in the foreground of this image is pulp wood-not thick or true (straight) enough to sell for board lumber. It's less valuable but it gets taken to the mill and turned into pulp for paper and particle board. There is a whole science to the paper market; pulp wood often accumulates when the mills have too much, flooded with supply from large commercial logging operations. Often times mills won't even take pulp wood except for specific intervals when they need it. Meanwhile, as you harvest the board lumber that is always in demand, the scrap, pulp wood builds up. @lumixusa #gh5 #appalachian #logging