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treeswarper
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PostFri May 22, 2020 9:33 pm 
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Ski wrote:
es, you can get a hell of a lot of wood cut in a day with a good saw and a sharp chain, but long after the sun goes down your arms will still be vibrating and you'll be mostly deaf.

That's your experience.  It all depends how much you've been running a saw and the saw.  I've never had "vibrating arms."  I have had a hand go numb and back in da bad old days would wake up with a hand in a claw shape--that was running a mac all day for  a couple of months.

There are sekrits to running a saw so not as much hurts.  Right now, I wouldn't even think about working all day cuz I am not in the right condition.  I cut down a cherry tree last year and that's the last time I ran the Barbie saw.

And, the first time I worked on a thinning crew, running saw, I hurt for the first week, then was able to relax more while working and not fearing the saw so much that I was holding it out away from me, which is hard on the body.

You might try wearing ear plugs.  They work.

I just seem to be production oriented and my problem is that the few times I volunteered, I hated having to start working so late in the morning, when it was starting to get hot and that goes for whatever type of saw being used.

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What's especially fun about sock puppets is that you can make each one unique and individual, so that they each have special characters. And they don't have to be human––animals and aliens are great possibilities
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Marc-Aurèle Fortin
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PostFri May 22, 2020 9:34 pm 
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Ski wrote:
Take comfort in knowing that it's not exclusive to the USFS.

I'm not surprised at all.

People both inside and outside of the government forget that the Wilderness Act is a piece of land management legislation. It is not scripture. It does not provide moral guidance on how to visit Wilderness with the right attitude. Government agencies have no business doing that either.
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RodF
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PostSat May 23, 2020 5:45 am 
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FiresideChats wrote:
Does anyone have an efficiency comparison between xcut and chainsaws?

Olympic NP ran a comparison several years ago, while clearing the Duckabush Trail, which hadn't been cleared for 3 years or so.  It has trail crew who are expert, certified crosscut and chainsaw sawyers.  They logged the number and size of logs bucked by each crew during two 10-day work parties.  (They work 2-week shifts, with 10 days on and 4 days off.)  Crosscut crews required 3 times the number of manhours to remove the same number and size of windfall logs as did the chainsaw crew. 

This 3:1 ratio will vary, depending on the size and number of windfall.  The Duckabush is fairly representative of Olympic overall, with windfall averaging about 2 feet in diameter.  On subalpine or east-side trails having fewer and smaller windfall, the ratio will be lower than 3:1, so crosscut saws are less impractical.  In old-growth west-side valleys, the ratio will be greater than 3:1.

Marc-Aurèle Fortin wrote:
...there's a laborious procedure under which some high-ranking Forest Service official can authorize chainsaw use. I understand it's quite a hassle, though.

Nationally, only USFS Regional Foresters can sign a categorical exclusion decision memo finding chainsaw the minimum necessary tool for a specific situation within wilderness.  In Region 6 (OR-WA), the regional forester has delegated this authority to Forest Supervisors.   In situations where crosscut use is unsafe, it seems to be easier for them to approve the use of dynamite than the use of a chainsaw.   dizzy.gif  But that does get the job done.

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"of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt" - John Muir
"the wild is not the opposite of cultivated.  It is the opposite of the captivated” - Vandana Shiva
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mb
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PostSat May 23, 2020 9:17 pm 
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Does the FS have any rule or even suggestion promoting efficiency?
Obviously not always the right answer--volunteers give a lot even though they are terribly inefficient. Some aesthetically pleasing things are inefficient. But perhaps some balance exists?


Anyway this thread also reminds me of three land management interactions this year.

* Public meeting about a project. Statement from a presenter which was basically "we have heard much public comment on this aspect of the project and have decided to do what we wanted to do in the first place anyway".
* From a land management staffer, basically "we can't allow this activity because the legislation says so". The cited legislation is one paragraph long and neither says nor hints at anything about this activity.
* From someone who works on legislation affecting a land manager, basically "we passed legislation to enable and encourage them to do a certain thing. They continue to not do it and it's frustrating."


Back on the topic of this thread: one of the three items above directly relates to 'adopt a trail'.
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FiresideChats
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PostSat May 23, 2020 9:49 pm 
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RodF wrote:
Crosscut crews required 3 times the number of manhours to remove the same number and size of windfall logs as did the chainsaw crew. 

That's actually less of a difference than I expected. A substantial difference, but offset as per the  note, that more volunteers will turn up for xcut than than the chain. I would suspect more than 3x as many in fact.

RodF wrote:
This 3:1 ratio will vary, depending on the size and number of windfall.  The Duckabush is fairly representative of Olympic overall, with windfall averaging about 2 feet in diameter.  On subalpine or east-side trails having fewer and smaller windfall, the ratio will be lower than 3:1, so crosscut saws are less impractical.  In old-growth west-side valleys, the ratio will be greater than 3:1.

That makes a lot of sense.
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Marc-Aurèle Fortin
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PostSun May 24, 2020 10:09 am 
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A most interesting and informative thread. Thanks, everyone.
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RodF
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PostSun May 24, 2020 5:39 pm 
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National Forest System Trails Stewardship Act of 2016 notes that “The lack of maintenance on National Forest System trails threatens access to public lands, and may cause increased environmental damage, threaten public safety, and increase future maintenance costs.”  and sets goals:
“(1) augment and support the capabilities of Federal employees to carry out or contribute to trail maintenance;
(2) provide meaningful opportunities for volunteers and partners to carry out trail maintenance in each region of the Forest Service;
(3) address the barriers to increased volunteerism and partnerships in trail maintenance identified by volunteers, partners, and others;
(4) prioritize increased volunteerism and partnerships in trail maintenance in those regions with the most severe trail maintenance needs, and where trail maintenance backlogs are jeopardizing access to National Forest lands; and
(5) aim to increase trail maintenance by volunteers and partners by 100 percent by the date that is 5 years after the date of the enactment of this Act.”

The Forest Service’s “National Strategy for a Sustainable Trail System” sets “Trails are an agency priority”.  It identifies “agency processes and culture” as one area which requires action to “remove barriers”  by adopting “improved and innovative approaches”.  Its goal is to “maximize opportunities for effective partnering and trail stewardship” to maintain a diverse, sustainable, well-maintained trail system.

mb wrote:
* From someone who works on legislation affecting a land manager, basically "we passed legislation to enable and encourage them to do a certain thing. They continue to not do it and it's frustrating."

Back on the topic of this thread: one of the three items above directly relates to 'adopt a trail'.

Well, they issued a report and put up a splashy web page...

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"of all the paths you take in life, make sure a few of them are dirt" - John Muir
"the wild is not the opposite of cultivated.  It is the opposite of the captivated” - Vandana Shiva
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treeswarper
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PostSun May 24, 2020 7:37 pm 
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FiresideChats wrote:
That's actually less of a difference than I expected. A substantial difference, but offset as per the  note, that more volunteers will turn up for xcut than than the chain. I would suspect more than 3x as many in fact.

I'm not too sure about that.  The training classes that I've been to for chainsaw were filled up as were the crosscut classes.  What happens is that there is more work planned in the wilderness, and that rules out chainsaws.  That's what I see when I look at the projects.  Also, the WTA does not or did not allow volunteers to run chainsaws.   The PCTA does. 

The certification bit may be harder for chainsaws?  I am not sure how hard it is to get the A level because I went right to the B level.

An anecdote:  I know of a very good professional timber faller who wanted to volunteer to fall hazard trees, along the school bus route.  He was told he could not because he had to be certified and that was done for the year. 

I went out one day where he was working and he yelled at me to tell him how to fall a tree because I was certified and he was not.  I told him I'd have to lie down on the ground and look at the tree because I was merely certified to buck trees up.  We laughed at the absurdity of his situation.  But rules is rules.  He is one who likes to ride his dirt bikes on the trails and takes a saw along in early spring to cut trails out.

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FiresideChats
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PostSun May 24, 2020 8:51 pm 
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treeswarper wrote:
Also, the WTA does not or did not allow volunteers to run chainsaws. 

treeswarper wrote:
He was told he could not because he had to be certified and that was done for the year. 

To me, this is a direct consequence of the over-litigious society in which we live as well as the increasing bureaucratic norms that everybody of all political stripes knocks, but seems powerless to stop.
treeswarper wrote:
He is one who likes to ride his dirt bikes on the trails and takes a saw along in early spring to cut trails out.

I appreciate the efforts of these folks as well as all other volunteers. I'm my mind there are three main mentalities for trail work: dirt bike and chainsaws folks, yuppies and suburban/rural nature lovers that plan to volunteer on a long saw crew (my team), and the leather and stirrups of the backcountry horsepackers.
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ranger rock
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PostMon May 25, 2020 2:28 pm 
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There is an overgrown section of the dry creek trail that was by passed by a road that could use some TLC.  The road is now too rough to drive so people have to walk up it.  It would be so much better if folks could hike up the old trail instead.
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gb
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PostMon May 25, 2020 3:29 pm 
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I've done work on two trails using a Bowsaw, which is reasonable to carry on the back of a pack. Clearly it would depend on the "strength" and "stiffness" of the blade and the clearance to the handle. https://www.tractorsupply.com/tsc/product/stanley-fatmax-bow-saw-1322518?cm_mmc=feed-_-GoogleShopping-_-Product-_-1322518&gclid=CjwKCAjw2a32BRBXEiwAUcugiFAXJm89GHWZVFlso2nARgwaPJzJbQb7ttQ3Xqgcdb27A7HrpRN1zxoC5MkQAvD_BwE

I was able to cut logs to about 10" pretty quickly. A second friend carried a 24" lopper. In each case I cut areas of about 1/2 mile and still had time to do a long hike the same day. On one trail I cut a new route across an avalanche path of about 200 yards and in total made easily passable a trail gaining about 3200' over perhaps four miles. Parts of the trail did not require much work. The trail used to be in 101 Hikes.
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